Brooches 27.06.2016
Eye miniautre pendant.

The Collector

A collector’s passion can be driven by the simplest things. There’s the sheer joy and thrill of finding an object…

Accessories 23.02.2015
This mourning buckle contains panels of woven hair, decorated with an elaborate inscription in gold thread and a small enamelled skull, all set behind rock crystal. The inscription, partly in latin, tells us that the piece commemorates Elizabeth Harman who died on 11 April 1698, aged 27.

Mourning Shoe Buckles and Fashion

As with any piece of fashion accessory, if it could be introduced into the mourning industry, it would be. The…

Rings 31.10.2014
Queen Caroline Of Ansbach Ring

A Mourning Tour: Queen Caroline Of Ansbach Mourning Ring

It’s often the mourning jewels for the monarchy which set the standard for style of their times. These jewels are…

Lockets 01.02.2013
Late Georgian Heart Crystal

Georgian Heart with Hairwork Twist in Crystal, 1824

As we’ve seen from the following articles, the heart is an important symbol in jewellery and social history: > An Eternity…

Lockets 17.12.2012
Georgian Heart Crystal Pendant 18th Century Ribbon Bow White Enamel

Merit Claims Esteem/Bow Heart Locket, 18th Century

Before we take a look at this wonderful ‘Georgian Heart’ pendant, it’s valuable to read through the following articles: > An…

Lockets 14.12.2012
Georgian Heart Crystal Pendant 18th Century Ribbon Bow

Hairwork Bow/Ribbon Pendant

By the 1780s, many of the shapes in memorial and sentimental jewels that were common remained the popular standard. From…

Lockets 12.12.2012
Georgian Heart Crystal Pendant 18th Century Ribbon French

French Ribbon Pendant, 18th Century

Here, the ribbon motif is used in grand style to accommodate the heart shape within, however, the heart is missing…

Lockets 10.12.2012
white enamel ribon heart pendant

18th Century Ribbon Motif Pendant

The DNA of this wonderful “Georgian Heart” pendant shares many characteristics with this particular ‘REGARD’ necklace, however, it is quite…

Lockets 07.12.2012
Georgian Heart Crystal Pendant 18th Century

An Eternity Knot in a Crystal Heart Pendant

Romantic love from the 15th century depicted the heart motif, in terms of ‘love’ being a symbol of personal affection,…

Lockets 05.12.2012
Georgian Heart Crystal Rectangular Pendant 18th Century

Mourning Crystal “Georgian” Heart

This crystal heart, measuring 1 and 1/8 inches North to South, and 7/8 of an inch East to West. It…

Rings 16.12.2011
Chas Fraser / OB: 16 April 1746 / Born: May 23/ 1725 Mourning Ring

The Eternity Twist, Hairwork, Crystal and the Early 18th Century / Ring

Twisting hairwork into the eternity knot was quite a popular motif in the first half of the 18th century, one…

Lockets 19.10.2011

A Grand Statement in an Early Pendant

Often when appraising jewels, it’s easy to lose sight of their fashionable purpose, of promoting an aesthetic that is beautiful…

Rings 13.10.2011
c.1680-1700 Memento Mori Mourning Ring

How Society Entered Mourning: c.1680-1700 Memento Mori Mourning Ring

I’ve written quite a bit about memento mori, it seems to be one of those subjects that is as fascinating…

Lockets 10.10.2011
Hon Alice Nugent in a 1730 Mourning Locket

Eternity in a Twist: The Hon Alice Nugent in a 1730 Mourning Locket and the Hairwork Eternity

When presented with a beautiful piece like this, one can’t help but emote. There are so many reasons why this…

Rings 12.09.2011
William 1702 Crystal Ring

A William III Mourning Ring, 1702

That magnificent collector Barbara Robbins is back with a lovely look at a new acquisition; “This is a wonderful, circa…

Rings 24.06.2011
Chas Fraser / OB: 16 April 1746 / Born: May 23/ 1725 Mourning Ring

Eternally Twisting in 1746

Ah, another delight torn from the clutches of London! This one came from a collection of an antiques dealer in…

Collecting 07.04.2011

Is It, Or Isn’t It? Heart Pendant – First Impressions

One of the joys and perils of knowing a little bit about old jewellery is that people want to know…

Rings 31.10.2010
Ellen Savage ob 16 Oct 1745 Memento Mori Ring

Spooky! Skeletal Rings, Memento Mori and the Evolution of the Symbol

For today’s look at a series of skeletal rings, I’m going to focus on the period of c.1700-c.1740 and take…

Rings 30.09.2010
c.1680-1700 Memento Mori Mourning Ring

How Society Entered Mourning: c.1680-1700 Memento Mori Mourning Ring

have lost their enamel inlay and are quite worn down, but this one is a perfect representation of how it was from when it was constructed. Note the Baroque influence in the design and how this would influence pieces of contemporary and later times. Particularly, the society in which this ring was created was dealing with the new found stability in the government due to the Restoration and from this, industry was finding new ways to create a niche in producing items for a society that was becoming upwardly mobile in ways that had not been seen since the Roman era. Appropriating popular art styles, such as that of the all-pervasive Baroque, and using its influence in products was (and still is) only a logical step in simply selling an item.

Collecting 28.09.2010
Garnet Ring, c.1830

Hunting for Treasure in Sydney, 2010

As mentioned last week, I spent an all-too-brief weekend in Sydney, where I got to meet a lot of lovely…

Rings 23.09.2010
Stuart Crystal 17th Century Ring Memento Mori

17th Century Crystal Memento Mori Ring: A Study

Rings of the late 17th century are the predecessors to many of the ring styles that followed through to the 19th century. They are also becoming harder and harder to find, as many were worn for their intent (as opposed to being hidden away as keepsakes) and they’ve survived many modern recessions that saw some beautiful pieces get broken down and melted for their gold.

Lockets 25.06.2010

Is It, Or Isn’t It? Heart Pendant – First Impressions

One of the joys and perils of knowing a little bit about old jewellery is that people want to know…