Monday, December 30, 2013
Soon to be listed to Metal Corset II is this late 1700s early 1800s French memento mori armorial wax seal matrix depicting a skull and crossbones inside a shield topped with a winged helmet flanked by the initials H V G.
Most likely a 1700s early 1800s Freemason seal which gained its root from the traditions of the York Rite Chivalric Orders.
Here's an interesting link on the history of memento mori symbolism and Freemasonry:
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
An extremely fine example of a faceted Stuart Crystal memento mori slide with an enameled skeleton holding a staff in one hand and a tempus fugit (hourglass symbolizing "time flees") in the other.
The skeleton rests upon a bed of brunette hair and is flanked by two high karat gold cipher wire initials.
The sawtooth bezel slide case is 22 karat gold.
Sunday, November 17, 2013
Check it out!
Thursday, November 7, 2013
I've collected several antique jewelry components over the years that have either been orphaned, such as components to a larger jewelry piece, or broken bits of treasure, such as a locket front.
These items continue to convey beauty in their own way and just like any orphan, they desire to find a new home and family.
A few of these saved items were used to create this beautiful bracelet and have now found a new home.
The antique jewelry components are as follows:
1. Victorian ship's wheel compass in working order
2. Victorian carved gutta percha castle pendant (probably once from a gutta percha bracelet)
3. Art Nouveau gold filled locket of a beautiful woman with flowing hair and paste stones (front only)
4. Art Deco Habille carved shell cameo locket with diamond necklace
5. Victorian brass hand from an antique chatelaine chain
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Newly listed to Metal Corset is this Victorian daguerreotype assemblage necklace.
I've combined it with an Victorian gutta percha hand and rose brooch and an Victorian carved bone or ivory love birds brooch and suspended it from a four stranded necklace which includes an assemblage of:
baroque pearls, antique French faceted steel cut beads from an Art Deco purse, silver and gold faceted pyrite, black spinel beads, antique mother of pearls, antique carved ivory rose beads, antique blue Czech glass beads, bone ring, t-bar from a watch chain, antique rhinestone ball, Victorian 14k gold corrugated beads and a length of gold plated Victorian book chain.
Monday, November 4, 2013
Newly listed to Metal Corset II is this rare Georgian (1790-1820) flaming hearts hair memorial mourning brooch.
Beneath the glazed compartment is a beautiful sepia painting which was painstakingly hand created using macerated hair.
Several loving symbolic icons are represented in this memorial piece as follows:
Cypress Tree: Symbolic for hope as the trees point towards the heavens
Dog: Symbolizes Fidelity (rare)
Column or plinth:
Unbroken-Symbolic for Strength of Life and Eternity
Broken-Symbolic for Life cut short
Flaming Hearts: Symbolic forTogetherness and Love
Crown/Wreath: Symbolic for Redemption
And a monogram/cypher made of hair, "CM" or "MC" which could stand for Charles and Mary, or Christine and Michael, etc.
So, my interpretation of this brooch memorializes two individuals in love, probably a husband and wife, that will continue to love one another for an eternity in fidelity that now reside in heaven and live in the glory of redemption.
(thank you to www.artofmourning.com for symbolism)
Thursday, September 12, 2013
Friday, July 5, 2013
There are willow branches in the background which symbolize mourning.
The rear is inscribed to a married couple with the same initials, "S T," who died two months apart in 1802. It is absolutely stunning.
Friday, June 21, 2013
Newest to my collection is this absolutely amazing hand engraved skull and crossbones secret society two cent coin. It reminds me of a wax seal matrix.
So, this coin represents the Skull and Bones Society which was founded in 1832. It is an undergraduate (alumni) secret society at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, and the members are known as, "Bonesmen". Among some of the prominent alumni members were former Presidents William Howard Taft, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, amongst many others.
The number 322 is the society's emblem and refers to the death of Demosthenes, a Greek orator, who died in 322 BC. It is believed that the Greek goddess Eulogia, the goddess of eloquence, came down from the heavens and took up residence in the tomb of the Skull and Bones. Huh?
Okay, I believe some of these Bonesmen had a little too much to drink the night they came up with 322 because I'm having a hard time finding the connection between Demosthenes' death in 322 B.C. and the goddess Eulogia, but it is a secret society's emblem, so perhaps we're not supposed to know what the true meaning is-after all, it IS a secret.... But if anyone knows more about this legend, please post a message.
Anyway, I'll be using this coin to reproduce memento mori sterling silver earrings, minus the 322.
So keep a weather eye on Metal Corset.
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
I recently found this gorgeous gold plated Victorian ship wheel compass fob. The back is gorgeous with an engraved star and the constellation of orbiting planets. One handle is missing, but overall it's a stunning piece. Soon to be part of an assemblage bracelet from my, "Hand Series." So keep a weather eye.
Sunday, May 5, 2013
Monday, April 29, 2013
Lately, I've noticed a refocus on memento mori and Charles I Royalist jewelry. I've long been fascinated with the history associated and their beauty. Out of all the jewelry I've collected over the years, the Stuart crystal pieces, including many Royalist pieces, are favorites.
The images are mostly from the web and are the most beautiful, in my opinion, of memento mori and Royalist pieces I've come across. I continue to covet them and so desperately need to win that lottery! Enjoy the beautiful images!
PS-The last photo shows Elizabeth I's ring encrusted with rubies. Inside, two jeweled portraits, one of herself and one of her mother, Anne Boleyn. (I couldn't resist!)
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Friday, April 12, 2013
Monday, April 8, 2013
It was established that the mourning period would be the length of time it would take a vessel to fill with tears, or the time it took for those tears to evaporate.
This Georgian or Victorian lachrymatory vessel is intricately detailed in gold gilt. It measures approximately 7" tall. Soon to be listed to Metal Corset II.
Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Check it out!
This necklace is a combination of a sterling silver Nun's cross dated 1869, antique 1800s bisque doll and an antique sterling silver Immaculate Heart Of Mary reliquary.
These three relics suspend from a chain made from Art Deco cut steel beads salvaged from a damaged French Art Deco cut steel beaded purse.
Check it out now!
Monday, April 1, 2013
This is one of the most incredible brooches I've seen in a long time. It is a 3-dimensional Georgian or early Victorian sterling silver dove with an amazing plaited hair memorial under glass. The pin back is comprised of a tube hinged back fastener and "C" clasp. This dove is religious in nature as it holds an olive branch in its beak. Measures 1.75" beak to tail. An absolutely stunning piece. Soon to be listed to Metal Corset II, so keep a weather eye.