Saturday, June 7, 2014

Crosses in Regency Jewelry

When I first started researching Georgian jewelry, I couldn't help but notice how frequently cross pendants were featured.  They show up on originals, but also are regular guests in fashion plates:

Early 19th Century Pink Topaz cross, sold at Sotheby's

Elizabeth Monroe's Topaz cross pendant (1817-1825), Smithsonian

Given how common they were, I really wanted to have them as an option for my reproduction Regency jewelry.  I'm a big fan of trying to reproduce the most common types of jewelry, and crosses certainly qualify!

I was frustrated in my searching.  I couldn't find anything that had the right "look" and I didn't want to settle.  I found a few settings, but they were either too small or too big or were for square rhinestones, and the major thing I noticed is that the stones in the originals were almost always ovals or round.

Circa 1770 Georgian Paste cross pendant, Via Ebay

Finally, after exhaustive searching and emailing and researching, I found a company in Germany that makes settings for modern Swarovski jewelry and they made some settings for me in my requested size.  I'm always nervous when ordering custom made stuff because it doesn't always work out (ask me about the hundreds of unusable settings I have lingering around in my craft room...), but these were everything I hoped they would be!  I spilled the beans about these on my Facebook page earlier this week because I just couldn't wait!

Reproduction Georgian Cross Pendants by Dames a la Mode

A reproduction paste glass cross pendant hooked on to one of my collet necklaces

Some of the colors of reproduction Regency cross pendants I offer

I'm really thrilled with these, and I think they really capture the look of the cross pendants from the period.  What do you think?
Jane and Cassandra Austen's Topaz crosses, at Chawton House

19th Century faceted paste pendant, via Ebay

Circa 1830s Topaz cross, via Ebay

Circa 1830s Aquamarine cross, via Ebay
Amethyst Paste cross, circa 1780, via DB Gems

I'm planning on offering this mostly as custom orders and add-ons to my reproduction collet necklaces, but I've listed a few stand-alone cross pendants in my Etsy shop if you'd like to take a look:

Monday, June 2, 2014

What Size Collet Necklace Do I Need?

There are a lot of different sizes of vintage rhinetones that I use to make my collet necklaces, everything from diminuitive little 8x10mm sparkles to giant 20mm statement stones.  It can be really tough to decide which size is right for you, and it isn't always easy to tell what size they will be from the photos in my Etsy shop.

I recently did a professional photoshoot with my friend Wilson Freidman, and one of my goals was to be able to see what the various sizes look like when being worn.  Keep in mind that I am full-figured, tall, and have a slightly-larger-than-average (17 inches) neck.  These will look different on a more delicate figure.  So here are a few examples:

12x10mm Oval Peridot Collet
10mm Round Pink Tourmaline Collet

Layered 12x10mm Pink Tourmalines, Diamonds, and Peridots

14mm Round Emerald Collet

14x10mm Octagon Ruby Collet

Layered 18x13mm Oval Peridot and Sapphire Collets

18x13mm Peridot Collet

20mm Round Peridots
And, for the ultimate luxury look, Anna Wintour Style Layered Collet Necklaces.  I'm wearing a 12x10mm octagon diamond, 18x13mm peridot, 18x13mm sapphire, and 20mm peridot.  LUXE!

 At the time I'm writing this, I have all of these collet necklaces in stock in my Etsy shop, but my stock changes all the time.  If you're looking for a particular size, just let me know!  I'll be happy to let you know what I have available in each of these sizes.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Get the look: Anna Wintour Necklaces

A few weeks ago, I did a photoshoot with a friend of mine so I could have some professional pictures of my collet necklaces to use in my Etsy shop.  I decided at the end to throw a few on at once, a la Anna Wintour, with the hopes that I could get one to use as my profile picture in my shop.  And man, I just LOVE this look!  (All photos by DriftingFocus Photography)

Anna Wintour Style Necklaces

Collet Necklaces worn layered, a la Anna Wintour

In the above photos, I am wearing 4 necklaces, 12x10 foiled Diamond, 18x13 foiled Sapphire, 18x13 unfoiled Peridot, and 20mm foiled Peridot.  At the time of writing, all are available in my shop:  Dames a la Mode.

I especially like the styles above, because it has two big greens, offset by a more subtle Diamonds and Sapphires. (Hahaha!  I can't believe I just described this as subtle!)

I did a few more with different necklaces:

Anna Wintour Collet Necklaces
These two necklaces were in the above photos as well, but worn without the larger Peridot and the Diamond.  I love pairing these types together because they are the same shape and size, but have different colors in the stones and the settings.  I think it makes a nice contrast while still having continuity.

Anna Wintour Style Necklaces

Anna Wintour Necklaces by Dames a la Mode
They styles above are all smaller necklaces, a 12x10 Pink Topaz, 12x10 Diamond, and 12x10 Peridot.  These are also currently available in my shop, along with dozens of other styles, sizes, and colors of Anna Wintour necklaces, which you can mix and match to your heart's content!  Which ones would you pair?