French Art Nouveau 18k and Star Sapphire Serpent Scarf Ring

Back in August when we gave a talk at the Brooklyn Brainery, some audience members ended up starting a long discussion about how brooches and pins needed to make a comeback. We couldn’t agree more! So many fabulous antique jewels languish away in cases, just waiting for somebody bold enough to bring back the brooch. So, to that end, say hello to our Art Nouveau scarf ring! 

 18k yellow gold and star sapphire scarf ring.  French marks, c.1900. For sale at Gray & Davis. 

18k yellow gold and star sapphire scarf ring.  French marks, c.1900. For sale at Gray & Davis. 

A sculptural 18k yellow gold serpent coils around itself and sports a purple star sapphire on its forehead in this delightfully specific piece from the turn of the twentieth century. French marks, c. 1900

What is a scarf ring, you may ask? It is exactly what it sounds like: a large, decorative ring that holds a scarf in place. 

Our serpent scarf ring has a sturdy spring action pin that still functions perfectly. 

Though scarf rings are not as commonplace an accessory as they were in the early 1900s, Hermes still produces a number of styles. 

So, we challenge you to go beyond the world of ring-bracelet-necklace-earring (even though they are great). Accepting odd and forgotten forms of antique jewels into your repetoire will open up a whole new world of accessorizing capabilities. 

Friday Face: Vintage Wedding Stereographs


We took our first trip to the Brimfield Antique Show this week! In addition to viewing all of the spectacular vintage gems, Ali picked up some neat old stereographs depicting (often humorous) vintage wedding ceremonies.

 '"After Ceremony": Sue & Hubert look frightened as they embark on their new life together.' I think the wedding party looks more frightened than the couple.

'"After Ceremony": Sue & Hubert look frightened as they embark on their new life together.' I think the wedding party looks more frightened than the couple.

   
  
 
  
    Oliver Wendell Holmes’ Stereoscope viewer, originally developed in 1861.

Oliver Wendell Holmes’ Stereoscope viewer, originally developed in 1861.

Now a novelty, stereographs were once a popular and affordable form of entertainment.  The images were meant to be viewed with a stereoscope. It’s hard to see with the naked eye, but each picture is slightly different to take into account the difference in how our left and right eyes process what they see. Pretty cool for technology that was invented around 1850.

If you want to view more, check out the New York Public Library’s Stereogranimator, which has turned several stereographic images in animated GIFs. The Boston Public Library also has a neat collection of digitized stereographs.

 Sneaking a kiss before the big day!

Sneaking a kiss before the big day!