2008/10/30

Model settles lawsuit over sexy jewelry ad


New York—A New York model has settled a $5 million lawsuit against a jewelry company over an Internet video advertisement that she claimed tarnished her wholesome image by depicting her in a pornographic way, according to The Associated Press.

The AP reports that the 37-year-old model, a married graduate student in elementary education who is unnamed in the lawsuit, and Szul Jewelry Inc. came to an undisclosed settlement.

A Manhattan judge filed a notice of the settlement last week, according to the AP.

The lawsuit, filed in December 2007, was over Szul's "Rock Her World," advertisement, which showed the woman in lingerie and a diamond necklace, moaning and stroking herself suggestively on a bed. The segment ends with the Web address, Szul.com, flashing across the screen.

According to the AP, the video attracted more than 700,000 hits before being removed from the Internet in January.

Read more at www.nationaljewelernetwork.com




2008/10/29

Michelle Obama 'Brooches' the Fashion Subject



Vintage diamonds, yellow gold, glittering gemstones – we’re seeing a bevy of beautiful variations on the brooch theme these days. The sensibly stylish, Michelle Obama, is now synonymous with the jewelry trend, and she launched yet another brooch blitz last night on the Tonight Show.

“I want to ask you about your wardrobe. I’m guessing about $60,000, $70,000 for that outfit,” Leno joked.



Read more on Jewelry Insider




2008/10/27

Diamonds Rock the Casbah


Diamonds and Charlize Theron. Now that’s a winning combination. Our favorite jewels made a dazzling appearance last night in Hollywood at the “Rock the Casbah” fundraiser for Richard Branson’s Virgin Unite charity, and the drooling photogs got a lense-full.

While the bearded entrepreneur is stuck at sea trying to break the world record for crossing the Atlantic (what kind of excuse is that!), Hollywood’s beauties came out to show their support.

Neve Campbell made a rare appearance in a classic strapless dress and tasteful diamond earrings. TV personality, Samantha Harris, looked stunning in diamond teardrops, and the always beautiful, Salma Hayek, buttoned up in a black pants suit and silver dollar-sized vintage diamond clusters.

Read more at: Jewelry Insider



Jewelry Gist: Appraising And Insuring Fine Jewelry


Understanding and insuring the appraised worth of a fine jewelry collection are important steps in protecting valued treasures. Some may be surprised to learn that a homeowner 's policy will not necessarily offer full coverage for a piece of jewelry, such as an engagement ring or beloved heirloom. And before searching out appropriate insurance coverage, a professional appraisal may be needed to render the most accurate value of jewelry pieces.

The Difference Between Appraisals and Lab Certificates. Both an appraisal and lab certificate reports provide important jewelry and gemstone information, but they actually serve separate purposes.

Lab certificates, or grading reports, indicate the value of an unmounted gemstone. These reports examine details regarding color and clarity, carat weight, cut and shape. A report for a gemstone or diamond does not typically change unless the stone undergoes an alteration, such as mounting.

Read more at: www.content4reprint.com



Metal Arts Students Recycle Castaway Jewelry into Brilliant, Sustainable New Designs


Metal Arts Students Recycle Castaway Jewelry into Brilliant, Sustainable New Designs

Radical Jewelry Makeover Exhibit On View through November 9th

San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) October 26, 2008 -- Academy of Art University School of Fine Art Sculpture students have joined forces with art students from across the Bay Area to participate in San Francisco's first-ever Radical Jewelry Makeover. After sifting through a rich supply of donated pieces from more than one hundred Bay Area residents, melting down precious metals, and forming creative new designs, the resulting fresh, unique, handmade, and mainly recycled jewelry are ready to be showcased at San Francisco's Velvet da Vinci Gallery.

Approximately twenty Academy of Art University students and alumni have created striking wearable metal arts creations for Radical Jewelry Makeover (RJM). Each student was passionate about inventively reconstructing the materials donated during the RJM Bay Area Jewelry Drive this past fall. As a group, the AAU students created more than 70 pieces for juried selection into the RJM - San Francisco exhibit. "As an artist in metal arts, I think it is really important to be aware of where your metals are coming from," shares Academy of Art University School of Fine Art Sculpture student Tura Sugden. "Radical Jewelry Makeover is making it possible for more consumer demand in sustainable jewelry source materials."

The Academy of Art University is participating in the largest RJM to date along with artists from California College of the Arts, City College of San Francisco, the Crucible, Metal Arts Guild, Revere Academy, Richmond Art Center, and Scintillant Studio. "This event is an exciting and spectacular way to make all artists deeply aware of the vital importance and responsibility of recycling in our profession," says Academy of Art University Director of Graduate Fine Art Sculpture Charlene Modena.

Read more at www.prweb.com




Art Nouveau jewelry (1890-1910)




Art Nouveau plique a jour enamel brooch - pendant with diamonds and a pearl
Art Nouveau plique a jour enamel brooch


(you can click the pictures to get to their descriptive page)


This time we would like to draw your attention to an era that most people know but perhaps would like to read a little bit more about: The Art Nouveau era.

Art Nouveau, the style of decoration current in the 1890s and early 1900s, the name being derived from a gallery for interior decoration opened by Samuel Bing in Paris in 1896, called the "Maison de l'Art Nouveau". It was introduced in England circa 1890, mainly as a product of the movement started by William Morris and the pre-Raphaelites, which spread to the Continent and America. It came to an end with the outbreak of World War I.







Typical golden Art Nouveau diamond ringArt Nouveau necklace with old mine cut diamonds, pearls and an opalLocket typical Art Nouveau female head
Art Nouveau ring
€ 2,950

Art Nouveau necklace
€ 5,450

Art Nouveau locket
€ 1,625



The same style in Germany was called Jugendstil, after a magazine called Die Jugend (The Youth), in Holland Slaoliestijl (salad oil style) after an advertising for salad oil and in Italy Floreale or Stile Liberty (after the London store that featured it).







Golden Art Nouveau brooch and pendant with thistle motiveGolden Art Nouveau mistletoe diamond ringArt Nouveau pendant with leafs
Art Nouveau brooch
€ 540

Art Nouveau ring
€ 1,150

Art Nouveau pendant
€ 485



Applicable to all the decorative arts, it was adapted to jewelry in England and the Continent. The style resulted from a revolt against the rigid styles of the previously mass-produced wares and a philosophy that sought to revive the craft movement and aestheticism in art. It featured free-flowing, curving lines with asymmetrical natural motifs, such as human, female faces, greatly influenced
by Japanese art. It used gemstones to emphasize their beauty, preferring pearls and cabochon opals and moonstones rather than faceted stones, and employed colourful enamelling.The pieces include pendants, necklaces and elaborate hair ornaments. Eventually its own extravagances led to its demise in circa 1910-1914.


See all our Art Nouveau jewelry.



2008/10/14

Lost ring finds its way home after 43 years


By DONETTA GODSEY
Courier Staff Writer

In June 1965, Linda Kraus, who had recently graduated from Winfield High School, was boating and picnicking with friends at Tuttle Creek Lake near Manhattan. She was already attending summer classes at Kansas State University in preparation for the fall semester.

Linda, along with friends, helped unload the car and put the boat out into a small cove. Prior to the unloading, Linda had placed her watch, an opal ring given to her by her grandmother, and her WHS class ring into a side pocket of her purse. Later that evening, when Linda got back to her dorm room, she discovered the items were missing.

Read further at Arkcity.net ...





2008/10/13

Victorian jewelry


Victorian jewelry (1830-1900)

This time we would like to get your attention for an era that everybody heard about but perhaps would like to know a little bit more about: The Victorian era. Originally the term "Victorian jewelry" was designated for articles of jewelry made in the United Kingdom during the reign of Queen Victoria, but not all of the many varieties produced during her long reign, 1837-1901, are now generally classified as Victorian jewelry. These days in the international antique jewelry trade the pieces now called Victorian jewelry are not necessarily made in the United Kingdom. The term "Victorian Jewelry" became a term used for European jewelry made in the 19th century rather then the description of a certain style-movement in a specific country.


(you can click the pictures to get to their descriptive pages)


Early Victorian or Georgian ring with rose cut diamonds and rubiesVictorian line or tennis bracelet with ruby, sapphire and rose cut diamondsSparkling Victorian butterfly
Early Victorian or Georgian ring
€ 1,695
Victorian line or tennis bracelet
€ 2,250
Sparkling Victorian butterfly
€ 2,100


The Victorian era began in 1837 when a young Victoria ascended the throne of England. It ended over sixty years later when Queen Victoria died in 1901. During the early years of Victoria's reign, some jewelry was made in Gothic and Renaissance styles. The jewels of the period were often accented with seed pearls and coral. The middle period saw the vogue for ostentatious jewels decorated with the greatly increased supply of pearls and South African diamonds.


golden Victorian pearl locketPink gold long pendent Victorian earringsBeautiful Victorian golden locket
golden Victorian pearl locket
€ 1,275
Victorian earrings
€ 1,150
Victorian golden locket
€ 1,275


After the death of Prince Albert, 1861, mourning jewelry came greatly in fashion. Jewelry became darker with more somber tones. Dark onyx and deep red garnets set in gold jewels with black enamel tracery are a typical example of this period.


Victorian tourbillon engagement ringVictorian rose cut diamond flower broochBig rose cut diamond antique pendant, Victorian jewelry
Victorian tourbillon engagement ring
€ 5,750
Victorian rose cut diamond flower brooch
€ 1,850
Victorian big rose cut diamond pendant
€ 5,250


The 19th century saw a revival of interest in archaeological and historical jewelry, influenced by the excavations at Pompeii and the high-quality reproductions made by the Castellanis, Carlo Guiliano,and Gicinto Melillo, and the work of John Brogden. Much Jewelry was brought back by travellers as souvenirs, especially from India and Japan from c. 1850, and this was imitated in England during the 1860s to the 1880s.


Terrific Victorian long golden chainVictorian rose cut diamonds parurelong Victorian chain
Victorian golden chain, extra long
€ 2,350
Victorian rose cut diamonds parure
€ 5,950
Extreme long Victorian golden chain
€ 4,250






2008/10/10

Griffin (or gryphon)


Gold griffin fighting over sparkling diamond egg with serpent
(you can click the picture to get to its descriptive page)



Griffin (or gryphon)

The griffin is a Greek hybrid creature, a strange and legendary figure, usually represented as being part eagle, part lion, and occasionally part serpent. The griffin motif is found in sculpture of the ancient Babylonians, Assyrians, Persians, and Romans; in beast allegories of the early Christians; and in Gothic architecture of the late Middle Ages. The griffin remains common in heraldy, representing strength and vigilance.

A hybrid is a composite of two or more species of animal and/or human. Strange as they may appear, the Greeks were endlessly fond of fabricating these creatures - one will recognize hybrids in the earliest myths and legends, not to mention inhabiting numerous works of art. For the Greeks especially, these beings of the imagination must have had great significance, in that they represented the uncivilized forces in nature that opposed mankind.

The seven most known hybrids are:

The centaur
In Greek mythology and art, the centaur has the torso of a human combined with the body of a horse.
The cockatrice
This creature was also known as a basilisk ("king of serpents"), and its very glance could kill; the cockatrice was composed of a dragon's tail and assorted poultry parts.
The giants (gigantes)
These fierce and frightening beings were the offspring of Gaia (the Earth).
The griffin
According to myth, the griffin was a creature with a lion's body attached to the head, wings, and claws of an eagle.
The harpy
Harpies had female torsos melded with vulture parts; the name harpy is derived from the Greek word that means "snatcher".
The satyrs (faun)
Satyrs were often the companions of Dionysos, and these creatures were depicted in myth and art with the legs of goats and bestial natures.
The sirens
Women with bird-like bodies; sirens were legendary for luring sailors by singing their enchanted songs.

See also our:
other griffin jewelry
our latest acquisitions
extensive antique jewelry glossary
antique jewelry style overview





2008/10/07

Star sapphire


Absolute top notch bracelet by Léon Gariod with star sapphire and rose cuts
(you can click the picture to get to its descriptive page)

Star sapphire


The star sapphire in the center of the depicted bracelet is something we hardly ever see, we couldn't stop playing with it in the sunlight. This is how one wants to have a Victorian bracelet with a star sapphire and rose cut diamonds to look like. The overall impression of this beauty is impressive, we are not even sure its splendour is caught well on the pictures.

When looking at the master mark we see an "L" and a "G" which was the "poiçon de maître" (French for "master mark") for Léon Gariod. This company was established by Gaucher and Tonnelier in 1859. Gaucher became the sole owner in 1869 and started a partnership with Gariod in 1875 who took over the company in 1884. The company with its address in Rue St. Augustin 29 in Paris became specialized in articulated bracelets and mat gold chains with precious stones.

A star sapphire is a variety of sapphire that has a silky structure and when cut en cabochon shows a 6-rayed (sometimes 4-ray, 8-ray or 12-ray) star in reflected light, due to the phenomenon known as asterism.

Asterism is an optical phenomenon of a star-like figure that is seen in some crystals by reflected light or transmitted light. An example is the 6-ray star-like figure that is observed by reflected light in some gemstones (especially the star ruby and the star sapphire) when cut en cabochon in such a manner that the greatest thickness of the stone lies parallel to the vertical axis of the crystal. The stone must be precisely cut, aligned with the vertical axis, as otherwise the result will be an off-centre, crooked or dim star, or even the absence of a star.

The effect is caused by the reflection of light from a series of microscopic fibrous inclusions or small canals lying within the crystal parallel to the prism faces and arranged in three directions that intersect, usually at angles of 60°.

What's interesting about the company of Léon Gariod is that they worked very closely together with L.Gautrait, an illuster jeweller of the Art Nouveau period of who not much, if any, biographical information is known. According to Vever (who wrote the "bible" for antique jewelers around 1900), Gautrait was a "ciseleur-modeleur" and fidèle collaborateur" of the Parisian jewellers Léon Gariod. Vever characterised his collegue as an "excellent perfectionistic jeweller with a delicate taste".

Vever continues: "These simple yet decorative jewels were meticulously made and extremely popular. With his attractive brooches and his pendants of contemporary or traditional inspiration, Gariod's work has attracted a great deal of attention. With his faithful collaborator M.(...M and not L ! - Adin) designs and chases these creations, characterized by their great refinement.



See also our:
other sapphire jewelry
our latest acquisitions
extensive antique jewelry glossary
antique jewelry style overview




2008/10/05

Snakes and serpents


Impressive flexible snake bracelet with rose cut diamond and big pearl
(you can click the picture to get to its descriptive page)

Snakes and serpents


The snake and its symbolic attributes have been a rich source of inspiration for goldsmiths over the centuries. Some examples of snake (or serpent) bracelets of the type of the one pictured above were already made in Greece from the 3rd century BC and also in the Roman Empire. The timeless, evocative look of antique snake jewelry makes a distinctive addition to every woman's jewelry wardrobe.

The serpent is one of the oldest and most widespread mythological symbols. Considerable overlap exists in the symbolic values that serpents represent in various cultures. Some such overlap is due to the common historical ancestry of contemporary symbols. Much of the overlap, however, is traceable to the common biological characteristics of snakes.

The following are some of the particular symbolic values frequently assiged to serpents in myth, legend, and literature:

  • guardianship
  • poison and medicine
  • renewal, rebirth, regeneration




2008/10/03

Birthstones and monthstones

Curly late Victorian early Art Nouveau diamonds and sapphire engagement ring
(you can click the picture to get to its descriptive page)

Birthstones and monthstones

Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist traditions mingled with Pagan legends led to the association of certain stones with different months, astrological signs, Tribes of Israel and Apostles but also with healing powers for social, physological, metaphysical and even medical conditions. Not that we necessarily promote or believe such claims, but we think they can make for an interesting conversation.

In the 18th century the relationship of stones with months was popularized but it was based mainly on the colours of the stones. Owing to the fact that several stones have the same colours, confusion resulted, so that in 1937 the National Association of Goldsmiths of Great Britain established a uniform list (with some alternatives for the more costly stones).



January: garnet
February: amethyst
March: aquamarine and jasper
April: diamond and rock crystal
May: emerald and chrysoprase
June: pearl and moonstone
July: ruby, cornelian and onyx
August: peridot and sardonyx
September: sapphire and lapis lazuli
October: opal and tourmaline
November: topaz and citrine
December: turquoise



See also our:
deeper information on birth and monthstones
extensive antique jewelry glossary
antique jewelry style overview