Posted on Leave a comment

First show of the year

Hello friends!

The start of the year is always very quiet for me. Usually, this is time when I take stock of things, plan what shows to do for the year and other administrative tasks that are essential to the business.

This year however, I had the opportunity to participate in a show organized by the wonderful folks of Pot and Box at no less than the iconic Fisher Building.

The Fisher Building which was designed in an Art Deco style was completed in 1928 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1989. How could I pass up the chance to be in such a prestigious building?

I have to admit I was a bit worried because the weekend of the show was also the weekend when we were hit with another winter storm.

But storm or not, we were all there bright and early to welcome the crowd that came through those Art Deco doors.

After I finished setting up, I went for a look around and was blown away by the talent shown by the wonderful participating vendors.

Immediately, i was wowed by Project Projections, who laser cuts these beautiful shadow lamps. I loved it so much, I took home his constellation lamp!

Then there was Owen and Abbey with their simple yet beautifully crafted home furnishings and tables made from wood salvaged from abandoned homes in Detroit, Pontiac and other urban areas. Their work is proof that beauty can be found and made everywhere.

I really liked the aesthetics of Corbé

with its smooth handmade curves and a color palette designed to go with everything.

And I loved meeting Corliss from The Lowry Estate. She had funky vintage pieces at prices that won’t break the bank. Just check out the coat she had.

All in all a fantastic show!

Posted on Leave a comment

Shop small business

Hello friends,

Apparently today is Cyber Monday, which means it’s deals galore all over the internet. The good thing about shopping online is we are able to support a number of businesses, including those which don’t as yet have, brick and mortar stores, myself included.

But I love brick and mortar stores. Call it old fashioned but there’s nothing like walking inside a store and finding just the right thing. Bonus, if you make friends along with way with the people in the store.

With that in mind as well as the idea of

shopping from small businesses, a friend and I set out to do our version of a pop up store.

Our “store” looked out onto this view…

It’s a pretty good view don’t you think? It certainly didn’t feel like work whenever we looked out.

Shy vs Bold, my partner in this pop up is a purveyor of wonderfully distinctive clothes and accessories. It began with a desire to offer something different from what we find in stores. And now carries a host of pretty dresses, cool jackets and funky accessories. If you want to stand out, Shy vs Bold is the way to go!

Then there’s me with my one of a kind antique charms and storied beads. I will never tire of making these pieces with a little bit of me and a whole lot of history.

What a blast we all had! But the best part was seeing our friends leave supremely happy and content with their purchases. As one friend put it “ I feel like a model after this afternoon”

Posted on Leave a comment

Color palette of the week

Earlier this week it was very gloomy and dark. Now, I’m not a fan of dark and stormy so when I started work, I found myself gravitating towards some of my brighter beads. Something to beat away the gloom if you will. Of course once I started with this idea, I just kept going with it. Here’s what I’ve come up so far…

A simple necklace with a vibrant silver green foil bead with this deep flash of blue. This Bohemian bead dates back to the late 30s , early 40s. This piece is designed to stack happily with other necklaces already in your jewelry box. Or when you just want a hint of color.

For my next piece, I decided to make a bracelet. The bead I used here is deceptively simple looking. But look closely and there are swirls of aventurine hiding in its depths. This one is Venetian in origin and I’d say is early 1900s.

Making this bracelet, reminded me of another very special bead that I’ve had for awhile. An antique teeny tiny peacock eye glass bead from Venice. These beads get their name from their brilliant colors that resemble the plumage of a peacock. To make this bracelet even more special, I matched them with tiny antique coral beads.

Once I’d made the bracelets, I thought well, I might as well make some earrings to go with all these pieces. You can never go wrong with having a new pair or two.

This first pair is made with these really bright apple green Venetian silver foil beads from the 40s. They really are scrumptious looking!

And last but not the least is a really fun pair of dangling earrings made with vintage green and blue glass beads.

All these pieces will be coming soon in the eshop!! Drop me a line if you can’t wait!

Posted on Leave a comment

Summer stackers 

Hello friends! Temperatures hit over the 90s this weekend and everyone was out enjoying the beautiful weather. And as summer is all about enjoying the outdoors, I’ve been making new pieces that are easy to wear, easy to layer and stack but still very pretty. As always these pieces are designed to slip right among those pieces you already have in your jewelry box. 

This first piece features a wonderful mid 19th century Venetian trade bead on a silver chain. I love the summery colors of teal blue, yellow and green on this bead! 


Nothing says classic more than pearls and this vintage French glass pearl is jazzed up with gold and silver decorative caps.

This necklace is perfect for adding just a touch of color to an all white outfit.


And finally, a necklace featuring a pretty early 20th century Venetian bead of sky blue and gold. 

Posted on 1 Comment

Some wonderful news

Hello friends! Hope your week is off to a wonderful start. Mine certainly is as I’m very happy to announce that certain De Petites Merveilles pieces are now available at the Franklin Village Boutique!!


The boutique is ideally located in the historic village of Franklin. The village has cute stores and cafes as well as a cider mill that serves the most wonderful donuts and cider in the fall. 
Terri Cooper, owner of the Village Boutique opened her store 2 years ago. She bought out the owners of the store that used to be there because she says she walked in and felt something special about the space. Immediately, she knew she wanted to open her own store there.  After extensive renovations, her store opened, stocked with the latest fashions but also with local designers and artists. 


Terri believes firmly in having a welcoming and inviting space and she has succeeded admirably in this. I walked into her store and felt like this was a great place for my jewelry.  Talking to her and watching her interact with the people who walked in reinforced this feeling.  
She says the best part of being in the store is meeting all the people coming in and sharing in their lives. “People are so interesting, there’s layers to them just waiting to be discovered” she said to me.  


I love the fact that she believes in and supports local artists. I can’t tell you how proud I am to be carried by a store that still believes in hand crafted products. More importantly, my pieces are in a store that believes in treating everyone as a friend.  That’s increasingly rare in these days of efficient online shopping.

So which Petites Merveilles pieces have found a home at the Village boutique? Here are a few pieces….




I hope you stop by and check out this wonderful store!

Some details:

Franklin Village Boutique

32716 Franklin Road

Franklin, MI

248-8510055

Posted on Leave a comment

A match to make your day

Hello friends, remember these earrings?


After I finished this pair I was left with two of these pink and silver foil beads. At first I thought I would make another pair of earrings but I wasn’t convinced by this idea. I want my jewelry to be unique and one of a kind so another pair just wouldn’t do.

So I put them away. Then  I remembered that somewhere in my bead box was a lonesome silver foil bead that was the only one left after I finished a necklace. Now this little orphan bead is a really pretty bead with lots of silver foiling that has remained intact over the years. Just like the pink and silver beads, this one dates back to the early 1950s. In no time, this necklace was born…


I love how these lonesome one-of beads suddenly found themselves together to make a beautiful new piece.

And look how well the necklace goes with the earrings!


The earrings are now listed in the shop and the necklace will soon be added!

Posted on Leave a comment

A shop update full of earrings

I’ve been on an earring kick lately. Just check out these beauties that are now listed in the shop. These are all Venetians beads dating back to the period between the 40s and early 50s. What I love about these pairs is no two beads are exactly alike. Each bead has subtle differences that make them so interesting to wear. I like to think of it as the mark of the hands that made them. 

 


Posted on Leave a comment

One necklace for different looks

When I make something, I always try to imagine it slipping into my jewelry box and getting along with everthing else that’s there. I also like it when the piece goes with lots of different looks. After all, we work hard, do different things so we want our jewelry to be equally versatile. That’s why I’m so happy with this new necklace.


Today’s piece is a simple enough necklace composed of multicolored crystal rondelles.  These rondelles date back to the early 40s and have clearly lived other lives. They’ve been well loved as evidenced by the missing crystals in each rondelle. When I saw these in Paris, I knew immediately that I wanted to make something with them. Yes, they aren’t perfect but I couldn’t bear to just throw them away. As it turns out, it goes with a  number of different looks. So far, I’ve come up with three looks to give you ideas on how to wear this beauty. 

If you’re feeling casual, it’s the perfect accessory to jazz up a shirt. Throw it over a tee, or in this case, a turtleneck since it’s still cold, and you’re good to go.


It’s also great for layering. I love it with another long chain over a simple black shirt.


This last look may yet be my favorite. When you want color and layers, it’s totally possible with this piece.


How would you wear this necklace? 

Posted on Leave a comment

Bookish adventures

One rainy misty afternoon, I finally managed to make my way down to John King books. I’d long heard about this 4 story institution devoted to books and I have long wanted to visit.

Well, it finally happened and I can tell you that it lives up to all the accolades it has earned over the years.


The bookstore was founded by Mr John King in 1971 and its original location was in Dearborn. It moved to its downtown location in 1983 when Mr King purchased the Advanced Glove factory. It later expanded to have two other locations though sadly, one of these two has recently closed.

They have an inventory of over a million titles divided among its two remaining branches thought the downtown one has a much larger inventory. It’s not far fetched to think they have a book on possibly every topic you can think of. No wonder it was once ranked no 2 of the world’s 18 Bookstores Every Book Lover Must Visit at Least Once. I’m keeping this list by the way and making it one of my goals to visit as many as I can. But I digress.


In this day and age where everything is digital and online, John King books is firmly on the old fashioned side. There is no computerized inventory except for their rare book collection. They cannot look up titles for you,  instead, they have booksellers who can direct your search for titles and then you’re on your own– to peruse the alphabetically arranged shelves and get lost in the warren of musty corridors of shelves lined with books and yet more books. When you come, don’t expect to surface for air until hours later. Actually, it’s best to simply clear your schedule of all other things.


As for my book haul, I came away with a very modest one. But this just means another trip down very soon! 

Posted on 2 Comments

Soaking up the sun and finding inspiration

A few days before the close of 2016, we had the pleasure of spending a few days in the sunny island of Puerto Rico. It was a welcome break from the snow and cold and a chance to soak up the sun and recharge.

img_7951

 We were greeted by blue skies and the blue green waters of the Atlantic. We could feel ourselves immediately relaxing. The island was first settled in 1509 by the Spanish led by Juan Ponce de Leon. The present site of San Juan was founded in 1510 and was  given its formal name  of Puerto Rico de San Juan Bautista in 1521.  It is the second oldest European established capital in the new world, the first being Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic.

The remnants of its colonial past is evident in the walls of the city and its two forts that stills stands guard over the city. In days past, the forts constituted the first line of defense against hostile powers who would storm the city and take its riches.

Nowadays, its a popular spot for those who want to take a stroll, and take in the magnificent views of the sea.

img_7959

 

By day, we shared the historic downtown with the numerous daytrippers from the many cruise ships that make this port, a must stop in the Caribbean. All of us were walking around holding our cameras and phones in front of us, trying to capture the vibrant colors that adorn the traditional colonial houses and buildings.

Blue, yellow, violet and pink, every hue was present and it was fun trying to capture that.

Business establishments are on the first floor while families still lived in its upper floors.

At night, once all but the few who chose to stay the night were gone, it was possible to catch glimpses of the families that still live behind the wrought iron balconies and lace covered windows.

The best surprise of the trip was discovering a strong local and thriving artistic community. Yes, there are a number of American style malls but there are also a good number of stores carrying only local artists and featuring only local and handmade crafts and goods.

Take this store which proudly refuses to carry anything other than their own handmade Panama hats…

Or this one store which carried a number of pretty bags, among other things. On the day we were there, we got to meet the artist.  Its a big family undertaking, she told us. Her mother and daughter help her make the bags and her other daughter sells them in the store.

img_8050

 Here is a small sampling of her work.

img_7989One gallery I loved featured art work  showing the wonderful old doors of San Juan.
img_7955

 

But my favorite discovery was a tiny shop that also housed a jewelry school.  Nothing touristy about this shop. When I stepped in, I was among residents who were having their jewels cleaned or repaired. This picture is a small sampling of the work of either professors or students of the school.  Their work features gems and stones, silver, gold, and even enamel

img_8048

 Needless to say, this was the place to find the perfect souvenir to take back home.

Posted on Leave a comment

An array of pretty earrings 

Sometimes you get on a streak of making one thing and the results are like this. All are available in the eshop! 


Posted on Leave a comment

Something pretty and sparkly


Hello friends, today I thought I’d share my first attempt to capture one of my pieces in action! The first I hope of many more videos to come.

This is a pair of gorgeous gold foil spiral shaped Venetian beads dating back to the early years of the 1900s. It’s designed to add sparkle to whatever you decide to wear! 

Posted on 1 Comment

Back in the saddle

Hello friends,  as you may have noticed, it’s been very quiet here in the blog and store front. Sometimes life takes over and work takes a backseat. However, I’m very happy to announce that I’m back!  All the charms, findings and beads that have been sitting quietly on my desk, bidding their time, will finally have their chance to shine as new pieces.

What better start than this new necklace?

The star of this necklace is quite simply the French made enamel pendant that I found last year in Paris. It dates to the 1850s and has a very pretty design of blue and pink flowers.
C
As it is pretty enough to hang on its own, I left it like that for the longest time till I found these pretty Venetian beads with a strikingly similar color scheme. Even the design of the beads match the pendant.  Coincidentally, the beads date back to the early 1900s as well. The beads and pendant seemed like a match made in heaven!

Going forward there will be a lot more new pieces coming. And I hope to unveil soon, a new and exciting line of pieces that I’ve never done yet! Stay tuned!

 

Posted on Leave a comment

Vintage find

IMG_7853.JPG

Hello friends, how is the start of your week? Over the weekend, I dropped by a local vintage show. And while there were a number of pretty things, nothing really caught my eye till almost the end.
It’s not a big thing but I was taken by this vintage earring case from the 60s. In fact the woman running the booth takes little forgotten objects, like this earring case, and refurbishes them to give them a second life. So this earring case is a little beat up but I like the idea of finding some use for it. And wouldn’t you know it, it’s perfect for storing little beads. I’m constantly dropping the small ones all over the floor and this container makes it easier to keep track of them.
IMG_7852.JPG

Posted on Leave a comment

Telling a story

IMG_7717.JPG

Once, on a flea market jaunt in Paris, I found a small bag of vintage charms. It was a group of various charms with no apparent unifying theme. All I was told was that it had been part of a much bigger jar of charms and that over the years, people would buy one or two depending on what they were looking for. What was left when I finally came along included a seashell, a pair of scissors, a dog, some zodiac signs, an apple and a star. It’s a completely random group right?
And because of its randomness, I couldn’t see how I could make a charm bracelet out of it. After all, charm bracelets are supposed to tell something about the person wearing it right?
Today, I took out the bag and thought that I was going about it the wrong way. Instead of forcing a theme, I thought I’d just pick out the charms randomly and allow them to tell a story.
So this bracelet is my first attempt. It’s got a dog, a letter B, a pair of scissors and the bust of a young lady. I’m thinking this bracelet belongs to someone who likes dogs (kinda obvious?), and whose name starts with a B. Maybe this person sews a lot hence the scissors or maybe she’s a hair stylist. I haven’t quite figured out the bust. Seen this way, the charms aren’t so random anymore.
What do you think? Can you tell a story with this bracelet?

Posted on Leave a comment

My lucky finds

Hello friends, as promised from the last post, I wanted to share what I ultimately brought home from the antique show. And this post even has a touch of Throwback Thursday to it too!

Despite wanting to carry home a bunch of those pretty compact cases, I was very reasonable in my purchases.  One find which I couldn’t leave behind was not even actively for sale. The dealer had actually bought the item for another dealer in the show but she was not completely convinced about taking it with her. Well, I had no problem taking it with me as this chain is an original Mirian Haskell chain necklace from the 40s! It is quite rare to find one of her chains as most of what is available are the more ornate and complicated necklaces. This one for all its apparent simplicity is really wonderfully made. Each link has a wonderful design that still looks as well made as the day it first made its appearance.

IMG_7079

Just look at the design of each link. I haven’t quite decided if this is going to the keep -for- me pile or to the work-pile.

IMG_7080

The second find took me completely by surprise.  But first a story… a few years back, at a small brocante in Paris, I came across someone selling trinkets and while most of the stuff for sale was not really antique or even vintage, there was one pendant that stood out from the rest.  It was this gorgeous violet glass pendant.  It was quite a big one, four inches long and beautiful with its carved surface.   It was also in impeccable condition, without a nick or scratch on it and the vendor had no idea where it was from and how it had come to him. As soon as got home, I did some research and found that it was Czech made and was probably from the 20s.  Its design was very typical of those times.  I was elated with this find and ended up making a long necklace with it.  And if I’m being perfectly honest, I sometimes regret that I sold the necklace.

DSCN1772

Fast forward to last weekend and this is what I see in one of the booths..

IMG_7082

Its the twin to my Parisian find! Except for the color, it is exactly the same, down to the bead cap!  I literally couldn’t believe my eyes.   That was probably the fastest sale ever made in that booth because I didn’t even stop to ask for the price or ask anything about it. I just said I was taking it!  After all, how could I not?

Czech pendants

Posted on 1 Comment

Recent finds

IMG_6793.JPGHello friends, as promised from the last post, I wanted to share with you my finds from the Bead Bonanza.  There were a ton of beads but I wanted to focus just on the few stands selling old or vintage beads.  The first beads I found were a pair of silver enameled beads dating approximately back to the late 60s.  I loved their swirly pattern and the way they catch the light and how the pattern on each wasn’t identical. I can perfectly imagine turning these beads into earrings.

The next find came unexpectedly from a big bead store selling a huge selection of new beads. I was extremely tempted by all the beautiful Czech glass beads as well as Swarovski but alas, I had to pass on those beauties. Sometimes I have a hard time turning away from all the new glass beads because they are beautiful and perhaps I will incorporate them one day in my work, but for now, I’ve decided to work exclusively with old or vintage beads.  I was about to leave when I caught sight of a small tray filled with what looked like various charms and findings.  It was here that I struck gold because this was the vintage tray selection! I found a beautiful pendant, two pearl beaded beads and this steel cut buckle in this tray. The pendant and beads date back to the 50s and the buckle could be older and was made in France. I can’t wait to get to work on these!

IMG_6791-0.JPG

Just before leaving the booth, I spotted some of the chains they had for sale. One chain in particular caught my eye–a chain made of red evil eye charms.  Now, there’s nothing vintage about this chain and it isn’t even the traditional blue color of the talisman but I think its really pretty.  I bought some to experiment with though I can already tell that whatever I make with this chain will not be for sale.

IMG_6794.JPG

And finally we come to my most favorite purchase of the afternoon. One of the stands was selling a lifetime’s worth of beads and jewelry and one of the pieces for sale was this necklace with a fish tail pendant.  The seller didn’t have much much information about the necklace, other than the fact that it comes from Nagaland and we spent a good ten minutes trying to google some information about it.  Something about this necklace fascinates me no end.  I think it might be the unexpected combination of glass beads in such bright colors with a fish tail!  As soon as I got home, I dug out all my books on Southeast Asian jewelry but so far, I haven’t found any anything resembling my necklace. I’m intrigued enough by this necklace that I ordered a few books on the Naga culture from the library. I can’t wait to find out more about it. In the meantime, I have to find an outfit that goes with it!

IMG_6786.JPG

Posted on Leave a comment

A visit to an antique flea market

IMG_6565.JPGHello dear friends,  I hope you had a wonderful and restful weekend!  It was a pretty quiet one chez nous though I did manage to go to a flea market.  Its been awhile since I did a flea market post and today, I thought I’d share with you some of the more interesting items that I saw.

The first item that caught my eye was this vintage Barbie board game from the 60s. I have never seen a Barbie board game before and this one was in wonderful condition.  There are tokens for 4 players and the winner gets to be …drumroll please…Queen of the Prom!! It looked like a fun enough game and I hesitated long and hard about whether I should get it. Finally, I put it down because I kept thinking about the kind of message this kind of game would send to a little girl.  Would it be a good or bad message?  At the end of the day, its just a game and probably good for a laugh but I’ll leave this question to be answered by another…

I noticed that a number of booths were carrying commemorative pins such as this one and I loved how they’re packed individually.  This booth had literally boxes and boxes of pins and it made me wonder how long they’d been collecting them?

IMG_6566.JPG

Another seller I saw collects vintage linens, some of which date back to the early years of the 20th century.  She had the brilliant idea of turning some of them into pretty little pouches.  Made to keep your delicate little unmentionables, no two pouches were alike and they hark back to a more genteel time.

IMG_5097.JPG

Funnily enough, I didn’t find anything beads or findings that  I could really use for work. I did find these books though that are perfect for work.  I am especially excited to dive into the book on American jewelry. Most of my jewelry library is concentrated on European jewelry so I’m certain that this new one will be an important one to fill gaps in my jewelry education. And yes, I bought a book on hankies, I couldn’t resist because I love hankies and who knew there would be a book on that! As for the lace book, how could I pass it up given that my last puchase was…IMG_6577.JPG.. this beautiful handmade 1940s lace jacket.   I had to have it even though it is probably the most impractical, most delicate thing I could add to my garde-robe.  

IMG_6576.JPG

 No matter, its beauty justifies itself.   Do you often get the impulse to buy something just because it is beautiful? Tell me I’m not alone.

Posted on Leave a comment

Monday’s desk

IMG_6532.JPGHello friends, how is the start of your week?

Last week, I finished a number of pieces using some trade beads (see post here).  This week, I am inspired by these pretty French vintage charms from the 50s. I bought these in a Parisian brocante, and I’ve been hoarding them like a miser does with his gold.  I would bring them out, admire them, then back into the bead box they go!  There’s just something so charming and cheerful with them. But now, more than three years (I did say I was hoarding them!) after buying them, I’m finally ready to make something with them.  Can’t wait to show you how they turn out!

Posted on Leave a comment

Monday’s desk

20140728-104738-38858582.jpg

Hello friends, how is the start of your week? I too, am back at my work desk, sorting out beads and things to make lovely new pieces. Today, I thought I’d show you what I have lined up .  First up are these vintage charms that I think would make lovely focal pieces. The big cross is composed of lovely green glass and dates back to the 40s while the guilloche pendant is actually a small perfume dispenser from the late 30s. Aren’t they pretty?   The enamel pair is a bit of a mystery. I haven’t quite figured out where it was made though it has a vaguely Asian air to it.  I was quite attracted to it because of its lovely vibrant color. I’m thinking of making some simple earrings with them.

20140728-104737-38857729.jpg

My week wouldn’t be complete of course without some beads! This group of four big beads are all from Murano, Italy and features their distinctive gold foil work.  They date back to the 60s.   Now I love gold foil beads but there’s something quite special about the  black and white striped bead.  This one is definitely a pendant don’t you think? 20140728-105306-39186922.jpgAnd finally, some pretty pink beads that are going to be all dressed up with some gold bead caps. Perhaps there will be earrings from this group or a pendant. The possibilities are endless…

Posted on 1 Comment

Friday fun plus links

20140328-111432.jpg

 

Its the weekend! Or almost!!  What fun things have you got planned? Going around the stores, I noticed loads of Easter decorations. I suppose its not too early to get started on those preparing those adorable Easter baskets, bunnies included. For my part, I think I’m on the right track thanks to my find from yesterday’s shopping tour which you can read about here. I found these  adorable vintage nesting eggs from Vintage Vogue and they’re perfect for an Easter Egg hunt!

So I thought I’d do a round up of interesting reads to share with you all on this rainy Friday…

Who likes Legos? If you are, check out the BrickBash

Are you a beauty products fiend? There’s a new kid on the block, thanks to the arrival on the scene of an old Parisian brand– L’Officine Universelle Buly brand…

Interestingly enough,  some folks prefer to look to Etsy for their beauty needs. If you are, then this is an interesting read from the New York Times

Still on Etsy, there’s a great post on How To Use Instagram for Marketing.   I wasn’t entirely convinced about Instagram but a friend of mine (thanks to D!) convinced me to try it and I love it! Its a wonderful way to visually share your world and its a great place to find inspiration.  And now, a useful post for all business owners. Read it here.

Hope you have fun with these articles! Have a good weekend everyone!

 

 

 

 

Posted on Leave a comment

Continuing the theme from yesterday

Hello friends, I was going to do a Wordless Wednesday post but decided to continue my theme from yesterday instead. I love this next find of mine. It’s a vintage wooden bag and what makes it nice is it’s decoupage front. I wish I could capture it better so you could see how much depth it has, it’s almost like a diorama. I love the 3D effect of the bag.
I was so curious about this bag and as it turns out, bags like this were really popular in the 50s till about the 70s and this particular scene is taken from the work of Anton Pieck. He was an early 20th century Dutch painter whose works were marked by its fairytale like quality.
Isn’t it really pretty?

20131023-174537.jpg

Posted on 1 Comment

Some recent finds

Hello friends, it’s been awhile since I did a flea market finds post so today I thought I’d share some recent finds.
Recently, I’ve been super lucky to have found some wonderful vintage children’s books.
I found The Magic Garden and In The Nursery, books edited by Olive Dupre Miller from The Book House for Children. I didn’t know this company at all and it turns out that this company was founded by Ms. Miller who wanted to publish children’s books according to her strict standards. She wanted to provide the best literature for children which would help the child develop good values.
They contain gorgeous stories and rhymes and are beautifully illustrated. Even after all this time, the colors are still very vibrant and alive. Just look at these illustrations

20131022-200708.jpg

20131022-200731.jpg

20131022-200954.jpg

20131022-201119.jpg

I lucked out even more when I found a children’s book with decorations by Maurice Sendak. It’s called The Animal Family by Randall Jarrell and it was published in 1965. I don’t know this author and I’m really looking forward to reading this book! Here are some of Maurice Sendak’s illustrations..

20131022-201659.jpg

20131022-201729.jpg

Posted on Leave a comment

At work

Hello friends, after last weekend’s show I’m back on my desk, working on some new pieces. I’m excited about some vintage filigree findings and charms that I bought during my last trip in Paris. These date back to the 50s. I love filigree. There’s something timeless about them and I find them so delicate and ladylike as well. Can’t wait to see how they turn out.

20131016-172625.jpg

20131016-172831.jpg

Posted on Leave a comment

Finally, a desk

Hello friends, how is your weekend so far? I hope you are all enjoying it.  Remember all those desk candidates that I wrote about here? Well, I’ve been keeping an eye out and yesterday I saw this one..

work desk

 

It is a vintage one from the 50s, maybe 60s and constructed completely out of wood.  Its probably made out of ash hence the lighter, more golden color and it has acquired some nice patina.   It still has its original handles and I like that there are drawers on each side. It has a big enough surface for me to work on my jewelry and the drawers are perfect for putting away the numerous bits and pieces that I constantly need.

Best of all the price was more than reasonable so I didn’t hesitate a second further. And so friends, my quest for a work desk is done and I can finally start making a nice work space for me.

Now if I could just find a chair to go with this table….

Posted on 2 Comments

Finds from the Midlands Antique Show

guild painting

Yesterday I talked about visiting the Midlands Antique Fair and my search for a work table. Unfortunately I didn’t find a table but I didn’t come home empty-handed. I found myself purchasing some vintage frames. One is this really pretty pastel water-color from the 1930s.  There is something so delicate about this one and I love how girly it is-the pretty pink dress, the handsome prince on the white horse. It might be a tad too retro since  women have come a long way from the days of princes on white horses but that hasn’t stopped me from liking this painting nonetheless.

la mode illustree

My other find consisted of two framed  La Mode Illustree fashion plate engravings.  La Mode Illustree was a fashion magazine that ran in the late 1900s and they featured the very latest in Victorian fashion and accessories. Each issue came with a fashion plate.  I’ve long wanted something like this but I’ve always put off buying them. This time it seemed like the good time to buy them.

I especially like this one below.  I love how the seated woman in blue has an air of purposeful calm while the other gazes straight back at the viewer.  I like that they are wearing embroidered dresses and one seems to be working on a hat.  La Mode Ilustree became very popular  because it provided women with patterns they could use to make their own clothes.  They featured the very latest in fashion from Paris.  Women may have come a long way from those times but these magazines still provide us with a look into the latest fashions. Like it or not we still look at them to be inspired and to get ideas about what to wear. anais toudouze

Funnily enough this one is signed by Anais Toudouze who was one of the leading illustrators of the magazine. I have no idea the actual age  or value of my engravings.  I would say that they are framed reproductions from the 50s of the original 19th century engravings. But what if its an original?