Monday, May 27

Summer Beaches = Seashells!

Call it the summer itch, but I am fascinated lately with the old seashell jewelry from the 50s and 60s.  Every time I hold a tiny shell in my hand, I can't help but marvel at the long path it has traveled to become a woman's trinket!

Recently I found a super website about seashells that is a fun read and very informative at the same time!  I Love Shelling is a must for your resource list!  Even with all the great pictures I still find it a task to try and name some of the tiny shells found in vintage jewelry!

 I think seashells and the whole craft of seashell art is a sleeper in our vintage business!

Friday, May 24

Researching Francis: fhb

Doing research on a mystery item mark is perhaps one of the most educational processes to engage in in the antiques business!  I am always in awe of how much you can discover with just one little starting point.

Frances Holmes BoothbyFor me, the lastest adventure revolves around a jewelry purchase last year that included a darling little sterling silver pin and drop earrings set.  The only mark is on the circles of the earrings: fhb Sterling. Sterling is also marked on the back of the screw knobs.   The set definitely has that Modernist late 50s vintage appeal.  I decided to see what I could find out.
Well, thanks to the 21st century and internet research capabilities I quickly discovered this mark belongs to Francis Holmes Boothby!  She is a well known and listed Modernist jewelry maker active in the 1950s / 1960s.  Her work pulls designs from nature and includes whimsical birds and owls as well as items using a unique convex elliptical form.    A quick search of "fhb elliptical" using Images on Google will give you more great peeks at her style. 
There is an excellent research article, The Wearable Art Movement Part II , by Marbeth Shon, at Modern   There is a short piece about Francis Homes Boothby confirming her participation in the 3rd Annual Exhibition of Contemporary Jewelry at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis in 1955.  If you love Modernist jewelry - this is a great article to review!

Although only the earrings are marked in this set, it sure seems that the pin is an unsigned fhb as well.  It is actually very small at only 29mm L x 22mm W.  The ends have her characteristic "flattened" twist changing the form from circle to ellipical.  This wonderful shape is seen in pendant and bracelet designs that she did.  But alas there is not one image on the web to make 100% confirmation --so the mystery still continues.   Is it a one of a kind?  That would be fun. 

Monday, May 20

Vintage Rising Rising!

We're having lots of fun over at The Vintage Village - especially in the group called Vintage Rising!   There are lots of new items being posted and lots of exciting things happening behind the scenes.  Here is our new logo that can now be customized for each of the merchants! This one is for my thread:

We have many members participating in this Emporium venue.  You can buy directly from the thread, contact the sellers and find links to all the different shop sites too.  If you haven't visited our new home yet make sure you stop in soon!

Thursday, May 9

Fun Networking!

Social networking is kind of a buzz word in the small business world these days.  Here is a beautiful example of how networking works among members of the Vintage Fashion Guild and Etsy shop owners!

This little pin is listed in my Etsy shop.  I love mother of pearl items from buttons to jewels.  And of course having Mother written in wire work makes it all the more special!  Pure adorable charm.

Likewise, it caught the eye of my fellow VFG member Liza of Better Dresses Vintage   Liza wrote to me expressing her interest in the photo image and asked my permission to use it.  (Perfect internet etiquette!)    Of course I was tickled, and said yes.

Through the magic of her dabbling and patience, she was able to come up with a beautiful image for her Facebook page!  Now that's what I call Social Networking 101!   Mutual sharing creates wonderful circles.  The best part is that we never really know just how far the circles reach - "it's a mystery"!