Tag Archives: Jewelry

T for Tiara (Art Nouveau – #AtoZChallenge)


by Lillian Csernica on April 24, 2017

t

957c454a35ce96614abc9386ffc76dd3

jewelsdujour.com

fa2bc59c3edabf6e426fe9b0e32b8051

beautyblingjewelry.tumblr.com

A cyclamen tiara by Faberge. In the late 19th Century it was quite fashionable to have tiaras that could also be worn as necklaces.

e4f875dccef766c745bd7fefb38e240e

coloreddiamond.info

House/Maker Henri Sandoz Period Art Nouveau circa 1900. Origin Paris, France. Setting Yellow and green gold, unsigned.

a482142d57a4b9b360c51eb7fa450d30

pinterest.com

A belle epoque diamond and pearl aigrette, circa 1900, by Cartier. A tiara that can be hung with either sixteen pear-shaped diamonds and sixteen similarly shaped natural pearls. Though the diamond version does have an extra pear-shaped diamond that hangs down to rest on the forehead. (Don’t you just love having that kind of flexibility in your bling?)

5e487b46e0d628b68be8d87e364aff28

beautyblingjewelry.tumblr.com

A unusual belle epoque tiara, 1900, by Boucheron. In some ways a very Art Nouveau design, with large diamond leaves intertwining sinuously with diamond berries.

79b470a671ce064561dd6f33cb423cde

sothebys.com

Gold, enamel, and mother of pearl. Made by A & J Smith, United Kingdom, circa 1900.

e00c0badb43d2dc92ddadd36ed8633db

costumehistory.tumblr.com

Gold, enamel, pearls and diamonds. Rene Lalique, France, circa 1900.

 

6 Comments

Filed under #atozchallenge, Art Nouveau, artists, Blog challenges, creativity, history, Lillian Csernica, nature

M is for Mother of Pearl


by Lillian Csernica on April 15, 2017

m

 

9e0e8af178d73738989b39e7af5b591a

mona-mina.tumblr.com

Russian art nouveau necklace.

Antique French 19th Century Palais Royal Trinket. Mother of pearl shell, a servant bell, ormolu, and a bird.

fc7e1c55ec27554fd5a508e8bb853822

artnouveaustyle.tumblr.com

The “Dawn and Twilight Bed” made by Emile Galle in 1904. Rosewood, ebony, mother of pearl, and glass. From Art Nouveau Style:

The bed symbolizes dusk, dawn and life. Dusk is a butterfly at the headboard with a landscape of night. Dawn is a butterfly at the foot of the bed, illustrating the renewal of the day. The crystal part of Dawn is said to represent life as a “cosmogenic egg”.

3ea9329b1995a12863500b546cf2ac5b

sothebys.com

Gold, mother of pearl and opal pendant by Archibald Knox for Liberty & Co., circa 1900.

 

google-afbeeldingen-resultaat-voor-57

foter.com

Art nouveau figural table lamp by Gustave Gurschner. Bronze with patina and two nautilus shells polished to reveal the mother of pearl. Circa 1900.

6624e1a5d60e932b728346ffc50e793a

ebay.com

Art Nouveau French buttons. Silver filigree encases purple abalone, a member of the nacre or mother of pearl family.

e73d041c99203ae418e9c2fe93716cb9

zsuzsanna szabo

Mother of Pearl hair comb.

Save

3 Comments

Filed under #atozchallenge, Art Nouveau, artists, Blog challenges, creativity, fantasy, history, nature

H is for Hair (Art Nouveau – #AtoZChallenge)


by Lillian Csernica on April 10, 2017

h

For those who don’t know me, I have long hair all the way down to my hips. My romance heroines have long hair. That’s appropriate to the time periods I prefer, plus there is a lot more romantic potential in grooming long hair, pinning it up, letting it tumble down, etc.

The jewelers who favored Art Nouveau designs enjoyed working with women’s hair, whether up, down, or something entirely different!

4b0902e53557ce71b652c39208cb550a

pearl-nautilus.tumblr.com

Art Nouveau pendant “Poésie” by Paul and Henri Vever, Paris, circa 1900

Unger Bros., sterling silver brooch, circa 1900.

04d51222d1b291fa1e8c5660d59665d1

kart773.ru

Gold, enamel, diamond, emerald, pearl.

4820e072ff4b74a1c2287afb563655b4

tademagallery.com

Gilded silver locket with chalcedony. German, 1900.

Sterling silver brooch. Unger Bros.

45c8a3d39909b952108dd978bd3c3085

boston.com

Gold, enamel, diamond, and pearl. French, 1900.

Save

4 Comments

Filed under #atozchallenge, Art Nouveau, artists, classics, creativity, fairy tales, fantasy, history, mother, nature, romance

B is for Bat (Art Nouveau – #AtoZChallenge)


by Lillian Csernica on April 3, 2017

b

Of the many popular motifs in Art Nouveau jewelry, I have to say bats are among the strangest. Flowers? Sure. Insects? OK. Abstract geometric designs? No problem. But bats?

Thanks to the erudite Jewelry Nerd, you will find some possible answers here.

There are plenty of examples of this particular critter done in various precious metals and gems. I’ve included only a few. I guess the fashionable ladies of La Belle Epoque must have included some Goths!

tumblr_nj4h95iqtr1s1oyoao1_500

beautyblingjewelry.tumblr.com

Bat pin of plique-a-jour enamel, pearl, diamond, with ruby eyes, 18k gold, 4″ wing span

tumblr_inline_mrytxkxlt71qz4rgp

jewelrynerd.tumblr.com

70caaa6491acbfc9d496eb3144ead426

pinterest.com

Bracelet by Philippe and Marcel Wolfers.

From 1stdibs.com: “A superb and iconic art nouveau portrayal of a Parisian goddess of the Demi-Monde. She has style roots going back to the Babylonian goddess Ishtar. The very revealing décolleté, flowing hair, bat wings and diamond Aurora head dress suggestively alludes to pagan pleasures and entertainments of the night, the practitioners only heading home with the dawn.”

tumblr_nzcmzpbqtu1rksrpco1_1280

detournementsmineurs.tumblr.com

Art Nouveau Japanese Inlaid Damascene “Bat and Crescent” necklace in gold and silver.

9576b9cf0cd40bd9b3fd4b2af7478de5

r.ebay.com

Art nouveau Czech bat pin with vaseline rhinestones.

Yes, that’s right. Vaseline rhinestones. Prior to the Cold War, jewelers could use uranium in the creation of certain types of art glass. The results resembled the appearance of the petroleum jelly as it was produced at that time.

Save

6 Comments

Filed under Art Nouveau, art show, artists, Blog challenges, classics, creativity, fantasy, Halloween, history, Horror, Japan, research

A is for Amethyst


by Lillian Csernica on April 1, 2017

a

Welcome to Day One of the Great A to Z Blog Challenge!

Purple is my favorite color, so amethyst has always been one of my favorite semiprecious stones. Amethyst appears quite frequently in both Art Nouveau and Art Deco designs.

 

14k gold, amethyst, enamel, and pearl.

 

tumblr_lor0feaicr1qd9qfro1_400

temmy17tummy.tumblr/com

 

rene-lalique-pendant-de-cou

anra.alsace.over-blog.com

 

 

a093f3d9a3a0fcfbd14df45a023f3296

alaintruong.com

18-karat yellow gold bib necklace with round brilliant-cut diamonds, and transluscent, plique-à-jour enamel flowers, with amethyst accents.

 

12 Comments

Filed under artists, Blog challenges, creativity, fantasy, history, nature, romance

The A to Z Blog Challenge Theme Reveal!


by Lillian Csernica on March 21, 2017

thmrevel

Once again I shall be celebrating the arrival of Spring by participating in the A to Z Blog Challenge. This will be my fourth year, and I look forward to even more fun and meeting new friends.

In past years, my themes have included Travel Adventures, Unusual Items Made of Chocolate, and Bad Sword & Sorcery Movies.

This year I will be bringing you eye candy taken from another one of my secret passions:

sm2bart2bnouveau2bheading-min

Jewelry, housewares, and a few other surprises, at least one for every letter of the alphabet! I’ll be looking forward to your comments!

erte1

Save

9 Comments

Filed under artists, Blog challenges, chocolate, creativity, fantasy, Goals, history, Lillian Csernica, romance, travel, Writing

E is for Eiffel Tower


by Lillian Csernica on April 6, 2016

paris-freeimages-benjamin-thorn

The one weekend I spent in Paris included a trip to the foot of the Eiffel Tower.  Staring straight up through the tower to its very top was such a dizzying experience I didn’t dare ascend to view the City of Lights from that historic height.

looking-up-to-the-eiffel-tower-in-paris-at-night-ejcm8b

The bus tour of Paris I’d taken allowed us a chunk of time on Sunday afternoon to go shopping.  I wanted a gold pendant of the Eiffel Tower for my mother.  Off I went through a department store.  Mind you, I was 18 then, and the extent of my French was “Parlez-vous Anglais?”  More often than not, I got a curt “Non.”

When I finally found the jewelry department, I also found a sales woman who clearly did not like the sight of me nor the sound of my bad French accent.  At that point I’d had more than enough of being dismissed.   It is an unfortunate truth, but if there is one language universally spoken by salespeople, it is that of Money.   I took out my entire supply of traveler’s checks, fanned them out, held them up to Madame Francais, and asked, “Parlez-vous American Express?”

She was quickly replaced by Raoul, a charming young man who spoke perfect British English and was the soul of courtesy.  He showed me the range of pendants available, from one as tiny as my little fingernail to one big enough to land a swordfish!

s-l300

I exchanged the appropriate amount of traveler’s checks, made my purchase, and departed feeling victorious.  When it comes to making my mother happy, do not mess with me! 😀

131537178174113415536_article-0-0da4d21100000578-595_634x953

55075507.at.webry.info

 

 

12 Comments

Filed under Blog challenges, dreams, Family, family tradition, frustration, Goals, history, Humor, Lillian Csernica, mother, travel, Writing

Historical Writing: Always an Adventure!


by Lillian Csernica on August 5, 2014

 

Why do I write about history?

History gives me an opportunity to get the big picture on how different countries have tried to make different strategies work. Economic strategies, military strategies, and the more cultural and artistic strategies that come under the heading of fashion.

A good example is Scotland. Not the wealthiest of countries, Scotland has a long history of internal clan conflicts and the border wars with England. The weather in Scotland tends toward clouds and rain. Sheep do well on the landscape of Scotland, so you see a lot of wool in their clothing styles, notably the kilt. I know a lot of people who have spent a great deal of time looking up their family tartans. The truth is, clan tartans are an invention of the Victorian period. This is one of those nasty facts that bursts the romantic bubble of many an amateur historian.  At one time the Scots believed carrying the paw of a mole in one’s sporran would protect against rheumatism, a common ailment in that climate.

I’ve written often about my fondness for Japan. Feudal Japan was an era of strict social classes, laws about fashion, and precise rules about social etiquette. While the tyranny of the Tokugawa Shogunate was eventually its own undoing, I must confess I find a certain comfort in having so many matters of culture spelled out for me. Modern Japanese also enjoy the two-edged sword of knowing exactly who they are and where they stand in whatever social context they find themselves. In the time of the Tokugawa, clothing, hairstyles, personal ornamentation, and weaponry were the indicators of social position. I find it one of history’s most humorous moments to see all that grandeur reduced to the common everyday business card. That has become the crucial indicator of status and context for the Japanese. Westerners are advised to bring plenty of their own. Otherwise there are business available to produce cards very quickly with one side in English and the other in Japanese.

tvtropes.org

I write romance novels, so I get to take a close look at the techniques of wooing in various times and places. Medieval Europe had the concept of courtly love.  Eleanor of Aquitaine’s daughter by Louis VII of France was largely responsible for this idea. Knights were measured against the Code of Chivalry to see if they met the beau ideal of those times. The real purpose of the concept of courtly love was education in respectable deportment.  Bored noblewomen can be dangerous noblewomen, as Eleanor of Aquitaine herself proved on more than one occasion.

From About.Com, Medieval History:

“The woman was Eleanor’s daughter (from her previous marriage to King Louis VII of France), Marie de Champagne, and she had come to Poitiers to take charge of the education and training of the young people at the palace. She had her work cut out for her. The Poitevins had not been accustomed to the ways of court life for generations: the young men were boisterous, bragging warriors; the young women had led isolated lives and were free at last from the confines of the family estate. Religious study had not taught these pubescent pupils how to behave. Marie realized that a subject that could hold their interest was necessary to use as a vehicle through which they could be taught manners and respect. One subject sprang immediately to mind.”

Novels from the Regency and Victorian periods entertain me because they’re all about clothes and money. Social position is the bottom line, and so many of the characters are looking to trade up. Finding someone you can love for the rest of your life is nowhere near as important as finding someone with a respectable income of so many hundreds or thousands of pounds per year. In my own mind I often encounter a struggle between the romantic and the pragmatist.  I may know how history worked in real life in a given period, but that doesn’t mean I have to adhere strictly to realism.  A romance novel is, after all, escapist literature.  When I run away from home through a book, I want the author to make the trip worthwhile!  And so I do my best when choosing romance over realism and sentiment over survival.

Oddly enough, ancient history holds little appeal for me. The mysteries of ancient Egypt focus so much on the afterlife. I know more than I ever wanted to about the process of mummification. I find it interesting that the Egyptian gods have animal heads, also found in the Hindu pantheon. What does this similarity mean? What exchange of culture might have gone on that modern archaeologists have yet to discover? As with so many cultures, the most noteworthy people are the upper classes, especially the royalty. The lower classes, especially the slaves, had a hard life. Not a lot of romance there for me. I can’t stand desert climates.

One of the most fascinating aspects of history is food. For the first romance novel I ever wrote, I had to go looking for Basque cookbooks because the novel was set in Navarre. It took quite some doing, but I finally discovered what my heroine would have for breakfast: chestnuts boiled in milk and sprinkled with nutmeg. Compare that with the necessity in Egypt of having many festal days where the upper classes distributed beer and bread to the lower classes. If not for that, many people of the lower classes in Egypt would have starved to death. In Medieval Europe, bread, watered wine, ale, meats such as venison, game birds, and roast pork, and large wheels of cheese made up the main meal. I do have a number of cookbooks that provide recipes from the Middle Ages. The key difference in culinary art between the Middles Ages and the Renaissance came down to the use of spices. The Middle Ages saw lots of spices thrown in for rich flavors. Renaissance cooking became more selective, creating unique dishes centered around particular flavor combinations. My research in this area taught me the pleasure of chicken prepared with cinnamon.

Then there’s jewelry. I could go on and on about the delights of dressing up my heroes and heroines in the bijouterie of their particular time periods. From the hair ornaments of the geisha to the cameos of the Victorian period, from the jeweled inlays of the Egyptian pectoral collars to the prayer ropes of the Middles Ages made from ivory beads or garnets or even pearls, the treasure chests of history are overflowing with splendor and detail. I once visited the Smithsonian Institution and saw the earrings of Marie Antoinette. How she didn’t end up with earlobes stretched like King Tut’s I’ll never know.

History is full of little questions like this, alongside the larger mysteries. And so with every novel I go exploring!

Leave a comment

Filed under Fiction, Goals, history, Japan, love, marriage, romance, Writing

The Silver Marriage Medal


by Lillian Csernica on July 12, 2013

Busy week here.  Wednesday was my 25th Wedding Anniversary.  It’s staggering to think that much time has passed, more than half of my life.

Chris took the day off work and we spent it doing all kinds of things.  The Winchester Mystery House is every bit as grand and strange as the ads claim.  I don’t think it’s haunted, but I admit I wouldn’t want to go wandering around the place at night.  And I won’t take the basement tour, not even in broad daylight.  Hey, I write horror.  I’d scare myself silly and I know it.

In commemoration of this marital milestone, Chris gave me a sterling silver Celtic knotwork cuff bracelet.  My wedding rings are Celtic knotwork, and on my other ring finger I wear a Celtic knotwork dragon.  The first gift Chris ever gave me was sterling silver Celtic knotwork jewelry.  (Yes, it’s easy for me to accessorize!)

The big surprise was the place where Chris had made our dinner reservations.  He wouldn’t tell me the location, but I did insist on knowing how to dress.  As we pulled up to the parking structure beside the building where the restaurant sits on the top floor, I saw a sign I haven’t seen in twenty-five years.  Chris had brought us to the very fancy restaurant where we went on our first date.  Now that’s style.

I was really impressed.  Chris worked so hard to make the day so special.

2 Comments

Filed under Family, fantasy, Horror, Uncategorized, Writing