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London Buying Trip, Part III
12 / 19

 

HOME DECOR

 

I found a few minutes to stop into a few of antique and home decor stores along the way.

 

I love these crystal and glass treasures from Chloe Alberry, which specializes in interior hardware for the home (door knobs, cabinet knobs, mirrors, door plates, etc.).

 

Make your house sparkle with these door knobs that look like diamonds the size of a goose egg…

 

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

 

Captivated by this angel carved in stone, spotted at an antique shop on Golborne Road (Knotting Hill).

 

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

One of my favorite finds was at an antiques market outside of London. These ceramic black and white topped containers come with the most interesting story. This is how apothecaries and purveyors of cosmetics used to package their goods prior to the invention of modern day packaging. Once the contents were gone, they were often thrown out.

 

These have been dug up in various areas outside London. I had to snatch up the ones that held rose cream, balms, and cherry flavored toothpaste, the maker of which supplied Queen Victoria. I love almost anything with a pretty black and white pattern. They’re perfect to create a black and white vignette for your bedside table or your vanity (stash your rings, earrings, or even cotton balls or bath salts).

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

The one on the right is from Atkinsons (London 1799), the famous parfumerie is still in existence and has a perfume line named after 24 Old Bond Street. Napoleon, the duke of Wellington, Admiral Nelson, lady Hamilton, Prince Tomasi di lampedusa, Queen Margherita di Savoia, and the Tsarina of Russia, were all customers.

 

If you are interested in these antique ceramic containers, let us know and we’d be happy to check on availability and pricing with our contact in London.

 

Pair it with a black and white tray like this one below from Belissimo:

 

 

 

Courtesy of Belissimo

 

DOGS OF LONDON

 

 

I couldn’t end this series without including a bit of cute factor. Londoners love their dogs as much as we do. I am a huge fan of terriers, especially Airedales, and couldn’t resist taking these pictures.

 

Charlie the Airedale, Knotting Hill:

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Prudence Periwinkle, Portobello Road:

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Charlie Girl the Welsh Terrier, Shepperton:

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

 

We found this one and a few others at a stall on Portobello Road. They are antique prints that were hand-colored. The print has incredible detail (you can see the individual hairs on the dog’s coat). From Saint James’s Court, Fine Art Dealers, London.

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

 

12 / 17

 

ITEM OF THE WEEK: ANTIQUE VICTORIAN GOLD BUCKLE RING, HALLMARKED

 

This is a hand engraved (star in lozenge) and hand-carved (plumes) gold band ring with a buckle motif from the Victorian period. We’ve been looking for the perfect gold buckle ring for stacking and this one checks all the boxes.

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

The buckle motif has been popular throughout jewelry history. It was popular during the Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian periods (the design of the buckle changing with style and time).

 

Victorian life was filled with symbolism and jewelry was no exception. A buckle symbolized fidelity in love, or loyalty in friendship, through the joining of the two pieces. When the buckle wraps around a finger, like the serpent or snake, it can be interpreted as a symbol of eternal love (an unending circle or bond).

 

From our latest buying trip in London, this buckle ring would make a great stacking ring or wedding band.

 

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

SHOPPING IN LONDON: MUST HAVE AND LUST HAVES

 

I couldn’t leave Knotting Hill without checking out some of the vintage fashion boutiques and a few of the home design stores. Specifically on my list was Jane Bourvis (located on 89 Golborne Road, London). Known for her antique and vintage wedding dresses and accessories, she also has a selection of vintage and reproduction skirts and dresses. Brides come from all over, making appointments to carefully select one of her designs, or a one-of-a-kind vintage or antique dress.

 

For me, the inside of her boutique was like being in a candy store: lots of lovely tulle, lace, feathers, and silk. I tried on a few of her tulle skirts. I really liked the one below, a vintage black tulle skirt with gold embroidered flowers (1940′s/50′s). I would wear it over a pair of leggings and boots for winter days and perhaps over a black slip for evening.

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

 

 

Tulle for Winter


 

 

 

For details on any of the above, see Sugar et Cie on Polyvore.

 

Next stop, a stroll along Bond and New Bond street to see the latest from Mappin & Webb (dating back to 1775) and Bentley & Skinner (est. 1880). My favorite was this necklace/choker from Bentley and Skinner.

 

 

 

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

A modern piece in the vintage spirit made to represent the night sky. It is exquisite in-person, made by hand, and with more diamonds than I wanted to count. Each diamond is bezel set (millegrain edge) on a velvet ribbon in midnight-sky blue.

 

Part III, Friday: Home Decor and the Dogs of London…

11 / 21

 

SNEAK PEEK: LATE GEORGIAN/EARLY VICTORIAN GOLD BAND

 

We’ve just come back from a buying trip in England where we picked-up some unusual and interesting pieces. I’m drawn to sentimental jewelry, especially ones that allow the wearer to stash a secret message, picture, or even a bit of perfume. We couldn’t pass up this late Georgian/ early Victorian ring that appears to be a just a simple gold band ring…

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Antique Victorian Gold Band Ring

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

 

SECRET COMPARTMENT RING

 

…but, press a small button on the side and the top portion of the band opens up to reveal a hidden compartment. Enclose a message or motto written on a piece of paper or engrave a note, monogram or date on the inside of this Secret Message Ring. A great piece to wear stacked with one of our micro pave diamond bands or a pair of gem-set eternity rings, one on each side. Emerald, sapphire or ruby would all pair nicely with the warm glow of the antique gold.

 

Antique Gold Band Ring with Secret Message Compartment

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

It’s only the first part of November and already all of London is dressed up for Christmas. The streets are decorated with tinsel garlands and Liberty, Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, among others, already have elaborate winter and holiday scenes in their windows.

 

 

Double Decker Red London Buses on Regent Street, London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

In between hunting for new pieces, I had a few minutes here and there to make a few “just for fun” stops.

 

DESIGN & DECOR

 

I am obsessed with this salon chair from Christopher Howe. It can be made with one of their fabrics, in leather, or with something one-of-a-kind, like a vintage flag. I love the one in the center below with the Union Jack.

 

Union Jack Flag Salon Chair From Howe in London

 

Courtesy of Howe, London

 

UNION JACK SALON CHAIR AT CHRISTOPHER HOWE SHOWROOM

 

I stopped by the Howe showroom late on a rainy London afternoon to take a look around. Located on Pimlico Rd., the store is filled with a mix of antiques and Howe’s designs.

 

Front of Howe Show Room on Pimlico Rd. in London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

While I was there chatting, I found out that Thomas Pink had ordered chairs for their store, custom made with a pink and grey Union Jack pattern using their shirts. Later in the week, I just happened to pass by a Pink store and had to stop in to see if it was the ONE. Sure enough it was, and I snapped a picture. I’d love to have one in white linen with the union jack in hot pink and scarlet red silk.

 

Pink and Grey Union Jack Flag Chair at Pink Store in London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Options include an exposed back, if you like, and/or construction the old-fashioned way, with horse hair, said to last forever.

 

Christopher Howe Custom Salon Chairs at Pink in London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

IF IT’S SUNDAY – IT’S THE COLUMBIA ROAD FLOWER MARKET

 

Even though it’s November, London still manages to have its fair share of blooms. Every Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3-ish, the Columbia Road Flower Market comes alive. A small stretch of Columbia Road is blocked off and the street is filled with flower stalls (and a lot of people).

 

It’s a great place to stock up on flowers for the week, grab a cup of coffee, and hang out, which is what 50% of the crowd seemed to be doing on this crisp, but sunny afternoon. Not into flowers? There are a number of fun and cute boutiques to check out. Two of my favorites: Suck and Chew (candy store) and Future Vintage (fashion).

 

Purple and Pink Tulips at Columbia Road Flower Market in London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Orange and Yellow Tulips at Columbia Road Flower Market in London

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

MORE FLOWERS IN NOTTING HILL

 

We also hit Portobello Road on a Saturday. Despite the crowds later in the morning, it is my idea of heaven. Vintage fashion, great food stands and restaurants, and of course a wide range of antiques. I wanted to buy up all of the roses at this corner flower shop on one of the side streets.

 

a sea of pink roses

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

roses at corner florist in Notting Hill

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Vines growing up these plum and berry colored row houses on Portobello.

 

Colorful Row Houses Portobello Road

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

SWEET TREATS

 

I had to stop in for something warm at Fortnum & Mason, the most amazing mix of food hall, confectionery, gift emporium and cafe/tearoom/bar. I’m in love with their signature color. Depending upon the material/medium it ranges in shades from a robin’s egg blue to a turquoise blue-green to a pale mint green. I purchased a number of their biscuit (pistachio clotted cream, chocolate florentines, etc.) tins to turn into vases, a bon bon box, or possibly a velvet-lined trinket box. I haven’t quite decided.

 

Fortnum & Mason

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

The first floor at Fortnum & Mason, drooling over the jellies, Turkish Delights, chocolates, etc. in the confectionery area.

 

confectionery department at Fortnum & Mason

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Stopped for something to eat in their second floor “Palour”: cappuccino, with a mini cappuccino ice cream cone on the side, and scones with the traditional clotted cream and strawberry preserves. The best scones I have ever had!

 

scones, strawberry preserves and clotted cream at Fortnum & Mason

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Doughnuts from a food stand on Portobello Rd. They looked amazing and I so badly wanted a raspberry filled jelly, but I managed to resist.

 

Food Stands on Portobello Road

 

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

More sneak peeks and fun pics from London in Part II. Check back!

 

07 / 22

 

TRENDING – A RING FOR EVERY FINGER

 

On Saturday, we shared with you the latest addition to our Ring Collection: an Enamel Flower Ring with a European Cut Diamond, “Wild Violet” – See more at: Part 1 of Our Latest Obsession. At Sugar et Cie, we love to mix the antique, vintage & modern. Two of the jewelry trends that were big last year and that continue to stay strong are “a ring for every finger” (or at least multiple fingers) and stacking rings.

 

We’ve paired our latest creation featuring an antique enameled violet, with a stack of modern (new and can be ordered) micro-pave diamond eternity bands. They come in 18 Kt. white gold, white gold with rhodium detailing, yellow gold and rose gold.

 

Micro Pave Diamond Eternity Rings

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

You can create a number of different looks with these diamond stacking rings. Create a statement ring by stacking five or six together. Or, provide a little sparkle to any finger by wearing a single.

 

Micro Pave Diamond Eternity Rings

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Annabelle Fleur, Viva Luxury and Blair Eadie, Atlantic – Pacific, are two of our favorite fashion bloggers that also favor these trends. I love Annabelle’s ability to mix, stack, and layer jewelry. Her looks are always cohesive and polished.

 

 

Antique Enamel Flower Ring

 

Annabelle, Viva Luxury

 

 

Eadie Blair, Director at Tory Burch by day, and Fashion blogger by night, has the enviable ability to create looks that are fashion mag worthy, but not staged or over-styled.

 

Antique Enamel Flower Ring

 

Atlantic-Pacific

 

The color you pick for your nails can also make your jewelry pop! There are so many great options out there that sometimes I find it hard to choose.

 

Blue is a great pick for summer. It looks fresh, and of course it always pairs well with diamonds. Two of our favorites, periwinkle and deep violet, look great on a variety of skin tones and colors. From Essie: Lapiz of Luxury and No More Film.

 

Blue Nail Polish from Essie

 

Essie

 

07 / 19

 

ANTIQUE ENAMEL FLOWER JEWELRY

Antique Enamel Flower Ring

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

Just a month or two ago, I came across an old article about jeweled orchid brooches made by Tiffany & Co. for the Exposition Universelle in Paris 1889. They were designed by Paulding Farnham to represent 24 actual orchid species.

 

They looked so realistic that several people thought they were real. According to Sotheyby’s, a Jeweler’s Weekly article from June of 1889 described the phenomenon: “so perfectly copied after nature as to inspire unqualified admiration … to deceive the observer into a belief that real flowers have been placed in the showcases with the jewelry.” Farnham won the gold medal in jewelry for Tiffany, and catapulted his reputation and career.

 

TIFFANY’S ORCHID BROOCHES

 

Just like the orchid themselves, these jeweled, enamel over gold brooches and hair ornaments, were created in a range of colors from the palest of pastels to the most deeply saturated of jewel tones. Since each orchid represented a different orchid species, each had a unique color scheme.

 

Visions of sugar plums, or rather delicate candy-colored flowers, began to dance in my head. Unfortunately, Tiffany’s orchids are hard to find and command steep prices at auction. A lemon yellow, chartreuse, orange, and cream colored example sold last year at Sotheby’s for $173,00, 44% over the high estimate.

 

HAND CANDY

 

I knew I wanted to have an enameled flower ring for Sugar et Cie and modern day versions just didn’t fit with my vision. They were either too shiny (the antique ones I favor have a velvety matte finish). Or they looked like they belonged on a greeting card instead of freshly plucked from a garden.

 

Antique Enamel Flower Ring

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

As it turns out, enameled pansies and violets from the Victorian and Edwardian period were the answer. More plentiful (made by a variety of jewelers from the period), less elaborate, and less expensive than the Tiffany’s gem, they make the perfect flower for the finger. The only downside is that the more unusual the color and the better the condition, the harder they are too find (and the higher the price).

 

This wild violet (circa 1910) in enamel over 14 Kt., flower ring is the first in what I hope is a series for Sugar et Cie.

 

Antique Enamel Flower Ring

© Copyright Sugar et Cie 2014

 

… more to come in our second installment on Tuesday, so check back!