Out of the Ashes

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling, and Tuff Things

Nearly 2000 years ago, the city of Pompeii was destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius – burying it under twenty feet of volcanic ash.  The city was uncovered in 1748, and quickly became a popular stop on the Grand Tour of Europe (a “rite of passage”  for upper class young men and women that served as a liberal education).   Travelers were exposed to the cultural legacy of the Renaissance.  Most returned home with trunks overflowing with books, artwork, and small cultural artifacts like statues, paperweights, and jewelry. 

In the area around Pompeii, craftsmen utilized the lava rock, also known as tuff, and carved cameos from it.  Myriads of faces decorated rings, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.  These lava trinkets became a sign of wealth, showing that the wearer was well-traveled and possessed discerning taste. 

This necklace and earring suite is an outstanding example of these works.  I am in awe of the intricacy of the carving…  from the individual strands of hair to the veins in the grape leaves.  Just think, this was sculpted using only a handheld tool called a graver or a burin.   Even after 200 years of technological development, the most highly skilled bench jewelers could not come close to this level of skill.  It’s exceptional and extremely rare.

The serene face, the grapevine headdress, and the urns – each of these elements play at symbolism.  Grapes often suggest bounty and abundance, and occasionally fertility while leaves stand for truth.  The hanging urns are a strong indicator that this was a very early piece of mourning jewelry.  When you begin to study each detail – the exquisite carving, the near perfect condition, and the abundance of symbolism, suddenly $12,800.00 sounds like real value. 

This suite is available exclusively at Joden Jewelers.  Go to our site and look, them come to us and touch. 

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Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Shelly Isacco

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True Confessions

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling, and Sapphire Rings

I have a confession to make…  I love jewelry.  I love looking at it, I love talking about it, I love writing about it.  However – I don’t really wear it, especially lately.  It lays in piles all over our house…  four bangles and a diamond band rest beside the toaster in the kitchen.  There’s a pair of oversize silver hoops and a long necklace on the end table in the living room.  The nightstand beside my bed is littered with bobby pins, a tub of Nivea crème, and at least four pair of discarded earrings.  The older I get, the more I want to simplify my life.  Less accessories just seems easier.  There is no decision to make.  Slip my diamond studs into my ears, put on my engagement ring and wedding band, and done.  On the weekends, I only wear my wedding band.  I love the way it looks on finger all by itself.  Simple and elegant. 

I love jewelry that means something…  Personal jewelry.  The significance of my wedding rings is obvious.  My diamond earrings were a gift from my husband at a time when we really couldn’t afford luxuries.  And yet, there they were, under our Christmas tree.  Because of that, I treasure them all the more.  I’m sure that in the years to come, I will acquire another piece or two of jewelry.  I have always wanted a sapphire ring.  Nothing over the top.  Just simple and elegant. 

I love tiny details about each of these rings.  They are all Victorian rings from the late 1800’s.  The style of jewelry had become much lighter than the Mid-Victorian era.  Rings were often small with an open airy feel. 

This classic piece features an oval sapphire surrounded by an Old European Cut diamond halo.  The sapphire weighs 1.50 carats with .30 carats of diamonds.  Priced at just $1500, it’s perfect for every day wear.

 

This is my favorite.  It can easily be worn as a right hand ring or an alternative to the traditional diamond engagement ring.  The small round sapphire is a sublime shade of cornflower blue encircled by nine Old Mine Cut diamonds, each facet twinkling in the light.  I love the scrollwork that forms the prongs and graces the shoulders of this tiny enchantress.  Check it out on our site.  At $2500, it’s irresistible!

 

What’s not to love about this band style ring set with three cushion-shaped sapphires, two natural pearls, and eight rose cut diamonds?  Called a carved half hoop ring for the intricate gallery work that creates the prongs, this style was popular from the mid to late 1800’s.  It’s also available on our website, priced at only $1950.00. 

All three of these rings are simple and elegant.  I would happily  abandon any right hand ring I have for one of these antique gems.  Perhaps you would too!

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Carla Leight and Shelly Isacco

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For the Queen of Your Heart

Joden Girl

 Baubles, Bling, and Valentine Things

It seems like we have no more than packed up our Christmas decorations before Valentine’s Day is upon us.  The Christmas clearance items are on the shelves right beside the boxes of children’s Valentine cards.  For me, it’s exciting!  Valentine’s Day has always been my favorite holiday – I love the sentimentality of it.  And from everything that I’ve been reading, most of you feel the same way.  Ladies aren’t expecting expensive gifts, they are hoping for a meaningful gift.

Last year, the average amount spent on Valentine’s Day rang in at just under $150.00…  unfortunately, in today’s world, $150 doesn’t buy all that much.  Here’s where Joden comes in.  One of the things that a lot of people don’t know about us is that we truly have something for everyone.  We have a lot of really great pieces that cost less than $100. 

This photo is just one small example of what’s available at Joden.  The four rings pictured here range from $50-$150.00.  We also have countless pendants, earrings, and bracelets available in the same range.  So, if you’re looking for a Valentine’s Gift that will outlast the candy and flowers but won’t break the bank – come to Joden.

For those of you who are looking to spend a little more, we have that too.  We recently bought a couple items that are absolutely perfect for Valentine’s Day or any day.  What better way to tell her she’s the Queen of your heart than with this beautiful crown ring from Garrard?

This unique eternity ring is constructed from 18 karat white gold.  The intricate design is interspersed with tiny round melee diamonds and each point is crowned with a brilliant blue sapphire.  Priced at just under $3000, it’s fit for royalty.

    

I fell in love with these charming crown earrings the moment I saw them.  Each pair is made in 14 karat white gold accented with diamonds.  The pair on the left have Tsavorite (green) Garnet trim and the pair on the right  have Sapphire trim.  These beauties are priced at $900 a pair.  They give a fresh spin to ordinary diamond earrings. 

The possibilities are endless.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Joden is the place for you.

Send all your love, comments, and questions to carrie@joden.com.

“Go to our site and look, then come to Joden and touch.”

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Shelly Isacco

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