Victoria’s Legacy

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling, and Sentimental Things

I am completely enamored with this Victorian bracelet…  from end to end, it is filled with enchanting details.  The top and side edges are deeply etched with hand engraved patterns that feature a repetitive leaf-like design.  The center is accented with a small square stone of the palest blue surrounded by a carved quatrefoil flower.  

And the back portion reveals the most significant engraving of all, the name of the owner…  “Patricia Finnell”.  As soon as I discovered her name, I wanted to know all about her.  Alas, no matter how many times or ways I googled her name, Patricia Finnell remains a mystery to me.  Closer inspection unveiled another enigma, the center octagon is actually a locket!  

Lockets peaked in popularity during the mid-1800s after Prince Albert gifted Queen Victoria with one at the birth of their first child.  He presented her with a similar charm at each new birth, resulting in a lovely bracelet with nine brightly colored enamel heart lockets…  each one featured a delicate curl of hair as well as the name and birth date of the child.  So romantic!  As such, locket jewelry became the “must have” accessory of the Victorian era.  

Look what (or should I say who!) I discovered inside our bracelet…

This handsome devil must be our Patricia’s sweetheart, and most likely the one who presented her with this sentimental love token.  Perhaps he was going off to war and wanted to leave her with a memento in case he didn’t return.  Or perhaps theirs was a secret love and only Patricia would know that his picture was hidden inside.  I can’t decide if I want to know the answers or if it’s more fun to dream up tragically romantic scenarios!  

Perchance someone out there can shed some light on this puzzle, or maybe it’s destined to remain a secret with the only clue being this bracelet.  My husband would say that I’ve read one too many romance novels, but I can’t help but be infatuated with this 150-year-old love story.  If you, too, are enchanted, you could become the caretaker of Patricia and her locket bracelet for just $1,450.  

“You can go to a museum and look, or come to Joden and touch.”

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Dana Jerpe

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Joe’s Special Box – Volume 58

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling, and A Collector’s Things

Not all the treasures at Joden are hidden in Joe’s Special Box, in fact, our crowning glory is in the store for all to see.  We have one of the largest collections of the work of Carlo Giuliano in the country.  Giuliano was the favored jeweler to Queen Victoria.  His elaborately enameled creations are widely considered to be some of the finest pieces in all of jewelry history.  At Joden, we are curators of the past – cultivating passion for this lost art.  

Most of the exceptional examples from the life and work of Carlo Giuliano feature striking enamel patterns – most notably crisp black and white designs like the one shown here.  Careful consideration should be given to how very precise the tiny dots are…  not once do they fade into the white background.  Never before and never again was this process able to be duplicated – it is exclusive to the Giuliano firm. 

When this bracelet made it’s way into our store last week, every one of us was certain it was Giuliano.  We searched every link for the classic Giuliano trademark…  never to find it.  There is not one single hallmark anywhere to be found on this Art Nouveau beauty.  Is it un-signed Giuliano?  Joe’s theory is that it was made by an apprentice…  a young artist learning the art of the master.  In any case, this bracelet is in pristine condition and is absolutely stunning.  It’s available now for $8800.00.

“You can go to a museum and look, or come to us and touch.”

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Dana Jerpe

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Windows to the Soul

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling, and Lover’s Things

Called a lover’s eye, or an eye miniature, these are some of the rarest and highly collectible pieces of antique jewelry. Just as their name states, they are tiny watercolor paintings (most often done on ivory) of an eye… and nothing else.  The painting is usually surrounded by a decorative frame and covered with a piece of protective glass.  You may be wondering, “Why just an eye?”

Sources say that the eye belonged to a loved one, usually a forbidden love.  It was believed that if the painting only featured an eye, it would be nearly impossible to identify who is depicted.  Because in the case of a clandestine affair, anonymity is everything.  Only the person wearing the piece would know the secret identity.  Very romantic…

Most lover’s eyes were made from the late 1700’s to the early 1800’s.  Experts believe that fewer than 1000 of them are still in existence.  Here at Joden, we have three.  The one pictured above has already been purchased by a private collector, these two are available now. 

 

Near the end of the 1800’s, Queen Victoria revived the lover’s eye.  However, Victoria had them created of all of her loved ones:  her children, family, and friends.  Often, they became mourning jewelry, as many of them featured a hair receiver on the back.  The use of pearls often symbolized tears.  What a beautiful treasure!

 

Come to Joden to see these incredible love tokens,  and remember…

“You can go to a museum and look, or you can come to Joden and touch.”

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Shelly Isacco

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