When I was faced with the burden of only being able to bring 30 kg of luggage with me to a new country for a year, as a girl, I was freaking out to say the least.
The easiest part was the clothes,but the next step, my accessories was going to be the challenge. As a vintage enthusiast I often opt for buying second hand jewels at thrift stores, open-air markets or antique stores, which has resulted into a collection filled with an array of trinkets and baubles fit for any occasion.The unique problem that I was facing, was that I couldn’t possibly bring everything with me to South Korea and so the choice was made easier by the melancholy that pulled at my heart strings when I was faced with the idea of greeting my family and country for a year. I would only take things with me that hold a special meaning.
Personal jewelry, be it a ring passed down from a loved one or a sentimental purchase on a dream vacation, has a way of giving you that something that one so often need in today’s society. Authenticity, a memory uniquely yours. The comfort of touching your grandmother’s ring , when you are feeling down or to look down and see your name on a bracelet with an inscription from your father has a way of lifting the spirit on an otherwise normal and dull day. Apart from the emotional value that we bestow upon these pieces, we often forget that most of these purchases are one of a kind, something uniquely ours. They are often conversation starters and outfit completers rolled into one or several pieces. Some pieces are only taken out for a special occasions and others are like the skin on our bodies, never leaving a neck or wrist.
We all have these little treasures tucked away in the most special spot in our jewelery case.We should treasure them and always remember that its now in our hands to ensure that the next person inline will also have this great gift. I for one have vowed to keep by favorites safe and start accumulating for my imaginary future, children and grandchildren.I have put together some of my favorite pieces that made the trip over the ocean.Alas the tiny hands of children on beads and clasps is not a good match and I have lost a piece or two in a classroom skirmish to my great sadness,but hopefully they will be restored once I get home.I photographed them , mixed them with a couple of my souvenirs from China. It’s not much, but they’re what I love.
1.So this is a birthday gift from my boyfriend. I am totally besotted with Italy and therefore anything Italian and almost any ,antique or vintage,. So to receive a combination rolle d out in ITALIAN JEWELERY , was heavenly. What more do I need to say and my bf, get’s this! That’s what makes him the ultimate gift giver. He picked this up form one of our favorite shops in Stellenbosch, South Africa. It’s this great little antique shop in Adringa street, Stellenbosh antiques. They have a glorious variety of antique furniture, furnishings, cutlery and obviously jewelery. When he bought it he wasn’t sure what it was, but we have since found out that it’s Italian plastic mosiac work, cast in gold, doesn’t that just sound lovely…? I adore these pieces as it reminds me of the spring flowers that we have in my hometown , Hopefield, during the spring flower season. Plus what makes these babies even better is that the earrings are clip-on and nothing makes me feel like more of a lady, than a good pair of clip-ons.
2. Basically these are pairs of earrings are from my favorite Sunday market, the Blaauwklippen Market on the wine farm with the same name, on Route 44, between Stellenbosch and Somersert-West. There is this amazing lady who sells all kinds of deliciousness and she never disappoints with her goods. She has everything that you’re looking for form cheap 80’s bangles to high end silver and diamond filigree finds. As you can see both pairs are well worn. I chose them , because these guys remind me of my varsity days, good craft beer, wine, summer sunshine, lazing around, listening to music and sampling the artisan fair of some of the best entrepeneurs that the Western Cape has to offer.That market is definitely going to be one of my first stops back in SA.
3. These pretty blue bells were gifts from my boyfriends mom on our first vacation together in Swakopmund, Namibia. They enable me to carry a little bit of Africa with me wherever I go and never fail to remind me of the people back home.
4. The first pair, the little blue windmills are Delft earrings, from the Dutch ceramic company. Another one of my obsessions is Delft and the classic blue-and-white combo. This addiction I think, is often seen in many Afrikaner households throughout the country,or maybe its just my little piece of South Africa, where every ‘tannie’ I know has a proud collection of delft plates and blue and white trinkets lining there fireplace mantles and display cases.Basically blue and white anything. I might have caught the collecting fever from my mom, as she has a rowdy display of this color scheme in our dining room. So I upped the anty by making my collection portable with these two guys. I picked them up in this great little store in the famed Long Street Antique Arcade, in Cape Town. They are just fantastic and add a touch of history and whimsy to any outfit, they let me think about my dutch heritage and they are epicly cool, because they have screw-in fasteners, which makes me take a step back in time , ever so briefly, as I’m getting ready in the morning.
The other pair, was a steal for something like R15 at the Blaauwklippen Market that I named earlier.
5. This lovely piece of arm candy is/was an anniversary gift from my boyfriend. On our four month anniversary, he gave me this, with four charms already on and so my collection grew. With every month of our relationship, he would give me a new charm.Each one has a special meaning. As you can see its quiet full, so we only add one here and there every now and then. It’s been more than five year’s of this, so I get why it looks like it does. This is definitely one of my favorite pieces, as it always tells the story of our relationship,they paths that we have chosen and the fact that we walk them together. It’s like a memory box on my wrist.
6. Another gift from my lovely guy. he designed this pendant for my 21st birthday and used a coin, that his grandmother brought back from France as the center piece. Spoiled rotten.
7. The first ring is a 1920’s to 1930 something twisted ring, a gift from the bf.
The center ring is my grandmother’s wedding ring. Worn with age and love, it is such a representation of the kind of person she was. Simple down to earth, hard working and loyal. I wear it with a sense of pride and a hope that I can live by her example.
Last is a ring my aunt gave me. I never , ever leave the house without this ring. I feel somewhat naked without it. I grew up in a house, full of knitting and crochet work, but my mom, never had any true interest in sewing. My aunt on the other hand is a true whiz on a sewing machine. She taught me everything I know about sewing. If it wasn’t for her I would never have done what I have accomplished.
Remember, everything you put on your body is an expression of who you are. Have fun with it and play!