Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Going Back To My Roots


This is my childhood home.
As it's only across the road from my house I offered to wait in for a delivery earlier as Dad had a hospital appointment. The house was built in 1908 in the Arts and Crafts style and has all of it's original features including the bakelite switches, servant's bell and original Edwardian outside toilet. Like many who lived through the war my dad (born in 1929) has always been extremely frugal. We grew up without central heating, double glazing, fitted carpets or any of the usual modern conveniences. We didn't have a video player, never went on foreign holidays and even used tea leaves as they were cheaper than tea bags.

Taken two years ago in our garden. My Mum, Jenni (1942-2010) and her mum, my Grandma, Joan(1914-2009)


Whilst waiting I decided to tackle sorting through more of Mum's stuff, I'd done the majority before the funeral and have been putting off the rest of the task for far too long. I found this little lot in a chest of drawers, these pieces have been around all my life.


My Mum loved costume jewellery. These rings date from the sixties and the early 1970's.

She made quite a lot of jewellery herself. Our tastes were very similiar although she favoured gold and gold coloured costume jewellery over my beloved silver.


Can you spot the mood rings at the back? They were all the rage when I was a little girl. My brother and I saved our pocket money up for weeks to buy her the largest one for Mothering Sunday.

This is a Royal Doulton Art Noveau period soap dish, stamped and presented with Wright's Cold Tar soap. Mum used it as an ashtray until I confiscated it and hid it away.

Gloriously retro Miracle pendant with semi-precious stones.

This silver locket needs a polish, the initials are those of my maternal Great-grandmother, Alice Crosby.


Inside the locket is Alice and my Great-Grandfather, Thomas, shortly after their wedding. She's wearing the locket in the picture.

This gorgeous Art Noveau lady is a detail from the handle of a solid silver button hook.

Victorian ladies used these to assist with the buttoning of their knee length boots. My Mum loved antiques and christened me Victoria in honour of her favourite era.

 Rather a glamorous looking lady on this Victorian pendant. It was originally a button but converted to a more wearable necklace just after the turn of the last century. What an opulent garment it must have been attached to as it's hallmarked silver.

The locket is Victorian and bog oak, used to make mourning jewellery of which I've already got quite an extensive collection. The Whitby jet cross brooch is also of the same era.

Great-Grandfather's Pince Nez.

I bet Kitty would kill for this, it's a 1930's Art Deco lucite (?) choker in need of restringing.

Not very politically correct - the camel necklace is ivory and, I think, Victorian whilst the glass necklace was Mum's as a little girl.

This is me on my 13th birthday in December, 1979. The bronze satin jumpsuit was by Lee Bender for Bus Stop. I wish I could find it.

The heart shaped pendant is actually lead crystal and weighs a ton! The mount is gold, Mum bought it from a junk shop in 1976 for £5 and had to hide it from my Dad as she thought she'd been robbed. No idea about the other two brooches but they are both hallmarked.


This little bunch are all hallmarked, some are pretty hideous and knowing my mum she wouldn't have paid more than a few pence for them. Cash for gold here I come!

The little hand mirror is actually a solid silver pendant and the gold pocket watch chain is Victorian and rose gold. The gold fob is reversible and rather pretty and I'm not quite sure what the scalloped jet item is.

The only question now is, where on earth am I going to put them?

78 comments:

  1. Hi Vix,

    What a beautiful post, I love treasured jewellery, it has so much character, you mum had an amazing taste too.
    Check you out with you crimped hair... ohhh the 80's, we all have had hair like that!

    See you soon, honey and I hope you are well.
    xoxoxox

    ReplyDelete
  2. A captavating post, Vix. Your childhood home is beautiful x

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ah now all is clear ,I can see your good looks have been in the family right down the line ..love Jan xx

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lovely post, I adore your childhood home - the Arts & Crafts period is one of my favourites. That's a great photo of your mum and grandmother, how nice to have it.
    There's some crazy jewellery there, your mum must have been very clever.
    If you do find the jumpsuit, please do show us. I bet it would still fit, you lucky girl!

    ReplyDelete
  5. What a fascinating insight into some wonderful jewellery, I think jewellery alone can sometimes be very dull, it’s the person behind it, the person who has loved and cherished it and ultimately made it a collection to be proud of.

    It is clear that you have inherited your immaculate style and taste from your Mum, who sounded like a truly beautiful person.
    I am so fascinated by the locket and the little hand mirror pendant, such wonderful delights here, thank-you for sharing them xxx

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi my dear-what a wonderful post, I love your childhood home and what treasures of your mums too, such beautiful pieces of jewellery, she had extremely good taste-well we all know where you get it from!! That is such a lovely picture of your mum and grandmother, they look so stylish and happy!! xx

    ReplyDelete
  7. So much beauty here! And you at 13 you were so adorable :)

    The ring next the to the sovereign in the second to last pic looks like an agate-type ring, it's amazing! I've been looking for old rings like that, so much better than buying the new ones in Topshop :) x

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh my gosh, this is a wonderful collection of very speacial treasures. That house is so cool and those pieces of jewelry are simply gorgeous. How lucky that you have them all to remember your mother.

    xoxo
    Psychedelicsister

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a wondeful present to allow us to get into the intimacy of your parents home, and be able to see all these treasures.
    I have been very taken by the angel ring.
    I can also feel how much you miss your mum.
    Mine passed away a long time ago in a car crash, and I still missed her.
    Mil besos my dear, dear friend.
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    ReplyDelete
  10. ohmygosh! those are LoVeLy!
    I have my mood ring from when I was a child in the 70s somewhere, and a beautiful Turquoise ring my mom bought in Vegas, also from the 70s.
    In the fourth picture, the ring in front...is that glass or resin filling? It's my favorite.

    ReplyDelete
  11. What a lovely, lovely post Vix...really moving.
    It's a beautiful house and looks so friendly.
    Thanks for sharing all your treasures.xxx

    ReplyDelete
  12. I felt a little emotional reading this post.
    Your mum looks like she was a wonderful free spirited character. I'll bet that's were you get it from!
    Gorgeous collection of rings and love the old family locket. Very special
    xxx

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is such a lovely post, finding out about your childhood home, beloved family and treasured heirlooms. I can see where you get your excellent taste from - and look at you rocking that crimped hair and jumpsuit! xxx

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow, what a great way to spend a day, looking through and remembering your mum. I love all the rings, you know what I'm like! Anything a bit unusual.

    Love that pic of you in the gold jumpsuit. :)

    xxx

    ReplyDelete
  15. Fabulous stuff, I've been going through a lot of my Dad's things recently - Mostly 50s and 60s items. Love your jumpsuit.

    ReplyDelete
  16. How wonderful to have such a collection of family history, I'm truly envious, I don't think my mam has kept much of anything, she gets bored with things and discards them - I think my hoarding tendencies are a direct reaction - I love to keep things, especially things with a historical family conection. I also love your childhood home, it's truly beautiful. xxx

    ReplyDelete
  17. Wowwowwow, Vix. This is my favourite post of yours ever <3.
    Your mum had such an amazing style and it's wonderful to have so much history of your family. I don't even have any pictures of my dead grandparents!
    Ah I adore you for still remembering the label of the jumpsuit on your 13th, I barely even remember what I wore on mine!! (that picture is my new hairspiration. i'm saving up for a crimper!)
    Haha I love how your mum used the soap dish as an ashtray, that's something that my step-da would do. She looks loads like you!

    x x x

    ReplyDelete
  18. It's great to see your childhood house, it's a beauty! The women in your family have such great tastes and a wonderful sense of style, I'm so glad that they had the thought to keep all of those wonderful bits and bobs. You look fab in your jumpsuit with crimped hair ~ I have a similar pic somewhere of me at a wedding in a white flying suit with flourescent belt!
    Kandi x

    ReplyDelete
  19. AWWW (hugs)this post made me teary eyed. so sorry about your mom.now I see where you get your gorgeous looks,style and frugal ways,creativeness..look at you so cute in gold and styling hair..that house is beautiful..I bet you seen creepy things there..all that jewelry is so shiny and pretty..lots of trinkets for you... the locket is mi fave..I been looking for a locket to put a foto of mi mama in it..I used to have one as a child ,but dont remember what happen to it..luckyly your mom kept everything..mi mama keeps everything too...your moms mood rings look so elegant and expensive.oh and I adore the Victorian era..I find that time kinda scary.
    thanks for posting this..I love hear about your life

    ReplyDelete
  20. Your childhood home is beautiful, I love those windows. It looks like the ladies in your family have fantastic taste, just like you!
    Costume jewellery is a passion of mine so I love to see posts like this! My family on my mothers side made jewellery and some of it has been passed on to me.... I will certainly treasure it!

    ps, I didn't win the faux fur jacket on ebay.... naughty seller ended the auction early! I shall be on the lookout for another one now though! x

    ReplyDelete
  21. Such an amazing collection. Going through family jewelry always triggers such memories. Some really fab pieces here.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Captivating and wondrous post!

    ReplyDelete
  23. It looks like your mother had exquisite taste x

    ReplyDelete
  24. Gorgeous pieces, especially all those amazing rings! Love the old pic of you, I used to wear my hair the same way, haha :)

    ReplyDelete
  25. That is the most glorious collection, you clearly take after your Mum with your great taste in jewelery. And I love the 13 year old Vix, so cute!

    My (4) parents were born post-war but when I was younger they were also very frugal. Sometimes it makes me wonder why we seem to have forgotten how?

    ReplyDelete
  26. A fascinating post, Vix. Your mum was stunning. Love the pic of you as a 13 year old. You look adorable. I remember mood rings very well. My mum had one similar to one above.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I loved reading this Vix, your old home must be incredible. And your mum was beautiful.

    I remember mood rings being so cool when I was at school, fantastic that you still have some. This is what comes of having a family who stays in the same place; we have hardly any of our old things left. My favourite is your great grans locket with the picture of her wearing it x

    ReplyDelete
  28. What a lovely post, so many beautiful things, and I can see where you get your good looks from!

    ReplyDelete
  29. love this post. ur mom had the most amazing collection of jewelry and the soap dish is to die for!! ur childhood home looks so warm and friendly.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Some really gorgeous jewellery - love the Art Deco choker - what a fine family home! Have you seen the recent Lee Bender/Bus Stop book? I was given a copy, if you drop me an email with your address I'll send it to you.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Adorable post. Your mum seem to had excellent taste. Somehow you seem very alike.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I can see where you got your style and wonderful taste from, Vix. It's a beautiful collection. And tea leaves for me over tea bags everyday! xxx

    ReplyDelete
  33. Vix what a beautiful post, I was captivated reading it. Jewellery is such an important and precious connection to our loved ones and to the past. Victoria is a really beautiful first name too xxxxx

    ReplyDelete
  34. In your jewellery collection of course! What a beautiful moving post Vix. So emotional as well as a visual feast. Thank you for sharing all these treasures of your late mum which must hold such sentimental value to you. What great taste she had which you've obviously inherited. The Victorian age is my favourite era for vintage too. xxx

    ReplyDelete
  35. A really lovely post Vix. It seems like you have inherited a lot of her good taste when it comes to accessories, so nice of you to share those memories with your readers.

    Carol x
    www.mystylisms.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  36. Vixen--I so remember the mood rings (and have several cheap ones still knocking about in my jewelry box). I am a new reader and had been unaware of your mother's passing. I am hesitant to say this next, as I don't know how you might feel about your mum, but I can see similarities in style. Several excellent pieces amongst these "jewels". The soap dish/ash tray caught my eye, as did the pendant mirror.

    ReplyDelete
  37. No wonder you have such a good eye for quality and gravitate toward boot & estate sales! It's in your genes :) It has been a pleasure to peek a bit into your past & get a view of your mother, grandparents & great-grandparents. I'm sure you'll find a suitable place to store or display these treasures.

    ReplyDelete
  38. lovely, lovely post - thank you x

    ReplyDelete
  39. You and your mum seem so alike. It was wonderful getting a glimpse of your past

    ReplyDelete
  40. You look so cute in that jumpsuit. I had a denim jumpsuit in that age, found it this summer. Then I hated it, now I wish I could squeeze into it. The jewellery collection is fantastic.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Dearest Vix, I loved this post, it made me feel quite emotional.

    I grew up in a very similar house to you. What a gorgeous collection!

    Your mum looks fabulous. I can see where you've got your brilliant style and bargain hunting from.

    Will definitely call you tomorrow, love C xx

    ReplyDelete
  42. What an absolutely lovely trip into your family history, you can certainly see where your style comes from right through the generations! xx

    ReplyDelete
  43. Wow, what a fab collection, I'm sure you'll treasure it, as I would. Yes you're right, I would kill for that necklace, I saw a very similar one in an Art deco shop in Melbourne for just under $500.

    ReplyDelete
  44. You are SO LUCKY to have such treasures from your ancestors!! I think it's wonderful that you cherish them so dearly--not a lot of people do. Also, your childhood home is magnificent! So cute!

    I really wish I had memorabilia from my family's past...

    ReplyDelete
  45. Wow! Your mum had a great eye for beautiful things. The Miracle cross pendant is exceptional. I wish my mum was like yours and kept all her pretty things. My mum threw anything away that was never needed or never worn, it's a shame. This was a really interesting post. xxx

    ReplyDelete
  46. What a fabulous post. Looks a lovely house. Your mam obviously was a keen collector with some beautiful pieces. I actually LOVE the mood rings. The locket with the initials is wonderful especially as Alice is wearing it in the picture. And what a wonderful reason behind your name. x

    ReplyDelete
  47. Thanks for this posting! Your mom and your grandma were beautiful and you have a great resemblance to them. The jewelry pieces are gorgeous. You are very lucky to have them. I moved so much in my childhood and also as an adult that I don't have any items belonging to my grandma and very few from my mom because she use to throw away or give away items every time we moved.

    ReplyDelete
  48. I love your blog! I was looking through your posts - you have impeccable taste, darling.
    c:

    melanielikes.blogspot.com
    Follow?

    ReplyDelete
  49. Ohhhhh, I hope you find that Lee Bender outfit again. I love the jewellery; I've inherited a tiny amount of my nan's stuff and I treasure it.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Oh Vix, you are so lucky! Look at your parents' beautiful house (and you live across the road - how MARVELLOUS!). Your parents' story reminds me of Raymond Briggs' Ethel and Ernest, which I'm sure you've read (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethel_and_Ernest). So touching and beautiful.

    Look how beautiful and glam Jenni and Joan were - no wonder you are such a style mistress.

    I lovelovelove: the mood ring, the Royal Doulton soap dish, the Miracle pendant, the divine locket, the green glass necklace and the crystal heart pendant.

    Thanks so much for sharing these items from your history with us. It will mean so much more when we see you wearing them.

    Sarah xxx

    ReplyDelete
  51. How lovely to get a glimpse in your life and childhood. You looked so adorable in teenage too! :) And now we know your skills to hunt a bargain are hereditary ... hehe!

    P.S. Have been MIA but I miss the blogging world terribly!!!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Wow, I can see where you got your style! Your Mum was so gorgeous, and her collection is amazing! And yes, I bet Kitty is drolling over that bakelight, hehe!

    So many treasures there. It's wonderful that they'll continue to be worn!

    I had an exciting find in an op-shop today...will post about it soon!

    xx

    ReplyDelete
  53. So many covetable pieces. So much history. So many fabulous women! Always a joy to read your words.

    ReplyDelete
  54. WOW! Look at you at 13! Even back then you were styling Vix. Hopefully you find some special place for all these lovely and precious items. xxx

    ReplyDelete
  55. Lovely photos, Vix! I think I recognise your house. Oh yes, crimped hair brings back a few memories.xxx

    ReplyDelete
  56. What a wonderful post it put a smile on my face.I loved your pics your parents house is so cute.I loved your story I loved your mums collection and I adored that locket that has your greatgrandparents in it.I so wish I had items handed to me like that.
    Thanks so much for sharing it was wonderful to read.

    ReplyDelete
  57. A beautiful, beautiful post on so many levels. It's clear to see where you got your gorgeous looks and wonderful taste from too. I find my tastes are evolving more and more like my mum's. x

    ReplyDelete
  58. What a beautiful selection of pieces, and soo lovely to have soo much that was your mums too.

    ReplyDelete
  59. How lovely, the jewellery i like best is the green bead necklace, and the elephant one (not sure if that's bad!)
    Your mum and grandma were both very pretty, and how brilliant that pic of you in the jumpsuit is! xx

    ReplyDelete
  60. i have really enjoyed this post and reading about your families treasures it is always great to hear a story behind beautiful objects .
    Thank you for sharing
    xx fee

    ReplyDelete
  61. I am sorry that you have lost your mother... She looks really hip xx
    What wonderful treasure you have to remember her by.. I also have a little battered silver mirror which I love... I love little antique gems.
    I love your house.. I do not have fitted carpets ..I have heating but seldom use it prefer to use the wood burner and have an aga. I also have single glazing ..rotten georgian sash windows.. and have loose tea because I prefer it.
    Although I grew up accustomed to all the opposite :) xx

    ReplyDelete
  62. So pretty! Your mum had wonderful taste in jewelry.

    ReplyDelete
  63. You mum looks fabulous, Vix - and so youthful as well - now we know where you get it from! xxxx

    ReplyDelete
  64. This was just wonderful and very touching =)

    haha pinc nez... sounds a bit nice pinch nose.

    ReplyDelete
  65. thanks for sharing this treasures (words & pictures)!

    ReplyDelete
  66. Your mum looks beautiful. We look quite alike I think - must dig out one of my teenage pics for you to see, facially we're very similar. xx

    ReplyDelete
  67. You definately inherited your Mum's love for jewellery! Lovely post!

    ReplyDelete
  68. You look so poised at thirteen, and your hair is so much better than mine was! What meaningful and striking treasures you've found. They can't take up *that* much room, right? If I didn't have open display space or immediate use for such things, I'd keep them in a treasure box for occasional review and reverie. I especially love Alice's locket, and the fact that she's wearing it in the picture inside the locket.

    ReplyDelete
  69. how exciting! this is a very beautiful post complete with much substance and authenticity:) the mood rings are a definite catch! it's evolved since eh!

    ReplyDelete
  70. Vix, what a stunning house that is! I really like Arts & Crafts design and that's a beautiful example.

    The pic of your mum and grandma is just gorgeous. They both look so lovely and full of life and fun. As for all that jewellery, it seems so sad to get rid of it all. I know you can't keep everything but surely you have room for most of it?

    ReplyDelete
  71. Your Mam was a looker! I can see were you get your style from ...and your nose for a bargain! I note that you both had the collectors bug too! Happy days! xx

    ReplyDelete
  72. you've officially killed me.
    a slow torturous murder...

    all that jewellery. the greed shall get me.. :(

    Lovely, to-be-read-when-you're-low post. :)

    ReplyDelete
  73. This is so interesting! I love your old home, all the amazing jewelry your mother owned, and the photo of you as a teen. You remind me of myself! What a great jumpsuit.

    ReplyDelete
  74. What an amazing collection. It must be really emotional going through it all. Hopefully, plenty happy memories are evoked though - like saving for a Mood ring! I loved those as a kid. And, like the other on here have commented, it's clear to see you've got some good genes behind you - your mum's fabulously stylish! x

    ReplyDelete
  75. What a lovely blog, I think you and I would have a lot in common. I too grew up with the Rolling Stones (who I saw in Cannes one hot summer) and The Good Life. What nostalgia! I also have a love of hippy vintage fashion, and retro jewelry. I particularly love the geometric bakelite or lucite necklace you've got there. I've got a similar one in green bakelite. I'm rather a mad bakelite collector and a big fan of Art Deco, as you'll see from my link. All the best. Lesley

    ReplyDelete
  76. We are the same age and you look a damn sight better than me. Your mum was lovely.

    SB

    ReplyDelete

Don't be shy, if you enjoyed your visit leave a comment, I can come and visit your blog if you do.
Love from Vix
xxx