A few weeks ago I went to Hebden Bridge with my friend Rachel, where I bought a few pieces of costume jewellery from the 1950s and 1960s.
I’m finding it incredibly difficult to find out anything about these pieces. In the past I’ve had some success just by Googling the marks on the back. However, only one of these pieces is marked:
But the numbers on the back don’t bring up anything related to costume jewellery or necklaces. I should point out that the gold spot on the necklace is my fault: I dropped some macaroni cheese all down my front (bump to mouth ratio mixup) and obviously didn’t get it all off. Little bit annoyed with myself that I’ve managed to ruin it slightly.
I wore this one to school today:
I could see some of those little year seven fingers itching to touch it! It does seem to have that effect on people. This kind of stone and molten metal combination seems to be quite a popular one for necklaces of the 60s and 70s. I’ve also got a brooch with a similar kind of design, which has unfortunately broken. Which reminds me, I need to get that fixed… along with the rest of my ‘broken bits’ drawers.
On our first INSET day on Monday I wore the cherries brooch. Three people commented on my ‘festive’ holly and berries brooch. Firstly, it’s cherries. Secondly, it’s nowhere near Christmas; I’m not that mad or desperate to leave!
I may wear this one tomorrow:
This one is most definitely my favourite of the bunch. I think it’s probably slightly earlier in age, judging by the design, than the two necklaces. I would guess late Fifties, early Sixties? I really don’t know though so if anybody who reads this has any ideas or useful links, I would be most appreciative.
Huge thanks to Aidan for taking the pictures for me! Obviously, I can’t take pictures this good…
- A Trip Out to Hebden Bridge (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
Just two of these to share today which made me smile for different reasons:
It’s not difficult to see why Quaker’s Quick Macaroni isn’t still a staple in our diets… Savoury and satisfying, apparently. My first thought upon seeing that wasn’t, “Mmmm, delicious!” but: “Worms!” I’m not sure I trust Jane Beaton (cookery expert of Woman’s Own) and her judgement of food any more after her recommendation of that…
What I like about this advert is the mid century styling of the furniture. That room divider is amazing! Also, ‘Nut Crunch’ icecream? Completely all over that…
Which advert do you prefer? Worms macaroni or Mid-century icecream?
We moved about a month and a half ago, and apart from ordering (and receiving) our stove, we’ve yet to start decorating the house. Last weekend, we moved up into the loft room – currently named ‘The Cocoon’ – in readiness of preparations. I’m not sure what Aidan’s got in store for us this weekend; possibly pulling up carpets and stripping wallpaper.
We really want to bring mid-century style to our 1890′s house. We’ve got a stone exterior and lots of original features, which will definitely be staying, so it’s going to be a tricky task to merge the two style together successfully. Luckily, we’ve got a few magazines featuring just the kind of style we’re after.
I adore the sofa in the picture above and I’m pretty sure that the crockery set in the sideboard is a Midwinter one. There’s something about mid-century design and style that seems to have lasted well; thankfully, more and more people are starting to appreciate it. Unfortunately though, this means that prices are going up as well.
Woman’s Own, Thursday March 15th 1956 featured a pull out booklet on Home decorating ideas. Some of the fabrics, wallpapers and furniture are fantastic:
Some of the prints are just amazing. I keep scouring Ebay but to no avail. I’m either going to have to be prepared to part with the money for something authentic, or grit my teeth and get something more modern. There are some good contemporary wallpapers and fabrics which offer a very similar style, in keeping with the true mid-century style. We’d just rather have the real thing, then we could look like this couple:
Hopefully, by keeping our eyes open and taking our time, we’ll be able to put all of our inspiration to good use and find the perfect pieces, wallpapers, paints and curtains to put our mark on our new house. Lots of fun along the way, too!
As we appear to be experiencing what is now becoming the customary January cold snap, why not dream of warmer climates by admiring these adverts from 1958? Featuring the cruise collection by Best & Co, these adverts show off some of the best of New York fashion from 1958; on a background of stylish, mid-century building and airplanes. “You’ll have fun Island-Hopping Intercontinental style” the slogan proclaims: just the daydream we all need in the Wintery North of England.
The Hotel Embajador Intercontinental in Ciudad Trujillo appears to be still there. Deja Vu Collectors has got a postcard from the era of the hotel:
The Hotel Jaragua Intercontinental doesn’t appear to have any modern mentions. However, I did find these old graphics for the hotel on a website called delcampe.net:
Vintage luggage labels for the Hotel Curacao Intercontinental in the Netherlands Antilles are availabe for sale on Ebay here:
Best & Co. was originally a baby and children’s retailer, founded in 1879 in New York City by Albert Best. Originally known as the Lilliputian Bazaar, it later changed its name and expanded to women’s clothing and accessories. According to Wikipedia:
“The flagship was located originally in the “Ladies’ Mile” near Sixth Avenue and 23rd Street. In 1908, Best & Co. purchased for $500,000 the former Engineer’s Club at 372 Fifth Avenue at 35th Street for a new store, joining an elite group of merchants to locate in that section of Fifth Avenue in the early 1900s, including B. Altman, Gorham, and Tiffany’s. This limestone building later became the Bond Clothing Stores flagship when Best moved farther up the avenue, and was later converted to apartments. Its final 12-story flagship store was located at Fifth Avenue and 51st Street, next to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. (It can be seen in the movie The Godfather…it’s where Michael and Kay have shopped just before seeing the Don has been shot). It was acquired by the company in 1944, from the Union Club. After it closed in late-1970, the beautiful white marble building was torn down and the Olympic Tower was built in its place.”
All of these adverts come from a 1958 January edition of the American ‘Glamour’ magazine – not to be confused with the modern-day, British version. What I love about these adverts is just how redolent they are of a previous era: the illustrations, the fashion, the designs of the hotel, the descriptions of the clothes… all create the perfect ‘mid-century’ image that many people nowadays strive for.
The Mid Century Era, particularly the 1950s, is quickly becoming my favourite era: along with the rest of Mad Men obsessed public! I’ve always loved this decade, the atomic prints, fantastic design and colour palette of grey, turquoise, mustard…
What’s strange then is that West German Pottery from this era has only recently started to shine in my eyes. Previously, I was always drawn to the bright oranges and reds of the ’60s, or the really crusty ‘Fat Lava’ pieces. However, as my taste for interiors evolves more towards the Mid Century asthetic, the clean lines and stylish forms of the ’50s are beginning to come into their own.
Now the regulars of the WGP world who frequent my blog will probably think, “Finally!” when they read that heading. I asked aeons ago if anybody had any fantastic Steuler pieces that I could share via this site, as I wanted to do a post to show off the fantastic variety of pieces that Steuler created. In my mind, I’m always thinking about those people who, like me a few years ago, didn’t really know anything about West German Pottery; where to start, what to collect, who made good quality pieces and so on. So, as much as anything, I think if anybody does stumble upon my blog, it would be good to share information where I can.
Enough babble: onto the pots! Some of these are mine and Aidan; but many are from other collectors who have very kindly allowed me to use their photographs.
Thanks to Kevin Graham at the Pottery and Glass forum for the following information about Steuler. Kevin is in the process of researching and writing a biography about one of Steuler’s most prominent designers, Cari Zalloni.
Steuler was founded in 1917 and closed in 1996. Steuler produced with a reddish clay up until the early 1960s, using one mark, the switched to a new mark,and white clay for their production from the 60s onwards, possibly as they geared up for mass production techniques. (Pottery and Glass forum)
One way to really tell the Zalloni designed pieces is to look out for strong, clean lines and a striking design; bright, vibrant colours and unusual curves. They are very much in keeping with the ‘Space Age’ era to my eye:
Incidentally, Richard has a gorgeous set of photographs over at his Flickr site, featuring not just his beautiful Steuler pictures, but a whole range of West German Pottery. Make sure you take a visit.
Micha Kempf, Claudia, Frank Geesink and Julian Shimmin also sent me some photos, which you can find in the Gallery above. I think they beautifully show the range of glazes and designs you can find by Steuler.
Perhaps my favourite though, is this little fellow sent to me by Claudia:
Thanks again to the gorgeous pictures from everyone who sent me them.
More information about Steuler can be found:
No, you haven’t accidentally gone to the wrong blog. Nor have I had a religious experience. But it did occur to me this morning that many of the more unusual retro items we have appear to have an animal theme. So, here are some of the beasty bits and bobs lying around our house:
I’d like to know who’s idea the Pig Jar was!
We’ve also got this fella:
Just what I’ve always wanted – a West German pottery camel! He and the donkey are rivals. I thought they might be friends, but it’s not worked out.
Now, I’m writing this in advance, so it might very well not be sunny by the time it’s published. I don’t care. At this moment in time, I’m feeling much happier so it’s all about colours to reflect that mood.
Teacher’s strike aside, I’ve got two devolved INSET days… in Basic English, this means I’ve got a five day weekend starting this morning. First stop: Manchester to get some accessories to go with my ‘thrifted’ (to pinch the Aussie/American parlance) Monsoon dress ready for the wedding we’re going to this weekend. I also need new makeup, shoes and a weekend bag. Then, later today I’m signed up to a knitting course at the Smithy Studios in Glossop. Friday morning… don’t talk to me about Friday morning… Oh, O.K… I’ve got a driving lesson. I’m a bit scared. The less said the better. Weekend = posh wedding at Lumley Castle (good luck Sarah and Matt!). Monday – day tripping somewhere with the Holtster.
So yeah, all in all, I’m quite happy.
I miss my blog. The computer is completely messed up so I’m writing this with it working in safe mode. Whoever the horrendous idiot is who created the Windows Vista Recovery virus: shame on you. Why release something like that? Until the PC is fixed, we’re not uploading any pictures to it; nor are we connecting any USBs or anything like that… which means I can’t share pictures of latest finds unless I can sweet talk the ICT people at work to unblock wordpress for me…
Until then, it’s old pictures to ogle. These are pieces that I never posted up – mainly because of time. All blue to fit in with my mood…
You can’t really stay too blue after looking at all of those, can you?
- Glass: Blue and Green Must Never Be Seen… (littleowlski.wordpress.com)