Tag Archives: antiquing

Growly face and dougnuts

Spiderweb obsidian, like most semi precious stones, shows infinite variation. I love it because even though it isn’t fancy like a diamond, unlike a diamond, each one is unique. Which is also why I can identify the ones taken from me, even if the fact that I know my own wirework and can provide dated photographs isn’t enough…

I know this isn’t even a blip in the radar of things that really matter, but I’m vibrating between tired anxious and annoyed right now and can’t focus on anything useful. (And my wire jacaranda trees are not behaving, I’m running out of stones and can’t get it *just right*)

Feel free to skip, I’ll try to have something fun and fuzzy up shortly.

In May I had some pendants on consignment with a shop whose tent at Brimfield was robbed during the night. (He only brought his most expensive pieces home, I will confess annoyance that he left pieces that weren’t even really his to leave behind..) My pieces were amongst the pieces stolen. When the shop owner finally told me (a few weeks after the event and one day before I was leaving on vacation) I tried to email pictures of some of the pieces to the police. Never heard back, didn’t really expect to.

I was shopping Brimfield with my mom today and I found two of those pieces being sold in another tent.

I failed at not reacting, and my mother really failed and started asking the dealer questions. He said he got them at auction and wouldn’t tell me where or what or whose auction, claiming he didn’t keep records of that kind of thing.

I wasn’t sure what to do and just had to walk away. Another dealer who saw me upset told me to call the cops.

With the help of some very nice people I eventually managed to reach the police, who over the phone pointed out that I couldn’t prove the pieces were one of a kind.

They’re hand made-I couldn’t make exact copies of the wire frames even if I try-so chances are pretty good no one else could make an exact replica either. Plus each stone has a pretty unique pattern- one cut gem might look like any other cut gem of the same type, but cabs tend to have designs unique to them, especially the freeform ones I use. One stone was a spiderweb obsidian, and I’ve not found another with a similar pattern. I’d been looking to replace this stolen one. The other was an orthoceras, so being a once living thing it too is near unique in its exact formation. The orthoceras I’ve a photo of, with other wraps by me, posted on my site almost exactly two years ago.

This guy was also pretty unique. Besides my wrapping style, it’s a fossil of an ancient squid sort of creature, and there tends to be some variation in individual fossils. I know the one I saw today was this one, stolen from me in May.

However, an officer did come, but by the time we got to the tent the man had suddenly packed up for an unnamed auction in Connecticut and his belligerent friend was packing up because he had a wake to go to. There was no permit that I could see to give any identification or number, and all the friend would say was that the man’s name was either Bill or Bob. As said, the officer was nice to me, but didn’t seem to make any effort to look for the missing permit or call the guy on it, let alone make him give up the name of his partner. (Or even give his own name.)

So I was given a badly photocopied incident report which I have to fill out and bring back tomorrow (since apparently email and fax aren’t options) plus find a way to print decent copies of my digital photos.

What’s also kind of classic is that he was selling the coated copper piece (which I had labeled as such) as sterling silver by weight. I guess it’s like my father says, once dishonest, always dishonest…

I know it’s pretty irrational, but this really ruined the show for me.

So many people there are really nice, but it isn’t fun anymore. I’ve been going (often all three shows) practically every year since I could walk. I used to love rummaging through all the stuff in the hopes of finding broken bits and bobs to work into my jewelry. Before it hit the fan today I got some fun old coins to wire wrap. Less on the rummage side, I’m also working on collecting antique books.

(Okay, that sounds more highfalutin than it really is. I’m a sucker for turn of the century fairy tale illustrations, so I collect those.

Mostly Arthur Rackham, a little Edmund Dulac.)

Now whenever I rummage I’m a) worried that its through things stolen from somebody else and b) half looking through the silver to see if I see any more of my pieces. It didn’t feel like a rusty treasure hunt anymore. So I treated myself to an apple cider doughnut and went home.

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Antiques, IDs, etc

-from Dulac's The Sleeping Beauty and other tales

I spent two days at Brimfield last week. Brimfield is a major antique show/flea market in the area. (Well, Brimfield is the town the show is located in…) It lasts for six days and is held three times a year. Thursday I brought two friends who’d never been before. They just didn’t understand the scale of the show when I tried to explain it. There’s a book, 1000 places to see before you die, and it describes 120 acre (divided into 23 fields) Brimfield show as the world series of flea markets.

We had fun looking at old clothing and vintage hats, got frightened by some truly disturbing mixes of doll parts and old tins, and searched for treasure. (Despite two days of looking I was sadly unable to find a pith helmet. I did find a really fun Edwardian bowler, but it was well out of my price range…) I’m glad both of my newbies found fun spoils to bring home. We lucked out on the weather. I’ve done the show in driving rain (Dyed my socks pink once when I put CVS bags over them under my sneakers to keep from getting too squishy…) and in brutally hot weather too. So clear if a bit dusty was a kind start.

One of the tents had vintage trims and lace as well as buttons and modern cameos with an old-fashioned feel. We unearthed some unusual ones too. Two of us split a package of carnelian colored cameos with a Wedgwood style look that are of the god Ganesha. I also picked up more modern cameos in black and bronze of an eastern style goddess.

Any idea who she is?

They were very eye-catching. I’ve yet to decide what to do with the Ganesh pieces. The black and bronze I figured out how to do a two-tone basket weave style wire wrap with a sneaked in swarovski crystal, and I’m pleased with how she looks, but I’m not sure who she is! She reminds me of portrayals I’ve seen of the goddess Kuan-yin, but I’m not as familiar with Eastern mythology as I ought to be, so if you recognize her please let me know!

My second day I got sad news and an old book. My favorite antique book and print dealer is retiring. I tried to explain to her husband that she couldn’t retire until she found me an Arthur Rackham illustrated copy of the Tempest, but he didn’t seem to find that a valid objection. I bought a (quite mangled and therefore something I could afford) copy of The Sleeping Beauty and other tales that had been illustrated by Edmund Dulac from about 1910. Dulac is another one of my favorite golden age illustrators. He used richer colors than Rackham, and had more of a pseudo-eastern flair, though I don’t always find his little creatures as much fun as I do with Rackham. But he also has such wonderful shapes and detail. I would love to get my hands on a copy of his 1909 Rubaiyat or his illustrations of Edgar Allen Poe’s works.

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