I have the blingy ones, and my animal collection. Of course, since I started posting about them in April last year I’ve acquired a load more, so maybe I’ll have to start all over again! The weird ones might be overstating it a bit, so don’t get too excited. These are just some of the random brooches I’ve acquired that don’t fit into the other categories really.
First up, 2 lucite brooches. I’ve heard stories in the past about these sorts of brooches being carved from the windscreens of downed planes during WWII, but I don’t know where I heard that now and I don’t think either of these are likely to be of that type. They are chunks of plastic, carved and coloured from the back to make the patterns.
Really good examples of these can cost quite a bit of money, which is why I don’t have a really good example, but I love these anyway! The one on the left I think is 1940s. It’s carved with flowers and slightly faded, and the pin is slightly rusted, I bought it for a few pounds at an antique fair. The black and white one is later, maybe 1950s, and I bought it off eBay.
Next up are 2 very different flowers. On the left is a carved celluloid edelweiss, it’s got one of it’s petals snapped off, though I’m actually not sure if that’s happened since I had it or was like that when I bought it. I just liked it and I never look closely enough! It’s probably 30s or 40s, or at least that’s what others I’ve seen online have been dated as.
I did have a celluloid lotus flower brooch, but it mysteriously disappeared one day, I guess it must have fallen off my cardigan. I hope someone picked it up and gave it a happy new home.
On the right hand side is a crazy huge and heavy flower brooch I picked up on a junk stall. I have no idea of its age, but I imagine it’s newish. It’s about 2 inches across and can be difficult to wear as its very heavy, it’s great in the summer though, it feels very tropical. Again, this has a few jewels missing, but I’m not that fussy about things like that, that’s why all my brooches only cost a few pounds!
This brooch was give to me by Mr Chicks Mum, she thought it was Victorian, and it’s definitely older than some of my others. Inside the rounded glass is actually a butterfly wing. Not very friendly to the poor butterfly, but it has a beautiful iridescence. I believe butterfly wings were used a lot in Art Deco jewellery, so it may be later than that.
This next brooch is another one not for animal lovers. It was given to me by the Jewellery Genie who recycles broken jewellery into beautiful new pieces. This was in a job lot she acquired, but because this was fur she didn’t feel she could make use of it so passed it onto me.
It’s real fur, but I don’t know what, probably rabbit. In the centre it has a circle of pearls and blue gems. It’s quite big, but looks great on the lapel of a winter coat.
Last up, is a brooch that doesn’t actually belong in this section, it should have gone with the bling, but I forgot about it and I love it so much I wanted to add it in today. It’s actually a set, in its original box, which was again given to my by Mr Chicks Mum, I think it belonged to his Nan.
I think it’s art deco, and it consists of a brooch and a pair of dress clips that I wear quite a bit. There are some missing gems, but from a distance that’s not really noticeable. I love dress clips for jazzing up
I wore this brooch with my Able Grable dress to the Marvellous Cocktail Party a few years ago.
So that’s my vintage brooch collection, apart from the ones I’ve acquired in the mean time of course! I store my brooches by pinning them to a long piece of wide ribbon tied to my curtain rail. It means I can easily see them to choose which one to wear and keeps them from getting bashed about in a jewellery box.
Brooches are one of the things I’m always drawn to when rummaging around boot fairs, vintage shops, charity shops and antique markets. They can really finish off a vintage ensemble and look beautiful pinned to coats and hats as a finishing touch. I often wonder why brooches don’t seem so popular anymore, they’re such an easy and versatile piece of jewellery to wear.