Monday, April 18, 2011


Back to the History of Jewelery !!

Art Deco circa 1927 molded or pressed glass Czech necklace

History of Czech or Bohemian Molded Glass Jewelery

Once again there is not much information on the internet about Czech molded glass.
There are some absolutely stunning wearable pieces of art around....and I have to admit.... a lot of it is owned by me !

A cottage industry began in the Bohemian cities of Jablonec, Stanovsko and Bedrichov in the 1500s. These glassmakers made beads for larger jewelry factories.
To expand the market for beads, Bohemian "sample men" canvassed Europe and returned with new design ideas. By the 1860s, the Czech bead industry had surpassed its rival, Venice. About the same time, manufacturers developed special molds and machines to produce pressed-glass.

Pressed or molded beads are associated with lower labour costs. These are made in the Czech republic. Thick rods are heated to molten and fed into a complex apparatus that stamps the glass, including a needle that pierces a hole. The beads again are rolled in hot sand to remove flashing and soften seam lines. By making canes (the glass rods fed into the machine) striped or otherwise patterned, the resulting beads can be more elaborately colored than seed beads. One `feed' of a hot rod might result in 10–20 beads, and a single operator can make thousands in a day.
The Bohemian glass industry was known for its ability to copy more expensive beads, and produced molded glass "lion's teeth", "coral", and "shells", which were popular in the 19th and early 20th century Africa trade.
Czech bead-making suffered setbacks because of two world wars, the Great Depression and Communist rule. Today, the industry has been revived, and Czech bead makers are again among the world leaders in bead manufacturing and exports.

Czech molded glass pieces of jewelery came to the fore around 1900
Travel had become very popular to those with money, a tour of Europe was not uncommon at all... for the rich.
People traveled often by boat [think Titanic] and night after night it was De Rigueur to wear different outfits and jewelery, and so started costume jewelery, a lot was made in Czechoslovakia....but often Czech beads were imported and made into jewelery in London, Paris, New York.
Art Nouveau or Arts and Craft's style was very popular and fancy pressed glass suited the style well.
The above photo is a set of mine in faux Jade molded glass, I said a few posts back that even though I own real jade, I am just as happy or even happier to own fake jade.
The pieces above vary in era some have been made or at least been modified by me, but they are around the 1915 circa.
These earrings I wear with the above set [flash makes the color look different] are fake or a copy. New made in Paris and most likely Czech molded glass made to look Art Deco....not many people years ago had pieced ears [except for some European country's] and earrings were usually screw back.
Once again Czech molded glass this time in mostly mottled pinks...I made the earrings from vintage stone...but the necklaces are circa 1935
Then came the machine age or Art Deco...the typical "Flapper" girl loved to wear jewelery shapes were becoming more square less rounded and flowing my first photo... the blue molded glass necklace circa 1927 shows this style to perfection.
Of course the long flapper length necklace or lariat was extremely popular too and many of the beads used were molded or pressed glass.

A transitional necklace half Deco and half Nouveau circa 1920 in Sterling signed

The above two photos should have been all together but I forgot one ! and I am missing one earring too.
All these necklaces [yes I wear the lot together] are Czech molded glass,and are original... so are the earrings although I modified them for my pieced ears they are transitional half Deco half Nouveau circa 1920.
Made in brass but silver plated you can see some wear but I think it adds to the beauty.
You will find that a lot of Czech pieces were not signed, and if you do have a piece signed usually Bohemia or Slovakia or Czechoslovakia, it will be worth a lot more.

Czech molded glass set circa 1930

Czech Molded glass set circa 1935
The above two sets that I own, are similar in color but there are subtle differences.
Green was a very popular color in molded glass, but another popular color was coral a particular favorite of mine......but then again.... I love molded glass so much I don't really care what color they are...all the colors were very vibrant...I think that's one of the reasons they are so beautiful.

So here is part of my coral set.
The necklace on the right with the marcasite is Czech original circa 1930 to 35 the other necklace I made [because I needed something to go with it]... out of vintage old stock Japanese pressed glass !.... so it is very similar in style.
The drop earrings I also made myself from molded glass beads most likely Czech...I tried to make them to match or blend with both necklaces.
Of course molded or pressed glass was used for all types of jewelery, rings, earrings, necklaces and brooches and pins [I took no photos of brooches today will do a future post on them]

Molded glass ring set, both rings made by New York manufacturer "Nemco"  circa 1935 brass silver plate signed... the glass would be Czech
Czech carnelian molded glass circa 1927
Above are two interesting necklace....both are pressed glass done to look like the stone carnelian...the long one done in the Chinese style that was popular in the 1920's [think opium dens] the shorter one made by me from a brooch, is done in the "Egyptian Revival" style also in vogue in the 20's because of finding King Tuts tomb...but both are Czech.

 To the left hand side of this page are more examples of pressed glass...this set of cobalt blue is the first necklace I ever made from ground up I have just included it with the original Czech molded glass choker to show you that complimentary jewelry can be made.
 Earrings are all original Czech pressed glass but I have removed the screw backs ....but kept them in case I need to turn them back
The top two are circa 1930.
The bottom two are Art Nouveau circa 1010
This pale green dainty molded glass Czech pendant necklace is in rolled gold [I rarely wear gold so should sell it] quite rare and signed ......circa 1910 Art Nouveau.
 Two rings in cobalt blue, left one is another "Nemco" USA made but likely Czech glass, and the right hand side one is Czech signed very rare in a ring...Art Nouveau maybe turn of the Centurty 1900 and the first Nouveau thing I ever a dear favorite
Set of Czech glass rings all green some made to look like Jade most are Sterling signed age range is 1900 to 1950 ...the one on the very right is the oldest and the light green ring center with marcasite surrounds is Art Deco.

Another pair of Czech molded glass earrings...far more pale pink than photo shows, due to having to use flash [it was a very dull day]
This pair are most likely from the 1950's
So you can see that once the Czechs found a winning formula they stuck to a basic style very typically their own.

So The Czechs continued to make pressed glass during the late 1940's after recovering from the revenges of World War 2.
Items made during the 1950's and 1960's were good... but the early era' of 1900 to the late 1930's were never surpassed it was the heyday of vintage Czech molded glass.
Molded glass is still made to this day, and imported all over the world for jewelery makers...a lot of "old stock" is also floating around along with vintage findings from the it is not so hard to make your very own molded glass heirloom,
I buy as much as I can.... and stash it away, for that time in my life when I will have enough energy to make things again.
What is the value of vintage Czech glass pieces ? It really is hard to has taken me years of buying and study to even know when a piece is Czech let alone the era, the fact that a lot of it is not signed, some things were made for the tourist market other's not...but the price for a good quality piece is right up there....a really good necklace in great condition could fetch a $700.00 more or less.
Below is an example of a necklace that I sold... the Women who bought it is paying it sold for $500.00 which is a bit cheap really as it includes earrings [I could not find them for the pic]
It is transitional circa 1920 signed Slovakia on the clasp and made partly with molded Uranite glass !! or vasaline glass so it should have been more.... she got a deal.

As I said there is not a great deal of info about Czech molded glass...but I hope you have leaned a bit...maybe you will recognize something in Grandmothers box of treasures.
I am sorry if all the photos are annoying... but I have had to a bit... let my pic's of my collection do the talking at least to a certain extent.
All photos are my own unless stated other wise.
I would like to thank Wikipedia for parts of this post
And I would like to especially thank Jane Haley Clark owner of *Morning Glory Antiques & Jewelery* Here for use of the next lot of photos so you can see some beautiful examples of Vintage Czech molded glass remember to see is to learn !!
Til next time enjoy

Friday, April 15, 2011


Do I have any right to give out tips ?
Who knows.... I have learned a few things in my life
Are they useful ?... again who knows ?
My brain is just full of random ideas
Do I like to tell people what to do...hell yes I love it !!

So my tip of the week is:

Taking care of your face in a hot climate

See the above photo.....
Well I live where that photo was taken, all year round we have sun, the sunlight is strong ...even in is Australia.
About 20 years ago I started to notice my face had brown splotches on it, and I had a V neck.... a brown blob where my neck and chest was exposed to the elements.
The rest of me was OK.... as I have olive sallow skin.
Now 20 years ago.... were the days when we did not wear sunscreen as an everyday thing, nor hats...It was well before.... slip slop slap...that means slip on a top, slop on sunscreen, and slap on a hat..or something similar.
What to do?

No 1

Use a good sunscreen....
I have used them all....the above is the currant favorite it has won some world awards as being best or most popular wonder...not greasy, light,.... you would not know you are wearing it.
If I need some colour.... I will use "Invisible Zinc Tinted Sunscreen" you know the one Jerry Hall and Georgia Jagger tout

I find that since I have been using sunscreen... and that's  been since I was quite young... I have no more brown blotches, just clear skin, and definitely not as many wrinkles as some.
I wear it everyday.. never forget.... Summer and Winter.

*Shout's* It works I tell you !!

No 2

Now as you can imagine I collect hats....

I can't be bothered doing a photo of all my hats but the one above is a vintage sun bonnet... perfect to protect your face from nasty sun rays.
Not any old hat is good should protect the sides of your face and neck...needless to say, when I wear this old dear bonnet/hat, Mr Stella wont go out with me !! ...... but I don't care it works !!  [when I can see where I am going].... I did warn you I am slightly eccentric....I am well known for my hats in certain circles !

No 3

Wear a scarf....
Around your neck... to protect your neck and chest area from sun damage.
Once again... [this is getting quite boring I agree]...I collect vintage scarf' and crepe de chine being particular favorites, the above photo is just a few I pulled out of the wash......obviously ! because of the creases in them ..[I have trouble with hand washing..I never have enough time]
No matter how much botox, or face lifts a women can have...the dead give away to age...... is the chest and one should protect both.
A beautiful scarf and SPF 30 hand cream, is the way to go.

No 4

In a hot climate it is very important to wash away all the salty sweat from wearing a hat and sunscreen.
Any grainy scrub will do..... I use the one above at the moment.
But sometimes I use crushed aspirin [yes the headache sort] mixed with water or cleanser as it contains salic acid, the same stuff they use in professional face peels.
I also use plain yogurt and honey ...yum...leave while in the bath then rinse with a facecloth.
Or I rub my face with paw paw or papaya  a great natural exfoliator

No 5

In other words, use a serum or cream or some sort of treatment to re moisturize your face.
I use this Avon face brightening serum at the moment combined with the same Skin Brightening hand cream, that has a factor 15+ sunscreen.... then apply whatever I can find that's thick and gooey..... some random cream... [I own lots]
This stuff also clears the face...strips it in fact .... using AHA's that take a layer of skin off the face to brighten, and get rid of any discoloration.
Then I use a cream..... a good one ....I am using Olay Regeneriste Night Cream at the moment, but I also use oils, say Trilogy Rose Hip oil..... pure and renowned,  Vit E capsules  [just prick a tablet and use on face] or anything that works to saturate the face with goodness.
Good skin care doesn't need to cost the earth ....regularity of product use is the key.

I also use a good eye cream, and Sun Glasses at all times while outdoors

The End.......I hope I have saved one face from the revenge's of sun so therefore of age
Note: I am definitely not being paid to promote above creams yet !! lets hope day

Thursday, April 14, 2011


What are my musings today......
I have been thinking  [it is my day off work] that I really enjoy reading some of the fantastic blogs I have discovered, while browsing others blogs to learn... about blogging in general.
In the course of the last few weeks... some how I have aimlessly stumbled across some fabulous sites.
Of course I have read blogs from time to time, but until I started my own, I never really followed one.
Now I do... and I can hardly wait to read more.
Ahh for the luxury of time
So Thank You !! to all out there who do blogging because you have given me a lot of visual and mental stimulation this week.......
And I have needed it.

On another note, I went to *The Big Smoke* today [a bigger Town] and as this is a visual blog about collecting... I will show you what I wore, it's no big deal...but I felt I looked OK
I had to chop off my head because to take your own photo is not easy... and my head looked terrible..sorry about that !! but believe me when I say you are better off by a mile not seeing it !!

I collect vintage Chongsams, this one is silk, hand made, and a little too big so I used a soft leather belt tied a bit higher up than normal to show the lines a bit better, and so as to not cut me in half,,,I am small.
The Handbag is wool...made by a crafter in my area.
I cut my shoes out but they are very cute kitten heels with a front bow in the same colour as the bag.
The only jewellery I wore was a pair of enamel drop Art Deco earrings, that you can just see if you look hard and my signature silver and ivory bracelets [also cut out by cropping]
I felt and cool/comfotable as it was a beautiful day, but the looks I got from the old folks at the harware shop certainly did nil for my self esteem.
What is a strange big Town girl doing in a small town ? I have to ask myself...but that my dears is a question for another day.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Large Camphor Glass Necklace circa 1920..Rhodium plate.

I have been so looking forward to doing this post...

It has been quite hard work because there is not much information on the Internet regarding camphor glass jewelery... plus I had to take quite a few photos...unfortunately some of my necklaces are so tangled at the moment that I could not photo some of my better one's...but will do so in another post..maybe Edwardian Jewelery, because they are that too.

Most Camphor glass... is cloudy white glass, that is either blown or pressed, but it can come in other stunning colours but that did not happen so much until the early 1930's
Characterized by the star-burst pattern carved into the glass usually on the reverse of the piece with more than likely either a small diamond, piece of marcasite or a symbol of some kind as a center stone.
Pieces can be round, square, oval, or rectangle..rectangle seems to be the most popular.
Camphor Glass pieces started to be made first around 1890 mostly as mourning necklaces or brooches, and were made right up to the early 1940,s.... becoming perhaps most popular in the late 1920's to mid 1930's.
Reproduction pieces have been made in the last 20 or 30 years and it is really not easy for the lay man to tell the difference, it's just a little thing here or there a clasp perhaps...take for instance there were no safety clasps on pins back before 1930 they used C clasps.

2 pendants circa 1910 one on right is not Camphor glass

Take the above photo for example... Camphor glass piece on the left is circa 1910 it is made of pot metal that was most likely Rhodium plated but has now worn away...but the tiny bit of rose gold leaves and paste stones remain, same with the necklace on the right.....not camphor glass just paste, but rhodium plate remains as does the gold or gilt high lights.
How do I know the era of these 2 pieces ? ..well style is Art Nouveau all swirls, paper link or crinkle cut chain, which was popular at that time and the clasp that is original to the pendant on the right.
I own these two... and the one on the right is most likely Czech made although unmarked.
I also own the necklace in the first photo, I would think that to be 1920's in era because the shape is more Art Deco it would have been a cheap molded piece back in the day.

The two rings above are mine also.... the one on the right being my all time favorite ring, it cost me a fortune...It is Art Nouveau so turn of the century and Sterling...see the pretty light green enamel in the center.
The ring on the left is cheaper and just rhodium plate circa 1930.

Camphor Glass is extremely rare and good pieces cost the earth, I have been collecting it for over 10 years, I hate to let better pieces go but sometimes I do sell it...either to buy something else,to up grade my collection or because I need the money.
The last piece I sold was a 1900 mourning necklace in all original condition... I was paid close to $700.00 AU so that gives you a bit of an idea of what it is worth.

It is quite rare to get a *set* of camphor glass like the one seen above... that once again I own... but is for sale in my shop.
Age of this one ? I cant say for could be a reproduction, I removed 2 extra dangles from the original necklace to make myself a pair of the above has been corrupted by my own little hands !! tis what happen often over time.

This one is all original except for the chain it is Sterling, and once again around 1900 era... center is marcasite.
I have to admit I have never seen camphor glass jewelery made in gold or yellow gold, it all seems to be sterling, pot metal, rhodium plate or white gold.
It seems that it was often made as pieces of jewelery for "groups" during the 1930's like Stone Masons or Scouts or Women's Associations even for Sorority pins and rings.
Most camphor glass comes from USA or Czechoslovakia it is impossible [almost] to find in Australia, I have had to import all but one of my pieces.

Above is another old one Art Nouveau, base metal is silver tone it was probably once rhodium plate, center is a small purple paste stone...and yes I own this too !! another favorite.

The above pendant is reproduction, this is just to try and show you the difference....I inserted the coral flower center and intend to make a matching chain at some stage.

I am afraid this is as far as I can go re my knowledge of camphor glass jewelery... if you have questions please feel free to contact I said there is not much info out there...I just hope that some of my photos have explained what I can't in words... about the rarity and beauty that is antique camphor glass.

I leave you with some more photos of colored Camphor Glass I do not own them...but I wish I did....
I credit on line seller: Aged and Opulent Jewelery for use of the photos... here is a link to her store

Where to Buy

Beautiful aren't they ? .....I just wish...

Can also be found on eBay... but be careful to buy true vintage and not reproductions.

Monday, April 11, 2011



Anita Pallenberg....what a Gal !!
I have been fascinated by this women for as long as I can remember....
What is she ? Who is she ?
Legend in her own life, the epitome of Rock Chic, Muse to many, famous for just being who she is.
My life long love of "The Rolling Stones" was started by my parents, who actually saw them perform live at the height of their fame in 1972.
But my obsession with Anita started after I had seen the 1970 film "Performance" in which she stared with Mick Jagger and James Fox, of course it was a bit before my time but it was playing in an Art House cinema when I was about 17.
I was awe struck.... by the opulence of the film, the decor, the clothing, the times and the androgynous relationship between Anita and Mick.
I fell in love with both !!
To this day I think my taste is influenced by that movie.

I am going to try and wing it here, without copying someone else's write up so if I get dates and other things wrong... don't sue me !! I am no good writer...

Anita was born in Rome during the 2nd World War in 1944... her Father was Italian and her Mother German or visa versa.
She became a model and actress quite early, and traveled the world, she could speak quite fluently in 3 or 4 languages.
She first met "The Stones" around 1966 when backstage after a show, she offered them some hash.
Soon after Brian Jones... one of the founding members of the group took a fancy to her and they got together, at that stage she had already found her fashion footing, and she influenced the whole band in dress style, especially after they traveled together to exotic places like Morocco.
Brian was a bit of a handful... and at times abused her verbally and physically.
So Keith Richards...good ole "Kif" comes to the rescue on more than one occasion.
And then he fell for her hook line....

Keith and Anita got together...around 1968 ? and lived the very high life...very high... indeed they were together at Redlands ? Keith's estate in the country, when there was a drug bust, that was the talk of the town....and pretty soon both were addicted to Heroin, and using lots of Cocaine..... they had a son together Marlon, around that time.

Kieth and Anita attend court after the Redlands drug bust

Around 1970 The Stone's went to France as tax exiles, because of the amount of money they were loosing to British tax at that time.
Brian Jones was by then dead...he drowned in his swimming pool after being sacked by the band....more than likely it was drug related.
They choose the South of France as a base and decided to make an album there...that album was to become the much acclaimed "Exile on Main Street"
Keith and Anita rented The Villa Nellcote near Nice as their home away from home.
Villa Nellcote was where a lot of the album was recorded, in the basement of the house.... that during the war was a Nazi Headquarters.
It was a very famous... opulent and debouched time in the legend and history of the band.
As well as most of the band living there while recording was going on, there were a lot of visitors, John Lennon, Gram Parsons and Spanish Tony the resident drug dealer... among others.

The frictions between band members at that time are legendary.... most of it having to do with Keith and Mick, did Mick and Anita get it on ? I say yes without a doubt, there are rumors that the sex scenes in Performance were real ...and there was some debate as to who was the Father of Keith and Anita's next child...called Dandelion..but now known as Angela.
The couple struggled on after the long awaited final release of the double album, traveling the world, using drugs and at some stage loosing another child [Tara] to cot death or phenomena at 6 weeks , their turbulent drug fueled life together came to an end around 1980 after Keith was arrested in Canada in possession of Heroin.
After a bit of hard work Keith cleaned up his act to a degree, and became at least not quite so dependent on Heroin, but unfortunately Anita didn't.
Kieth's lawyer told him Anita was not a good influence apparently... and that was the end of that...they never married.

Kieth went on to marry and have more kids, Anita continued her lifestyle for quite a while, until she too got clean.
She lives... I think.. in London and Paris today, she has a good relationship with Kieth her kids and Grand kids she is still a fascinating women, and muse to many, including that other iconic women Kate Moss.... and is still good mates with Mick's ex Marianne Faithfull another legend in her own time.

Anita and Kate
Anita today ...what a life.. but she is still here
Publishers are begging for her to write a tell all book...but her mystic is still intact, she has refused so far... unlike Keith Richards.