Celluloid love

I’ve spent the past month skimming the celluloid and enamel jewelry listings on eBay. I love the cheerful vintage colors and happy characters and flowers that the jewelry comes in… and the idea of my earrings spontaneously bursting into flame is productive of a certain joie de vivre that modern jewelry just can’t match.


Some of what I collected is not actually vintage, just reminiscent of. Some of it, I’m fairly sure, isn’t actually celluloid but lucite or another plastic.


All of the pieces I got, though, I’m crazy in love with. How great are the colors? How darling are the pieces? And the most important question…


How do I pull off wearing this stuff so that it looks all hip and vintage, and not like I raided my great-aunt Madge’s jewelry box? Hmmmm.


Hmmm. That is a poser. I’ll think on it, though I’m sure that casual summer clothes will make it easy–especially the Marilyn-style sundresses I also found on eBay (available from seller InspiredByAngels, and easily gettable for $20-$25).


Two pieces vie as my favorites, in this collection. First, this pink, starry little owl, which has had pride of place on the lapel of my white coat for the last two weeks. Isn’t he just too precious? This is one of the new-manufacture pieces, I’m sure.


And second, this darling buggy chatelaine. Back when I really was raiding my great-aunt Madge’s jewelry box, I found two items that my mother called “shawl pins”. They had small lobster-claw clasps connected by stout chains and were used, she told me, to hold a sweater over your shoulders. These buggies are attached to tiny brooch pins and connected by a very slight chain, so they shouldn’t be depended upon to carry any weight.

They have a delightful secret, though. Do you see that their wings are parted? And do you see a bit of cotton-wool sticking out? They’re hollow, and stuffed with it. You are supposed to soak them with perfume, so you smell nice all day.



3 thoughts on “Celluloid love

  1. For the brooches, I vote for cute cardigans with modern details like really big buttons or extra-wide hemming, and in really fresh, modern colors! (Pale pink might look a tad matronly. Bright aqua would be fun, though!)

    You have such excellent taste. A former roommate of mine said she cultivated “old-lady chic,” which consisted of a lot of cardigans, cute flats, pearls, and vintage rhinestone brooches in shades of pink, cream, brown, and grey. I like your version better.

    Can’t wait for spring. We have massive flooding and now a blizzard up here. All I want to do is wear cute skirts and vintage style dresses and pull out all my cute spring shoes! Lol… Oh well. Just another two or three months…

  2. Exactly what I’m trying! I’m glad someone agrees with me. We’re still in wool-sweater weather, here, but I have cotton cardigans all lined up to go with this stuff. I think I need to be wearing sandals and capris, too. (sigh) Springtime…

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