About a month ago I had a ring epiphany. The scales fell from my eyes, birds sang and a trumpet fanfare rang out. It was like falling in love! Nothing else mattered, and I had to have it. I had to have it NOW!
One ordinary Sunday in early July we decided to go for a day out. We went for lunch one of our favourite Northumbrian pubs, and then on to the pretty town of Allendale for ice cream. There was a cute shop there, I was told, that sold nice antique bits and I might enjoy a browse.
And indeed, and I did. But no one told me about the case of antique jewellery!
I tried a few rings on, which at the time I thought were very beautiful. Now, I can't even remember what they looked like. Right in the middle of the case, there she was. Bright, sparkling, beckoning. Ridiculous in her beauty.
"What the hell," I thought, "I may as well try her on..."
I stared. I drooled. I had nothing to say. Instead I spluttered and mouthed like a goldfish.
You know those rare times when you try a piece of jewellery on, and it's like it already belongs to you? It's like it's YOURS, and suddenly you realise that it has always been yours, it's just that you have been without it for a long time and you've only just remembered you had it. Not to mention the fact she looked SO. DAMN. GOOD.
HOW COULD I MAKE HER MINE?
We left the shop and sat in the sunshine with our ice creams (or rather, John sat in the sun with an ice-cream and I stared into space with a glazed expression on my face).
The only answer was a brutal - brutal - purge of my personal collection. It wasn't going to be easy, but I had to do it, and I had to do it fast and quick. Like ripping off a plaster. But, like ripping off a plaster, after the initial pain had faded, it would TOTALLY be worth it.
***follow me on Instagram @JewelleryHannah for personal collection sales, sneak-peaks and advance previews of new pieces***
So, that evening, I shortlisted. And soon the rings were listed, and soon many of the rings had sold. Ecstatically, I had made my target! So the very next day I drove back to Allendale and, with shaking hands, I bought her. She was MINE.
She's so unusual, I'd never seen anything like her before. What was her story? Was she a conversion, perhaps an earring? Was she designed especially? How old was she? Victorian? Edwardian? Art Deco? I had my own theories. In a way, none of this mattered, but in another way I'm always curious as to the whys and wherefores; it's one of the reasons I love antique jewellery so much, and I love to speculate over what secrets they might hold.
But a couple of weeks later, I had her properly appraised. And my initial ideas were confirmed. She's not a conversion, but was individually designed and made originally as a ring. She is an Edwardian ring, dating from around 1900. She has an 18ct yellow gold shank with knife-edge shoulders and platinum millegrain settings.
The stones are old mine cut diamonds, and are deceptively mounted so they aren't as big as they appear to the eye. The central stone is an old-pear-cut, apparently weighing only .45cts, despite appearances! The total carat weight of diamonds was calculated as 1.3cts, graded mostly at SI1 ranging from H-J colour.
I think she needs a proper name... I'd love to hear your ideas (please comment below)!
Another thing that I love is the fact she's two rings-in-one and I can wear her two different ways, so I can plan my stack according to my mood! Which is your favourite way?
And I'm still pinching myself every time I see her <3