Friday, October 14, 2011

The Tableau Collection - Keepsake Lockets

Too precious! How many of us kept a lock of hair from our children's first haircuts?

Once I get and idea in my head, I can become a little OCD.  Such has been the case this past summer and early fall in my quest to find antique lockets, brooches and clasps that can be used to create little “Tableaus” or pictures.  Historically, these lockets were used to house not only photos of family members and sweethearts, but a lock of their hair.  The hair was often plaited, woven or styled to create a “Prince of Wales” plume.  An interesting fact I discovered - when men/boys went off to fight during the Civil War, they often left behind a lock of hair for their wives and sweethearts in the event they did not come home.  Someone recently said to me, “That’s creepy!”.  Personally, I disagree - as humans we have been collecting hair from our children (first curl/haircut), family, sweethearts and pets as little mementos since the dawn of man.  
Many of these gorgeous lockets and brooches have not survived with the original hair intact, so I think it is only fair to try and preserve the unique workmanship of these gorgeous lockets by incorporating them into little “pictures”.  I have filled the recesses of these lockets with very small gemstones and sometimes, if there is room, a vermeil charm that can tell a story.

via Project Style

Ava Necklace - French Paste Reliquary Brooch with rubies and carved labradorite leaves.
The Ava Necklace was once a reliquary brooch.  The brooch was filled with little rubies, a carved labradorite leaf and a Byzantine cross.  Most antique brooches have a pin that extends outside the diameter of the brooch.  Rather than snip the pin, thus devaluing the piece - a small round bead has been added for comfort.


Morgaine Necklace - 14k gold Cannetille turquoise locket with 1ct. white topaz.  How cute is this French Napoleonic Bee?
The Morgaine Necklace has a delicate chain of the most minuscule turquoise is interspersed with beautiful blue kyanite faceted beads and flanked by smooth spring-green chrysoprase rondelles.  The dainty chain is the perfect accent to highlight the gorgeous and complex 14K gold cannetille and turquoise locket (ca.1830).  The tiny glass compartment of the locket has been filled with 1ct. of white topaz while a grouping of kyanite, chrysoprase and sleeping beauty turquoise briolette amulets acts as the background for a regal little vermeil Napoleonic bee.  The locket can be easily removed and worn as a brooch.

Katie Stassi

via Design Fabulous

Siren's Song Necklace - Step-faceted aquamarine nuggets & mermaid riding a seahorse on a frothy wave of aquamarine bubbles.

Keeping pace with the recent New York Fashion Week’s Spring 2012 haute couture influence of the mermaid silhouette, the exquisite Siren’s Song Necklace is certain to make a splash.  The gorgeous and highly desirable color-saturated aquamarine faceted nuggets, only serve to enhance the diaphanous antique French silver paste locket (ca. 1900) filled with a 24k gold vermeil mermaid riding a seahorse in a frothy wave of aquamarine bubbles.
Now for the truth - I still have several of these lockets waiting to be made up - it seems as though I can’t resist the gorgeous designs.  If you are interested in having one made up with keepsake elements that represent your life, leave me a little comment or email me at