Just Looking

I’ve been in France. Where I thought perhaps I might buy a bijou or two. There’s an antique jewelry store called Dary’s in the Rue Saint Honoré in Paris—one of the most expensive shopping streets in town—that I was determined to revisit. Fortunately for my budget, I got there at the end of July, just… Continue reading Just Looking

Highland Bling

I am fairly sure I have not one drop of Scottish blood in my veins. It’s all Jewish, as far as I know. Had I been born in Aberdeen rather than Syracuse, New York, I would still consider myself a Jew and not a Scot, because we Jews have an inborn legitimate fear of getting kicked out… Continue reading Highland Bling

Love For Sale

Buying jewelry is like buying a car: the minute you drive it home, it’s worth substantially less than what you just paid for it. If you go to sell it, you will not get all your money back, or even most of your money back. You’ll get whatever pittance the market offers you. I’ve bought many… Continue reading Love For Sale

Ambabeads

I was ten. Not even. My mother had unearthed from somewhere a strand of reddish faceted beads with a broken clasp. They were translucent and lightweight and sparkled in all directions. They were the prettiest things I’d ever seen. I asked what they were. “Ambabeads,” said my mother. They belonged to her sister Leanore and… Continue reading Ambabeads

The Spoils of Santa Fe

It needs to be said: We go to Santa Fe to see the opera and not to buy jewelry. We’ve been going for the past nine years, during which time I have bought an absolute shitload of jewelry. Something comes over me in that rarefied air and preternaturally clear light: I become a woman possessed by turquoise, as though I… Continue reading The Spoils of Santa Fe

In Praise of Glass

I’m a sucker for the real thing, and sometimes the real thing is glass. Though it’s manmade, glass is as ‘natural’ as any other gem, being based on silica (silicon dioxide, or quartz), the main component of sand. Melting sand into glass, and adding traces of other minerals to produce various colors, is not only advanced technology, it’s high art. What… Continue reading In Praise of Glass

Girls with Snakes

I do like real ones, provided they’re not venomous. Snakes, I’ve always thought, have nice smiles. And they’re not the least bit slimy—they’re sleek and dry, and go about their business quietly. Snake jewelry, however, is something I never aspired to own until I started collecting old Mexican silver and saw the playful, powerful snake designs… Continue reading Girls with Snakes