Thursday, October 23, 2008

What's Up with the Pups?

A few weeks ago, my friend Patricia van Essche forwarded the image of the pin above and queried, "Is this Rosie?"  She had stumbled upon this stick pin at Paris Hotel Boutique.  The yellow collar also seemed fit for the dream house.  

A week or so later I had a chance encounter with a lovely, lovely woman here in Kansas City.  Blonde and elegant, clad in crisp white blouse, I could not help but notice the fabulous pin at her throat.  A large oval dog portrait of a once beloved spaniel, nearly two inches from top to bottom, beautifully set and encircled with seed pearls.  My muse gave me a poke.

So off I went on-line to see what I could see.  Portrait jewelry, be it animals or people, was very popular with the Victorians.

I found a good selection of enamel and Essex Crystal jewelry.  The Essex Crystal pieces were sculpted into a dome on one side, carved out to create the portrait on the back, then painted in reverse.


Most of the settings I uncovered were simple pins or stick pins, but the Pinscher, above, is encircled by his lead.  

The pricing seemed to range quite a bit from very dear to whim-worthy.

But who doesn't have someone on their list who's mad for his or her dog?


Be it his noble hunter?



And while it may not resemble your pooch exactly, you have to appreciate those sentimental Victorians.

They were not afraid to wear their heart on their sleeves.  Or lapels.

Surely, you can't look and those eyes and not bring Lassie home.

24 comments:

Capegirl said...

The elegant blonde woman in the white blouse must be your twin.
Thank you for sharing these beautiful tributes to beloved companions.

Mimilee said...

What an interesting post today, Patricia! I just loved it! I am always looking for items that represent my precious pup and quite understand why these Victorians enjoyed the same! Great Post!

Mrs. Blandings said...

Capegirl - NOT my twin by a long shot - head and shoulders above every crowd, I promise.

Mrs. Blandings said...

mimilee - thanks!

Anonymous said...

This read reminded me of a section in The Nelson that sister Chris introduced me to years ago.

http://www.nelson-atkins.org/art/DecArtsStarrMini.cfm

And then there's this running through the end of November:
http://www.nelson-atkins.org/art/Exhibitions.cfm?id=60

Sounds like a field trip should she come for Thanksgiving.

iloveupstate.com said...

My future Mother-in-Law is dog-obsessed. There are no less than a dozen (gorgeous) dog-centric needlepoint pillows in her country house. They have a showroom in the D&D building so I think she sources them from somewhere in there.

I love stick pins. I forget to wear them (so not a morning person...) but when I come across them in my jewelry box they make me smile.

Mrs. Blandings said...

Anon - yes, I'd forgotten the Starr miniatures. I always want to linger while the boys are dragging me away to see the armor and weapons.

Mrs. Blandings said...

Upstate - I love this new definition of not being a morning person. Me neither, but jewelry is part of the fun. I'd love to see those pillows. Dogs and needlepoint - a girl after my own heart.

Karena said...

How sweet, especially Lassie. Did you see any cute Himalayan cats?

Mrs. Blandings said...

Karena - I'm sure there are cats! I was looking for dogs and so that is what I mostly turned up. Lots of them are very reasonable.

pve design said...

One thing about blogging that I love is shopping for others, spending their money and in return they post things with "FLAIR" that make me spend my own money. Such a reciprocal bunch of bloggers we are.
Sort of the way dogs sniff each other out. One good sniff deserves another.
Did you buy it?

Mrs. Blandings said...

Patricia - I do the same thing for friends on line and in real life. I haven't bought it. Yet. I'm stalking it, though, and the idol's pin didn't help. I'm going to have to work until I'm 110.

Athenaeus said...

Love all the dog baubles. I know the victorians were dog obsessed, but did you run across any other pets: parrots, monkeys, rabbits? I know I've seen lots of horse portrait jewelry in estate cases.

Marilyn said...

Hi, Mrs. Blandings - one of my favorite movies, by the way, the "Mr." version. Got here by way of the inimitable Renovation Therapy.

Love your blog, love the dog pins, and even more - love Paris Hotel Boutique. What's not to love?

Mrs. Blandings said...

Athenaeus - lots of hunt themes, but no exotics - however, truly, was searching for dogs so a wider search might turn up something really great!

Mrs. Blandings said...

Marilyn - so much in common as I adore the movie, the blog and the site as well. Glad you clicked over.

Style Court said...

Loved this intro to a new art form. Such a charming post. I have a mental picture of the blonde now.

(Thanks for all of your kind emails today!)

Visual Vamp said...

Ooooo I smell another collection forming!!! What fun to collect these lovely little gems!
xo xo xo

Mrs. Blandings said...

Courtney - of course!

Mrs. Blandings said...

Vamp - this would be a great collection. Most of these pieces are pretty small - penny size almost.

David said...

Past cufflinks I can't really get away with dog jewelery, but I did buy a plate on ebay 2 weeks ago. One simple, white, 8 inch plate with a gold rim and a perfectly rendered schnauzer in the center. I'm not really a plate guy when it comes to decorating, but he looks just like my Alex so I'm finding a spot.

Mrs. Blandings said...

David - Are you home? I need to check - I've been following the trip to Paris. I have picked up a few boxer things myself - sometimes I can't resist.

Pigtown-Design said...

Saw some yellow lab cufflinks today!

Paris Hotel Boutique said...

Mrs. Blandings, thanks so much for the mention! What a great spread on dog jewelry. LOVE your blog!! Lynn