Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Vintage Bride & Groom Wedding Cake Toppers

With summer comes weddings. Vintages has a nice variety of gifts for the bridal party (both groomsmen and ladies-in-waiting), special bridal jewelry (including sparkling engagement rings) and a large collection of vintage wedding cake toppers.
Part of the Vintage Bride & Groom Wedding Cake Toppers available at Vintages
The nostalgic bride and groom figures that have traditionally adorned wedding cakes can serve a multitude of purposes. Of course there is nothing better to place atop the wedding cake. But these make wonderful gifts for showers and anniversaries. How about having one included in the flower arrangement near the wedding book, or even as part of the table centerpieces? Tie one into the ribbon and bow on the wedding gift. Place one into a wedding basket with champagne or candy. The possibilities are limited only by your imagination.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

How About Some Gifts for Father's Day?

Father's Day is Sunday, June 19th

From the first moments of life, the bond forged between a father and a child is sacred ... Fathers are our first teachers and coaches, mentors and role models.  They push us to succeed, encourage us when we are struggling, and offer unconditional care and support.  Children and adults alike look up to them and learn from their example and perspective.  The journey of fatherhood is both exhilarating and humbling it is an opportunity to model who we want our sons and daughters to become, and to build the foundation upon which they can achieve their dreams.
-Excerpt from Barack Obama's Father's Proclamation for 2010

Father's Day is truly a special day. I have always been amazed how much smarter my Dad became as I got older! I guess we have a tendency to take our fathers a bit for granted, not fully appreciating them for all that they are, until later ... especially when we have children of our own.

We have a lot of gifts for that special man of yours here in Vintages. Check us out in the shop, or at one of Vintages' online sites: Vintages on Trocadero and Vintages Online Shop.
Grands Vin Wine Bucket, in two sizes for $24.95 and $29.95.
Vintages has a variety of magnifiers and desk sets.
Santa Fe Stoneworks hand crafted key chain knives and other desk accessories.
Inspirational Paperweight Stones ($7.95 each)
Money clips, both newly hand crafted and vintage keepsakes (from $22)
Desk accessories: compasses and telescope sets, frames and letter openers, desktop globes and magnifying glasses.
Vintage games and toys, playing cards and stuff!
And remember to say Happy Father's Day with a special greeting card from Vintages.
We love you Dad!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

DEAREST Little Gold Music Box

They say that good things come in small packages. Well how about this?

This is a tiny Swiss made music box pendant that plays a sweet little tune and has a hidden message as well. The musical notes in the decoration are studded with seven precious gemstones. The first letters of the gemstones spell out DEAREST ... Diamond, Emerald, Amethyst, Ruby, Emerald, Sapphire, Topaz. This little acrostic was popular in late Victorian jewelry. The box itself is crafted of 14k gold and the tiny musical movement is made by Colibri, one of the finest Swiss makers.

Wouldn't this be an absolute delight to wear?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Collection: Bottle Tickets (aka: Decanter Labels or Bottle Tags)

Wine and liquor bottle tags first appeared in the mid-1720s and were known as bottle tickets back then. At that time they replaced the paper tickets, or labels, that were hung on or attached to bottles to identify the contents. While these started off as plain silver rectangles, cartouches or escutcheons, by the end of the 18th century these had become quite ornate at times. 

By the beginning of the 1800s these fancier tickets became known as decanter labels to reflect the better quality of the spirits being kept in the bottles as well as the higher degree of design that was exhibited. In 1860, the English made it legal for shops to sell individual bottles of wine and spirits, provided that the bottle had a paper label describing its contents. Bottle tickets disappeared and decanter labels were used only when wine or spirits were decanted and kept in a separate, and usually fancier, container. In the twenties, and again in the forties, every bar had to have its selection of decanters containing scotch, whiskey, sherry and port, appropriately marked with hanging bottle tags.
While the vast majority of the collectible bottle tags are silver, there are many interesting specimens made of enameled metals, porcelain, brass and even glass. Also, the practice of hanging a label on a bottle was not limited to wine and spirits. Caster sets, vanity bottles and perfumes were also marked with hanging tags, albeit these were typically smaller than those for their alcoholic cousins.

The book Collecting Small Silver by Stephen Helliwell devotes a whole chapter to tags and other spirit related silver items. Here are a few of the photographs from his book, showing 18th century silver labels.

Bottle tickets, decanter labels or bottle tags (whatever you prefer) make a wonderful collection, as they are small and lend themselves to many different forms of display. Each one is a little piece of art all by itself, and they can be used as well!
We have a nice selection of bottle tags available here at Vintages in sterling silver, as well as silver plate, brass, porcelain and even pottery.
Sterling Silver Bottle Tags (from $45.00 to $69.00 each)
Porcelain Bottle Tags ($9.95 each)
Silver Plate Bottle Tags ($18.00 each)
Brass Bottle Tags ($14.00 each)

Bottle tags are still made today in silver and silver plate. But today's artisans do not stop there. These pottery labels give the genre a new twist. They convey greetings such as Happy Birthday and Thanks, as well as Paris and the Eiffel Tower. These work wonderfully when hung from a nice bottle of wine or spirits as a gift, or used as napkin rings. They would look great on a leather cuff as a bracelet.
Pottery Bottle Tags ($9.95 each)
Another trend we have seen is the use of tags on jewelry, hung on necklaces and attached to bracelets. So crafters, get ready!
Hand Crafted Silver Bottle Tag Necklace offered on Trocadero.com
Hand Crafted Bottle Tag Bracelet offered on Etsy.com
Bottle Tag using one of Susan's Soldered Pendants
Another Solder Pendant Bottle Tag

What's New at Vintages?

I just thought I would take you on a quickie tour of what's up in the shop. Many of the items from our January shopping at the shows have finally arrived. We have lots of new Paris themed accents, some cool garden accessories, a great set of tin boxes, metal baskets and wicker covered bottles ... and we finally got the large cage Santos in.  Plus we have a few great wall mirrors on display. Recently we acquired a nice batch of Victorian jewelry and antique silver. And for the crafters, we have added some new rubber stamps and crafting doo-dads.
Love this bench and pillows. The wicker covered bottles are new too! The vintage watering cans are great for the garden room. The large fleur-de-lys is made from old tin ceiling tiles and reclaimed wood.
PARIS • Anytime!

Travel journals will just look better in these colorful little notebooks.
Outdoor (or indoor) candle holders, a great little birdcage and Alise Sheehan's NEST branch.
Beach and garden accents.
Birds, flowers and wonderful things!
These little twig bird houses and nests are great on their own or mixed in with flowers and plants.
Tin boxes, metal buckets and metal wire baskets.
Chintz is the perfect pattern for a garden coffee break.
Accents in pottery, glass, metal and pewter.
Antique doorstops and bookends are the perfect conversation pieces.
Vintage crystal ... wine never looked or tasted so good!
Glass handled magnifiers on a vintage Italian wood tray.
Antique metal drugstore storage boxes.
Wonderful old German and French tea cups, pitchers and mustard jars.
Signature runner, linen towels and sachets.
Handcrafted lava glass bowl & vase.
Antique miniature frames in gilded brass and silver.
Vintage bathing beauties and half-dolls.
Colorful German turn-of-the-century vanity ladies ... perfume bottles, pin jars and a vase.
Beads ... beads ... and more beads!
Antique cameos.
Vintage costume jewelry.
Vintage bracelets, necklaces and pendants.
Victorian brooches, pins and pendants.
Here's our latest Santos.
Another Santos, some shoe forms, old red transferware and a silver tea set.
Beautiful scarves and a wonderful wicker desk.
Silver & crystal vanity bottles and jars.

Silver shakers and toothpick holders.

More silver tableware.
And all of this On Los Gatos Time!
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