Sunday 27 December 2020

marcasite brooches

Marcasite flower brooch designs.

We have plenty of marcasite brooch designs to choose from – In a wide range of floral and different flowers, flower baskets or in bouquet bunches. You will always find flowers that are more “poetic licence” than actual flowers and so cannot identify what they are. Here we are showcasing a few of the marcasite jewellery we have at some time in our procession. Our sample includes faux marcasite – usually of Stay Brite metal from Charles Horner or just metal that has been moulded with raised “dimples” to imitate marcasite.
Faux marcasite feather leaf brooch by Charles Horner.
faux marcasite leaf brooch back Charles Horner

faux marcasite leaf brooch Charles Horner

Marcasite has been popular since the very early age. It was used in Egyptian times and found in burial chambers. Wat is marcasite – It is not made from actual marcasite – which was found to be very brittle and would break quickly. But from Pyrite or commonly called Fools Gold. It was set into real silver originally, but as costume jewellery progressed. It is also set into cheaper silver coloured metals.

Photographs of marcasite flower brooches.

Faux marcasite flower basket brooch.
Large lily brooch in marcasite by Kigu

Large lily brooch in marcasite by Kigu
Floral marcasite brooch by Exquisite

Real marcasite flower brooch by Exquisite.
Daisy marcasite brooch by Exquisite
Large daisy marcasite brooch by Exquisite.
Marcasite lily brooch with enamel in pale pink. These marcasite brooches can be found in a wide range of colours. Because they were hand enamelled. They all have a slightly different colour pattern and tone.
vintage enamel and marcasite lily brooch pink

vintage enamel and marcasite lily brooch purple

pink and purple enamel lily marcasite brooches above

enamelled marcasite brooch in pretty pastel purple enamelling

Another enamelled marcasite brooch in pretty pastel purple enamelling
enamelled marcasite lily brooch in pretty maroon enamelling
Another vintage enamel lily brooch in a dark maroon enamelling with marcasite. Unsigned.  Circa 1960s.

flower basket marcasite brooch silver

flower basket marcasite brooch silver
The above antique silver flower basket brooch is in a faux marcasite - probably circa 1960s of age.
floral marcasite brooch large
A large marcasite brooch in silver and unsigned. Circa 1960s/1970s of age.

With daisy, lily, tulip, leaf and many other designs – it is hard to choose from. As usual with our blogs – we add photographs of the jewellery we have found on our travels and add them to this blog post.

Wednesday 16 December 2020

Kigu jewellery of London England

Kigu jewellery of London.

The Kigu company manufactured compacts for which it was most famous for - as well as a small range of Kigu jewellery. They also produced enamelled pillboxes, folding mirrors, combs, clocks and other handbag type accessories.

kigu signature on back clip earrings

kigu clip earrings in silver marcasite

kigu clip earring in silver marcasite

The first powder compact was created by Josef Kiaschek in Hungary. Gustav Kiaschek, his son went on to start the company KI-GU in Budapest.

Gustav's three sons emigrated around the world. George arrived in London in 1939 and founded Kigu of London. The Second World War stopped production as with most of the manufacturing companies in the UK. All the factories concentrated on producing items for the war effort. Paul his brother joined the company after World War 11 in 1947. After George died in 1977, his son David joined the company until the early eighties when the company was sold to another compact firm called A S Brown who produced the range of Mascot compacts. Later Laughton & Sons (Stratton) took both the Kigu and Mascot brands and amalgamated it with their own famous brand Stratton.

Jewellery produced by Kigu was well made and seems to have been produced from the fifties. They produced some gorgeous cuff bracelets, earrings, brooches and necklaces. A range of simulated marcasite in earrings and matching brooches called Marquetta were produced in the 1950s. This jewellery was rhodium-plated or 22 CT gold plated. Some of the range were hand enamelled in three alternative colours. The earrings were either clip on, screw or in French wire form. The clipped earrings have a very distinctive clip finding not seen on any other earrings. 
Kigu signature stamp and clip earring mechanism

Production continued into the eighties. The mark they used was Kigu.
Kigu clip on earrings in marcasite and gold plating

Marcasite brooch by Kigu

large lily brooch in marcasite by Kigu

For more photographs of their jewellery and the Marquetta range. Also extensive information with photographs on the Kigu compacts and other accessories visit their informative website. 
Kigu of London - Kigu manufactured compacts for which it was famous for as well as a small range of Kigu jewellery. They also produced enamelled pillboxes, folding mirrors, combs, clocks and other handbag type accessories.

Monday 14 December 2020

Let us see your Christmas jewellery to make a festive statement

 Wearing Christmas jewellery

Ever year at Christmas, a whole range of festive Christmas jewellery is produced. So let us see your Christmas jewellery to make a festive statement. From Christmas tree brooches to Santa earrings and Xmas necklaces. Many are of the novelty style in bright colours. Worn at the office or at Christmas parties. However this year will be quite different. With no parties or even going to the office is no longer allowed. As the Corona Virus sweeps across the world, many of the usual festive activities can not be held. But that doesn't mean that you can not brighten up your day by wearing your Christmas jewellery around the house, for conference calls, for shopping and for small family gatherings. 

Here are a selection of Christmas jewellery, we have collected over the years. Maybe you own some of these?  These all have some designs that are traditionally associated with the festive season.   

A large angel bear brooch with a festive bow detail. Made of resin. From the 1980s to 1990s. 
A more modern deer brooch in black acrylic. Plain but effective and unsigned.
Handmade cameo brooch by Gothic White Witch. This candy cane Christmas cameo has been coloured in black for that something different. Surrounded by a silver frame.
Dropper earrings of small Santa cats. These pewter metal pair have enamelled Father Christmas red hats on their heads. Produced by Avon a few years ago in a set of different images. Unsigned and now often found separated from the original collection. Some had a matching brooch. 
A large novelty father Christmas bear brooch. This silver metal bear figural is wearing a Santa hat and red enamelled waist coat. Unsigned and produced in the 1990s to 2000s.
A festive Christmas brooch of a pair of bells. Each bell is studded with red diamante and has enamel holly leaf detail. Unsigned and made around the 1990s to 2000s.

Enamelled Christmas bell brooch with holly decoration. Unsigned
Love the Christmas image on this paper mache brooch. Square shaped and painted in glossy black with father Christmas in his sleigh. The reverse also has a festive image so that if it turns whilst wearing - it is still a brilliant Christmas necklace to wear. 
Large pair of Christmas mice earrings. These clip on earrings have resin mice figural in a light blue colour with Christmas hats and scarf holding Christmas presents. Unsigned and brilliant novelty wear. Pre-owned and from the early 2000s.
This Xmas pudding badge has a cheerful face with yellow custard hair and holly decoration. Made of a rubbery material and from the early 2000s. 
Christmas tree brooch by Danecraft, I think. An American company Gerry's.
Pretty Christmas bell brooch in bright red with a holly design. Unsigned.
A golden Xmas tree necklace by Gothic White Witch with a large cameo pendant.
The silver version of the Christmas tree cameo brooch by Gothic White Witch.
Pretty 1960s vintage snowflake brooch with clear diamante. Unsigned.
A little bit different. A Bethlehem brooch with real flowers collected on a Bethlehem visit.
Disney produce a range of fabulous enamel brooches . This one has Eeyore wearing his red Santa hat.
A 1970s enamel Christmas candlestick brooch. Unusual.

A 1980s vintage candle pin brooch with a white enamel candle that has a festive design. 
Cute Father Christmas earrings for pierced ears. Unsigned and from the early 2000s.
This is a 1980s vintage Santa brooch pin with him carrying a sack of toys. Enamel and bright red colours. Small in size and unsigned.
Not the best but a small Father Christmas pin badge of his head. 
Can't be without a pair of Christmas bauble earrings. This pair are in gold colours and for pierced ears. Large in size.
Holly brooch from the 1960s. With a red cabochon centre and enamel holly around the outside. Unsigned. 
A very unique Jesus brooch. This red rose and personalised with the name Jesus in silver metal. Unsigned and probably from the 1970s.
Fabulous Christmas Joy brooch in resin. Love the look of this one and probably 1960s to 1970s of origin. Joy in bold red letters with a holly garland. Unsigned.
Small Macmillan charity pin with Rudolph sporting a red Christmas jumper. 
This angel jewellery set from Avon has pewter brooch and matching earrings. The angel brooch has the words "Merry Christmas" on the front. Unsigned and from a range of pewter jewellery made by Avon in years gone bye.
Back of the cute Christmas necklace shown above.
Another Disney brooch with Mickey Mouse featured. These are quite large and signed.
Modern Christmas tree brooch. I add this tree design to my growing collection every year. 
More modern lightweight bell and Santa brooch pins. Made of plastic and very traditional.
Again not the best but a Christmas tree badge with stockings and a star. Made in resin.
Cute reindeer earrings by Avon. In pewter with red and white enamel to their Santa hats. Would have been originally sold in a set.
Large Santa Baby earrings in gold metal. Each hoop has the words Santa and baby in the middle. Kitsch pair for pierced ears.
Dropper earrings with enamelled Santa design. For pierced ears and in bright red and white 
Glitter bell jewellery set by Avon. A bell brooch in silver and red with matching dropper earrings for pierced ears. Unsigned but in their original box.
A large skating bear brooch wearing a woollen hat and scarf. Not obviously for Xmas but a great winter accessory. Circa early 2000s of age.
Resin candle brooch pin. Small with a bright red candle and holly design.
Enamelled snowman badge from the 1980s. This is the one I wore when working at Christmas as a midwife. those days we wore our hospital badges and other insignia on our uniforms. 
Last in this blog (for now) is a small Paddington bear badge. This is a copy of the original Paddington as it looks slightly off. Made in China badge pin. 

I have many other Christmas jewellery to show. Just got to find the time to photograph. But have a lovely Christmas this year and see you soon.

About Me

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Solihull, West Midlands, United Kingdom
I preserve the past. Researching family and local history. Finding about mine and other people's ancestors, is just one of my passions. I also love vintage costume jewellery made here in the UK. I write about my finds and like to research.