We caught up with one of our favorite jewelry bloggers, Danielle Miele of the ultra popular Gem Gossip, while she was in town for our Estate Jewelry Show last month. She’s known for her love of antique and period jewelry (she’s been collecting jewelry since she was four), so we got her to dish on her favorite pieces, the #1 thing on her wish list and more. Read on to see what she said!
When did your love affair with jewelry start?
I think I was about four years old…I was obsessed with the set of encyclopedias—I would make my mom get the “D” volume down and I would stare at the diamond pages. I remember looking at the photos of people mining for diamonds and pictures of diamonds themselves. From there it branched out to actual jewelry and my grandma helped foster my love by bringing home pieces of gold jewelry for me and my sisters when they would visit Italy, their homeland.
What are your favorite time periods for estate jewelry?
I’m all over the map! I love Art Deco for its filigree and geometric lines, I love Victorian because it is so sentimental and very collectible…I also love big, bold yellow gold from the 60s & 70s. Each time period is so unique and I love learning about the history within each.
How does jewelry make you feel?
Jewelry makes me excited and definitely happy. Anytime someone asks me about a particular piece of jewelry that I am wearing, I instantly enjoy telling its story. It can make my shyness disappear.
What does your jewelry say about you?
I wear different jewelry every day, except for my engagement ring, that’s the only thing that stays the same! To me, jewelry says a lot about my mood and how I’m feeling and it changes with each day, so I wear something different each day. I encourage my readers to do the same. I can’t imagine wearing the same jewelry every single day—that’s like wearing the same outfit every day.
What would your advice be to someone wanting to start a collection of estate/antique jewelry?
My best piece of advice would be to start as soon as you can! Next, I would say to begin with buying basics or classics and continue filling in with pieces that catch you eye. Your style will always be transforming and changing, so go with what you’re loving at the moment. Also, make sure to educate yourself as much as possible. My blog has tons of information on so many different topics of antique jewelry—you can start there!
What is the one piece on your wish list?
I would love to own a piece from Cartier someday. Their legacy and timelessness is highly respectful, and I’ve read two Cartier books so far, so I also love their history.
What was the first piece of estate jewelry you bought for yourself?
My first piece I ever bought came from a local watch shop where I grew up. It is what made me fall in love with antique and estate jewelry—when I saw the dainty diamond and sapphire filigree ring in the case, it was like the whole world had stopped for a moment. I had to have it! I traded in the rings on my fingers and put it on layaway. I worked hard to pay a little every month and remember rushing to go pick it up when it was finally finished being paid off. I still have that ring!
Why are rings your favorite type of jewelry?
Rings are my favorite because they are so personal and sentimental. I like that I can see them throughout the day just by looking down at my hands—you can’t see your earrings or necklaces usually unless you look into a mirror. The history of rings in general is also quite fascinating.
We loved having you at Bailey’s for our Estate Trunk Show! Since you travel all over the world, what did you like about Bailey’s? What was special or different?
I enjoyed every minute of my visit to Bailey’s! I was so impressed by their antique and estate collection and to realize this is a new section just recently put together. From the looks of all the pieces and how everything is displayed, it seemed as though they’ve been offering estate jewelry for over 30+ years! Everything is covetable and highly curated—such a great selection. I also loved the interior of the store, especially the wedding/engagement section. Truly a slice of heaven. Lastly, the family atmosphere and friendly/welcoming staff was something that can’t be beat! That dynamic is hard to find in most jewelry stores!