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There’s a lovely scene in Anna Karenina where Anna is clothed in a navy maternity gown, draped asymmetrically and embellished with a stunning brooch on her left shoulder. If maternity clothes were this gorgeous today, we’d probably see a quick rise in the pregnancy rate. There’s no doubt that a properly placed vintage brooch is the quickest way to take even an ordinary outfit up a notch.

I have a crazy schedule today and I’m recovering from a cold, so I’m sharing a brief post, showing a few really great vintage pieces now in the Etsy shop.

Some people adore diamonds and gems, but I have always been happy with faux costume jewelry––especially when it’s the vintage variety. They are great conversation starters, especially when they’ve been handed down through a family.

Many years ago, I attended an auction with items that belonged to my husband’s great aunts. Among their things was a vast collection of vintage jewelry, part of which I purchased hoping to share with the women in the family.

Afterwards, I passed the box around from household to household, so each sister/sister-in-law could choose whatever she wanted. Each trip, the box was returned without a single withdrawal. At the time, vintage things weren’t coveted, but I was flabbergasted that no one was interested. I tucked the box away, thinking one day I might find a special purpose.

Two Christmases ago, I was thinking about what to buy my two grown nieces for Christmas. Then I remembered the family jewels! I pulled out the box and selected two of the most spectacular pieces–rhinestone necklaces. In all the years we’ve been exchanging gifts, I’ve never seen their eyes light up like the year they received the family rhinestones.

The timing might be just right for you to share “the family jewels.”

What’s your favorite piece of family jewelry?

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.