Thursday, August 28, 2008

Vintage B David Rhinestone Jewelry The Breakup

Have you ever wondered what event or special occasion inspired the original owner of your vintage jewelry to purchase it?  I hadn't really given it much thought until I acquired this B. David set that was still in its original box and in mint, unworn condition. You have to wonder why a set this pretty wasn't worn very much, if at all. It wasn't until I examined the box itself that I found out why.

Carefully folded and tucked under the box liner was a handwritten letter on hotel stationary, a small envelope containing a greeting card that would have accompanied a bouquet of flowers and a large tag from the florist shop with the name and address of the unfortunate recipient. First though, the jewelry.

The necklace itself is beautiful combining faux pearls with sparkling aurora borealis rhinestones in both round and marquise cuts. The matching bracelet has the same combination of rhinestones with faux pearls and is just over 1/2" wide. Like Sherman, it has a hidden clasp with safety chain. The clip earrings, although not a perfect match, were made using a combination of round and baguette rhinestones with a generous 2" drop. All pieces are signed B. David, and are in excellent, unworn condition preserved in the original B. David case. Now the history behind the purchase of this pretty rhinestone jewelry!

The stationary was from a hotel in a small town in Georgia and was written by a married man to his mistress. It starts out "Dear Darling" and he begins by apologizing for hurting her stating that his love for his children is the reason he can never leave his wife. He tells her that he was jealous of another man she was seeing and was very hurt by that. He reaffirms his love telling her he wishes he could make her his wife but that it can never be. He writes that someone once told him that one day he would get hurt by losing someone he loved dearly and that this was that day. Of course he ends it with the standard "I'll always be around if you ever need me" line that we've all heard before.  He signs it "Loving you always".

Accompanying this letter was a bouquet of flowers with an old-fashioned cardboard insert with three deep red roses "Love John" and this B. David rhinestone jewelry set. Personally, I thought the letter sounded a lot like something out of the movies from the 40's or 50's, the last scene in Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman comes to mind.

So there you have it, the reason why this pretty set is in mint, UNWORN condition.  I certainly wouldn't want to set eyes on it again if I were her and those flowers would have found themselves either in the trash or mangled from hitting him over the head. Because I purchased this set online, I have no information about "Maggie" or what happened to her after "John" ended their affair (not their real names).

In my version, "Maggie" meets a tall, dark, handsome and SINGLE man who sweeps her off her feet.  They travel the world together and he showers her with precious jewels and magnificent Sherman jewelry (of course!!!!).

She lives a wonderful and exciting life and doesn't give "John" a second thought until 45 years later when she finds this box of B. David jewelry tucked away up high in the back of her walk-in closet. She chuckles to herself when she sees it relieved to have made such a lucky escape.  She carelessly tosses it over her shoulder and in to the pile of her discarded designer clothing. From there it makes its way to a charity auction where it was purchased and then sold online to me. 

Here's looking at you, "Maggie"!!!!



Jacki said...

I found this story really touching. You are a beautiful writer!

Deb said...

You crack me up!! Don't make fun of your old aunt!!


Anonymous said...

I guess I have become soft I started collecting B-David years ago and even applied for a job with them as a sales rep. I started by picking up the crown mother's pins at auctions and garage sales. I would bring them home and look them over and think "wow, what a huge wonderful family this lady had" And then I wonder how someone could give her such a gift and not really give a crap less about passing it on in the family after her passing. How sad. I have well over 20 of them now and my collection continues to grow I have single pieces and whole sets all in original boxes and was hoping to know more about their designers to possibly do a book someday!

Deb said...

Hi Anonymous, you're absolutely right about how little respect these beautiful rhinestone pieces receive once their owner has passed away. One thing I am certain of is that they will be well cared for and appreciated in my own collection but then again, who knows where that may end up one day!

In the meantime, I have very little information on B David although I have a few pieces including a lovely crown pin. It would be wonderful if you are able to do a book for all of us collectors on this wonderful designer.


RhinestonesPast said...

An absolutely wonderfully sad story from the note! I love your version of it, had to giggle a bit though! Your a wonderful writer with a great imagination, & beautiful jewels!