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Better Living Through Antiques

In the pursuit of an elegant life I often turn to elegant periods in history.  Recently I found a lovely set of French Antique silverware from the Belle Époque (circa 1870s).  Each piece of silverware has a French coat of arms emblazoned upon it, and each has the makers marks of The French Minerve or Minerva on all, 1st titre designating .950 silver content (higher than the .925 standard for sterling silver). Silversmith marks for Maison Cardeilhac (Emile Cardeilhac, Paris c. 1851-1904).  I just can't wait for my next dinner party when these charming antiques will be used by me and my guests and may even invoke that period known as the Belle Époque. 


Royal Ascot!!!

Here is a nice little slide show from day one at Ascot.  I would love to be there today. 


HURTON - Retro Eccentric

Modern Spanish manufacturing have fallen victim to globalization, cheap Chinese labor, and a strong Euro, yet quality and a refined style can not be made for cheap in ChinaSpain has always been known for a style which is both influenced by their culture and their history.  While the trend moves towards cheap mass produced products and cheap imitations, one modern Spanish car designer appears to be fighting that trend.  Their name is Hurtan Automobiles and their automobiles are like a dream from some golden age of classical autos.  Their automobiles have a retro style and an aesthetic which seem to capture some bygone age when playboys roamed the Riviera with golden hair starlets.  These handmade cars are certainly worth a look even if they are unaffordable for most.  They stand as a representation of the way cars should be; hand manufactured quality and classic aesthetic beauty.  I want one so very badly. www.hurtan.com

May. 27th, 2009

“Wit ought to be a glorious treat like caviar; never spread it about like marmalade” ~ Noel Coward

The Cuff-links of a Royal

My obsession with history and antiques has led me to a recent auction of royal memorabilia in which I purchased this lovely pair of Art Deco cuff-links (circa 1930).  These cuff-links are 18K yellow gold with emerald green, white, and gold enamel, which feature the initials "A W" under a coronet.  They once were the property of Alastair Author Windsor, 2nd Duke of Connaught, and Strathearn (August 9th, 1914 - April 26, 1943).  He was one of the great grandchildren of Queen Victoria.  His death was rather unusual in that he died either passed out or asleep at an open window in Canada, dying of hypothermia as a result.  Today these cuff-links are adorning my French cuffs as I type these lines and have become a happy addition to my every growing collection. Again, history and art are found in an item such as these wonderful cuff-links. 




"I don't regret for a single moment having lived for pleasure. I did it to the full, as one should do everything that one does to the full. There was no pleasure I did not experience. I threw the pearl of my soul into a cup of wine. I went down the primrose path to the sound of flutes. I lived on honeycomb."

~ Written by convict C/3/3 at Reading Gaol, better known as Oscar Wilde.