Sparkle Plenty

My latest finds were at an estate sale in the neighborhood this weekend. The jewelry collection was small but fun to look at – there was a large collection of animal figurals, a few old charm bracelets, a couple of huge CZ rings, and some neat old lipstick cases.

The first treasure I found was this pot metal brooch with pave marcasites. I spotted it in the case and asked if it were a Duette or pin that comes apart to make two clips but the salesperson said she didn’t this so. Once I bought it and felt comfortable tugging on the parts, I saw that it was, indeed, a convertible brooch. It converts from a pin to two dress clips when removed from the mechanism that holds them all together. I wrote collect dress clips and shoes clips, so I was very pleased to find this. It has a little jeweler’s mark, an arrow with two perpendicular lines going through it, but I couldn’t find out who made it. I think it’s from the 1930s or early 1940s.
Double brooch

Double brooch split

Double brooch split 3

The next thing I looked at were these cute plastic earrings – I don’t know if they are lucite or Bakelite but the color combination is wonderful – amber-colored plastic with green and clear rhinestones. Plastic earrings with green and clear rhinestones I would guess these were made in the 1930s or 40s.

I’m not usually drawn to figurals because they’re too cutesy but the color of this little purple cat was wonderful – the rhinestones are aurora borealis violet and they’re set on japanned pot metal. A rhinestone is missing but that makes him even more special (and such a deal!!) Purple pave cat 1960s, maybe?

An aside – I don’t remember much about Sparkle Plenty in the Dick Tracy comics; what I do remember are the really neat gadgets he had, and his very cool hat.


Two clips and a brooch

My vintage jewelry obsession includes all kinds of clips: shoe clips, dress clips, fur clips, clip earrings. From the 1920s through the 1950s, various dual purpose clips were patented. Dress clips and fur clips were sold in pairs with a separate frame with a pin on the back.  The clips could be temporarily attached to the frame to make one brooch, or worn separately as two or three. I have two brooches that separate into pairs of clips – one separates into dress clips, and the other into fur clips.

This first piece is a Coro Duette, and is likely from the 30s or 40s; the frame mechanism was patented in 1931. The brooch separates into two fur clips. The long, dangerous looking double-pronged clip was apparently to clip onto one’s fur; it could hold two sections of a thick fur stole than a regular dress clip. I purchased this at Magpie Vintage.

Coro Duette brooch - attached

Coro Duette - two fur clips

I’ve had this Weiss clip pin (shown below) for years . It’s a dress clip from sometime after 1942, when the Weiss jewelry company was founded. This piece doesn’t have a patent number but it is marked “Weiss.” You can see that the clip mechanism isn’t short enough to be a shoe clip, and doesn’t have the double-pronged clip that a fur clip typically does.

Weiss brooch - attached

Weiss brooch - two dress clips

For more information on vintage clips, see Illusion Jewels.