Monday, April 30, 2012

Getting Sentimental About Vintage Postcards

If you are a frequent visitor to my blog
then you'll notice I have a thing for

Especially the kind with beautiful
images of roses.

I like to go through them, admire the artwork,
 and I'll even read them.
This one caught my eye because the address
section was written a little bit different
from the rest.

It reads:
Send me along in a rambling way,
To Millerstown Perry Co, Penna
There then let me be:
Till Mr. William Bitting
Calls for Me.

I just thought it was the sweetest sentiment
and thoughtful way to send a postcard.

Although, I'm sure if we did this now,
in most of our cities, it would
not arrive to it's destination.

But it is a time captured
forever on a postcard.

When the postman knew
there was only one person in that town
named William Bitting.

These are the sweet rewards of
antiquing buying and collecting.

I also found a few other
sweet finds this past weekend.

Stay tuned for a sneak
peek, coming up in my next post! 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Little House on the Lake

I've been thinking about lakes and lake houses for the past few months.
We are very close to getting one.

Should we paint it pink like this sweet little cottage?

My husband would say "uh, probably not!"
While I may not get to paint it my favorite color
I have been looking on Pinterest for
decorating ideas.
Here are a few of my favorites so far:

Just look at the homemade bunting...
the blue porch swing, pillows and the white wicker!

There is an attic bedroom perfect for the kids.
I am on the hunt for matching twin beds.
Everytime we find them on craigslist they're sold
before we can get them.
I'm sure a little patience will pay off.

Source: via Jillian's Bella on Pinterest

OR maybe red?
Minus the gigantic fish.

This is also charming!
The vintage ribbons and trophies
 really give it a cottage feel.

Pretty soon I will do a post about the
lake house we've found.
I've been waiting to see
if it all goes through...

For now I am "pretend" decorating
and loving every minute of it!

Linking to a Patriotic Link Party here.

Linking to Pink Saturday.
Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Turning Vintage Jewelry Into New Gems

I've seen some pretty cool stuff on Pinterest lately:

Like making new glamorous pieces of jewelry
 by using a few vintage baubles and necklaces.

Or how about a wreath of  silvery, shiney, rhinestone pins?

The following pictures are good examples
 of things that make you say
"Now why didn't I think of that?"
Lovely old vintage earrings turned into bracelets.
Love it!

And the same for these vintage ladies watch faces.
So unique! No two would be alike!

I hope I've inspired you today!
Which one is your favorite?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Keeping Up Wtih My Vintage Past

We come across lots of old photos and
ephemera in our searches for antiques.

It makes me wonder...why didn't anyone
 in the family want to keep them?

The picture below is not of strangers...
It is from my family's collection.

I'm not quite sure who the gentleman is on the left
but the pretty lady in the middle is my
Great Grandmom Minnie and
to the right, Great Grandfather Benjamin.

They are walking along the Atlantic City boardwalk.

Just looking at this photo makes me happy.
I'm keeping these photos and
mementos to treasure because
they're my family.

Knowing who you are and where
you came from is pretty cool.
It's my "vintage past."

Hopefully they'll be handed down to the next
generation and not

 In a basket
On a table

at a fleamarket someday.

Friday, April 20, 2012

A Little Romance, A Little Business, A Little Housekeeping

Getting a little housekeeping done here today....
and I don't mean the kind that requires AJAX although it is badly needed!

Taking care of some needed posts and combining them into one:

First, an update on kitty!

Here is my sweet Sissy cat when she was just a wee baby,
ten years ago.

Let me hear a collective "Awwwwwwwww!"

 Here she is, a grown up, "big girl"
We took her to the vet today to have her stitches out.
About a week ago or so she had surgery for a very bad laceration
to her back foot. There was a nasty stray cat who attacked her so no more going outside for Miss Sissy.

The vet was thrilled with how it was healing and said "it has healed better than it had the right to heal!" I think he impressed himself!

Either way, I am impressed and so happy she is better.
Thank you for all of the wonderful and kind words of cheer
you sent to me!

And for a little romance this week I was thrilled to see
my new ad in Romantic Homes Magazine!

Look at all of these other shops,
led by creative and bright women

I feel honored to share the page with them! 

Thank you to Erica of Meadow Street for creating this ad template
for me. I get to replace the picture each time with whatever I want.

Here are some of my latest finds... some with pink and some
with a bit of an Industrial touch.
I just added a new category for those items
that are a bit metal and a bit rusty.

Hope you have a super weekend!
Now, to get to the house cleaning...

Linking to Pink Saturday!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Industrial Revolution A New Category for Bella Rosa!

There's a revolution going on at Bella Rosa Antiques.

Adding a new category for items
that aren't shabby, or chic

but maybe more of the metal and rust type.

We're not just all about flowers around here.

Stay tuned, I'm almost done listing my latest finds!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Antique Finds of the Week - A Sneak Peek!

Getting up early is not as easy as it used to be.
But when beautiful weather is the forecast
there is no excuse for sleeping!

Below are my finds from shopping early yesterday
morning at my favorite market:

Old books, sweet framed prints
and hankie holders.

 Antique needlepoint cover from an old album.
It is hard to see but in the middle is the word "Hello"

Vintage china and porcelain

An old perfume bottle marked PARIS

And a sweet Shelley teacup in the violets pattern.

There's a lot more (old scrabble type letters, books, more letterpress blocks, vintage pin basket, chenille table runner, film reels) but I won't have them up on the site
until Thursday evening...

Stay tuned!

Monday, April 16, 2012

History of Whiting & Davis

Last week I listed some of my best finds so far.

One being this beautiful mesh bag from the 1920's.
What I didn't notice: It was marked none other than
Whiting and Davis!

Excited about my new discovery, I'd like to share some
info I dug up on these little beauties...

The history on how the company started, taken from this page:

Whiting & Davis began in 1876 as Wade, Davis & Company in Plainville, Mass. Even though the company is recognized primarily for making quality metal mesh handbags, they began by producing jewelry such as brooches, bar pins, chatelaine chains, hat pins, and cuff links, according to the Whiting & Davis Web site.

Charles Whiting, first hired as an errand boy by Wade, Davis & Company in 1876, worked his way into management, and eventually became a partner in the firm in 1886. The company name was changed at that time to Whiting & Davis. By 1907, Whiting was the sole owner of the company.

The First Whiting & Davis Metal Mesh Handbags

Charles Whiting made the first mesh bag for the new Whiting & Davis Company in 1892. The bags that followed over the next two decades were made completely by hand. In fact, many were made by local women in “sewing circle” fashion who worked linking about 1,000 rings a day - a slow and laborious process, and one that Whiting found to be unreliable.
Working with a young inventor named A.C. Pratt, Whiting developed an automated mesh machine in 1912. Mesh for handbags could then be produced at the rate of 400,000 links a day, and in varying sizes, which grew the company’s production capacity significantly, according to Antique Purses by Richard Holiner (Collector Books).
By 1920, the company expanded from 12 mesh production machines to 500. Company growth during this period was so rapid that a branch was opened in Canada, and offices also maintained in New York and Chicago. By 1926 when a new factory was built, “Whiting & Davis was considered the world’s largest manufacturing house of its kind,” the company’s Web site maintains.
From 1912 through 1925, most of the bags Whiting & Davis produced were fashioned of sterling silver or vermeil (essentially gold plating over sterling silver). These were small bags with silk linings and hand engraved frames. Many were set with genuine sapphires and other gemstones. In 1923, First Lady Grace Coolidge carried a specially made gold handbag to her husband’s inauguration.
But as the 1920s wore on, Whiting & Davis began to explore other lower priced options for handbag manufacture making them available to a wider clientele.

Enter the Era of Painted Mesh Bags

While some higher priced bags combining sterling silver with gold-filled metal were also produced in the latter 1920s, an effort was made to “broaden appeal and lessen the price,” Holiner shared. Bags were then made of base metals, silver or gold plated brass, copper, and nickel silver (a form of false silver), and the frames were machine stamped rather than hand engraved.
The flat mesh bags made during this period were painted with vivid patterns, while the fine mesh bags, also known as Dresden mesh, had softer hues and a more muted appearance. They were all decorated, according to Holiner, through silk screening accomplished over several days – one color dried for 24 hours before another color was applied. In 1929, Whiting & Davis produced a large collection of mesh bags designed in conjunction with French fashion designer Paul Poiret, including what is now referenced as the Poiret Pouch.
Many clever and beautiful styles came about during this period including the Dylesia hinged bag fitted with a powder compact. Many bags with Art Deco themed enameling were also produced, and these are highly favored by collectors.
By the mid- 1930s, however, the company stopped producing the type of metal mesh handbag they’re most famous for, but they were far from out of business.

There is more info about where the company headed but basically when I got to the end and saw that they really weren't making these kinds of bags anymore I was saddened.

All the more reason to collect the antique gems!

Hope you enjoyed my mini tour of the history behind Whiting and Davis bags.

I'll be back with more tales of vintage finds later in the week...and the latest on our lake house search!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

My Best Finds of the Year: Whiting & Davis Dresden Mesh Purse & More!

My best finds of the year, seriously.
But it's only April.
So I know I will find more!

There are a few favorites of mine this week.
Can you guess which ones?
As I'm typing this, one just sold already.

The pink ornaments below?

 How'd you guess?
You know me so well already!

Or how about these German and Austrian postcards highlighting
blue violets?

No it must be this antique German mesh purse.

Or a sparkling aurora borealis crystal necklace....

Pink Lustre is one of my favs to collect...

And just seeing these old Bobbsey Twins books brings back memories of
my childhood...many a summer I could be found
with a copy of the BT in my hot little hands.
My favorite cobbler shoe forms are the tiny baby or child sized forms.
There is a "pair" here! Even better!
More vintage jewelry...

This clutch purse is beautiful.
From the wonderful construction of the bag to the carved ivory handles.
A lovely art deco styled Mother of Pearl brooch

And speaking of sweet, a pretty antique china bowl for your candies
An old Charles Dickens book....Stories of Christmas Time

Vintage game pieces from BINGO and FLINCH

Rose pendant
More roses surround this lovely lustre pitcher

Who am I kidding? I think they're all great!
This antique "Dresden" mesh purse by Whiting & Davis, with the single pink rose.

Definitely my favorite this week.

Thanks for looking with me!
Check out the rest here.