Joan Crawford’s jewelry collection

Most of the Joan Crawford’s jewelry collection was auctioned right after her death. Although other part had already gone before she left us, Joan Crawford kept her most loved pieces (not the most valuable though). This collection is mostly from the decades 30, 40 and 50 (20th century) when the style was daring and the trend was to wear big pieces with huge ornaments.

Among al her pieces let me highlight the following:

  • A wonderful set of jewelry formed by a necklace, two twin bracelets, earrings and a ring, all by Raymond C Yard, one of the most acclaimed jeweller in the States in the time.
  • One of Crawford’s favourite ones: a set in aquamarine and diamonds signed by the French house Boucheron (Verger Freres). Joan bought it in 1935 and since then she wore it in many occasions both, for the screen and her personal life too. After this set was acquired by Andy Warhol (for his “Collecion of Jewelry and Watches”) it finally ended up in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, in the exhibition “Hollywood Glamour Fashion and Jewerly from Silver Screeen”


  • Alfred Steel, Pepsi’s CEO, was the husband who gave Joan most of the jewelry. One of these pieces was a tiny brooch in gold with rubies and bottle-shaped diamonds that she received as a wedding gift. Years after, this piece was auctioned for $5000. Other spectacular piece she was given was a wrist watch in platinum and diamonds, by Ruser. The design was quite daring for the time decorated with closter-shaped diamonds and a bracelet in similar stones. The jewel had this inscription in it: “To my love, Xmas 1958, Alfred”.
  • Impressive is also the set of brooches she acquired from the famous jewelry designer Fulco di Verdura. She used to wear them in her lapels to improve her look. Years after she started wearing them close to a diamond necklace she received, since the piece itself wasn’t enough sparkling.
  • By the end of the 50’s she added an amazing pair of earrings in diamonds to her collection. The design was also a closter in baguette, with diamond cut like markasites, each of them holding a little drop in diamond too.


  • Joan Crawford was so in love with the sapphires that she was known as “Joan Blue”. One of her favourite pieces was a set of bracelets with three starred sapphires (up to 70 carats each). She also had an engagement ring in the same form and stones and a superb emerald-cut 72 carats sapphire.

Her carisma, feline eyes and her ability to play dramatic roles made her one of the biggest stars in Hollywood.  She deserves to be part of our biggest jewelry collectionists.










With “H” for “Hebilla” (Buckle)

Every belt needs a piece to be closed and tight to the wrist. In the antiquity it was very common to see these jewels in silver decorated with semiprecious stones or pearls.

Buckles are formed by a movable part with the shape of a spike to fit the few holes in the fabric or leather part. That way you can enlarge or shrink the belt to your needs.

In jewelry, it’s a piece to embellish and enrich coats and gowns for parties and ceremonies.

Although nowadays it’s more frequent find belts made in cheaper materials, we love the chance we have to use vintage buckles in modern belts. This way, we’ll be beautifying the accessory with an exclusive and probably unique piece.



The Herculan ruins inspire Ruhamah Smith’s wedding dress

Ruahmah Smith from Worcester got married with James David Jr in September 1801, in Massachusetts.

In her simple wedding dress can be seen traditional details from the time. The skirt is a little tidied up in the back. The edge of the bodice draws the shoulders backwards and push the breast onwards. Although the piece seems to be light and comfortable, the fact is that it forced an uncomfortable posture. The gown is embellished with a beautiful brunch-shaped embroidery.

By mid 18th century, the Discovery of the Roman ruins in Herculano started a period of interest for classicism.The concern for the perfect beauty, a Greek and Roman old idea, inspired the rejection of the over decorated things. The fashion was then stark geometrical shapes. Actually the dresses were similar to Greek columns. The high waist pushed up the breast. The favourite fabrics were white cotton and linen, because of their simplicity and the similarity to the marble sculptures found in the ancient ruins.


The last years of the century came marked by the French Revolution, which influenced the fashion of the time. The perfectly organized dresses worn by the aristocracy were banished. Instead a fashion style based on classic dresses that let the body be revealed was born.

About Ruhama and James we only know a very few more things: they had two children, James and Rhama. Their descendants prospered and stayed in the area.

Ruhama and James’ granddaughter Ada M Davis was married near Worcester too in 1874.



Edith Piaf, the strength of a sparrow from Paris

Under the nickname of “Piaf” – “sparrow” in French – due to her weak appearance, Edith Giovanna Gassion was the most important French singer in the past century.

She was born in 1915 within a broken home. She was grown by her grandmother, who was a brothel owner, after she was abandoned by her mother when she was still a little girl. This sad childhood, when she had a temporary blindness too, became into an identity symbol for the rest of her life. Life seemed to be determined to treat her badly.

When she still was a teenager, while she was singing with her stepsister in the streets of Paris, she happened to get pregnant. However, her daughter died after two years because of a meningitis. Sadly, Piaf couldn’t give birth anymore, what meant a great tragedy to her.


In 1935 her luck changed when she was discovered by Louis Leplée, a manager who regented the cabaret in the Champs Elysees. He got impressed by her voice and offered her to act in his place. He also gave her the nickname of Piaf, under which she was famous later.

Life started to get better for Piaf, that singer you might have seen with her eternal black dresses, but tragedy crossed her way again. Leplée was murdered in unknown circumstances and so her career was truncated. Only someone with the talent and strength of Piaf could overcome these many tragedies. From then onwards she survived singing in little places in the Paris of the IIWW. When the war was over, better years came.

She turned to be the muse of artists and intellectuals. It was her golden epoque. Her lyrics and actings excited everyone. She started singing in the most prestigious scenerios in Europe and America. Part of the money she earned she gave it to help other young singers who wanted to have a chance in this world.


Love, however, wasn’t as generous as fame with her. She had many short-time lovers. Some of them became famous as well, like Yves Montand or Charles Aznavour. Who was considered the love of her life, the boxer Marcel Cerdan, died in a plane crash in 1949. She then sunk into depression that would mean the beginning of her decadence.

Despite this, Edith Piaf kept singing. A few year later some hits came like La vie en rose and her critically acclaimed Non, je ne regrette rien. She also took part in movies and theatrical productions.

The “Piaf of Paris”, with a weaker health because of a cáncer and with a huge addiction to morphine, had to stop her actings to recover. But she always managed to fly again.

Her last strength was to get married in 1962, just one year before she died, with her young hairdresser.

Her wonderful voice, her exceptional personality and her complex and tormented life were so fascinating that in 2007 her story was taken to the big screen. La vie en rose was stared by Marion Cotillard, who won an Oscar for this performance.


Texto @Esther Ginés

Jane Goodall, a life devoted to primates protection

Focusing your life in a passion is not easy and just a few make it a success, like the British Jane Goodall (London 1934) did. She was one of the most acclaimed scientifics and a emblematic leading because of the work she did to protect primates.

She became a Dr. in the Cambridge University and after that, she got over 40 Honorary degrees awarded by the best Universities in the world. She also was awarded with a hundred of international rewards.


Her childish and sweet face with the white hair in a ponytail is as well-known as the fluffy toy she used to be photographied with. She always took it to her speeches. Her life was extremely bounded to these primates that she loved since she was a child.

When she was slightly over 20 she travelled to Kenya to perfect her studies with a prestigous anthropologist. That was her first move in her successful professional career that includes about 20 books, articles, documentaries and a pioneer investigation over the field about the wild primates life in Tanzania. She was developing this observation for almost 50 years.

Thanks to her good eye to detail and her empathy for these animals, nowadays we know much more about their fascinating behaviour rutines and all we share with them. Her studies in Africa were so relevant that meant a revolution in Biology.


Besides trying to protect primates, the British naturalist has always supported a sustainable existence and the respect for all species in the Earth.

When in the 60’s she already was a guide and a model for primate experts, she created the institute with her name, a global non profitable organization to investigate, spread and protect not only the primates and their universe, but also the rest of the creatures in Earth.

When she’s asked for her trust in humanity, she uses to reply with scepticism. She’s truly disappointed by humanity actually although she always hopes the new generations will change the world.


Goodall keeps working even today, when she’s around 80 and as involved in the primates protection as always. In the documentary about her life and work you’ll realize that passion and energy are two of the most important features of hers.

From her 70 years-long experience protecting Nature we’ll always remember this consideration: “If we’re the smartest and clevest beings in Earth, how is that we are destroying the Planet?

Artículo escrito por @Esther Ginés






Chaplin’s vintage jewelry

It’s said Paulette Goddard’s passion with jewelry started in the early 30’s, right after she got secretly married with Charles Chaplin. Then it became usual for her to arrive to the dressing room with a little pouch plenty of jewels.

If I had to highlight one of the pieces she collected, I think I’d choose the two diamond necklaces. The most expensive one however is a jewel from the 40’s worn by the actress during her role at the movie Kitty. The piece had an impressive diamond in the middle that might have been part of her engagement ring.


But with no doubt my favourite piece is the necklace from the 19th century. She wore it in many fests and the most famous parties of the time, both in a form of pendant or set in a tiara. In the picture below these lines you’ll see her wearing it in both forms.

After the frustration she felt when she didn’t get the role of Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With The Wind, Chaplin gave her a golden bracelet and cabochons made out of emeralds from the jeweller Trabert&Hoeffer Inc. It’s a stunning group of flashy flowers that appears in many of the photos she was taken. The bracelet was combined with earrings with the same cabochons in emeralds and diamonds, similar to the design of the flowers. The flowery style was in fashion in the US by the time, and her bracelet and earrings are supposed to be inspired in a Van Cleef&Arpels’ brooch owned by the Duchess of Windsor. A similar bracelet though was found among the Mary Pickford’s collection.


Other distinguished piece in Goddard’s collection was a brooch with rubies with the form of a lips designed by the artista Salvador Dali exclusively for her

In 1990 (April and October) most of her collection was auctioned. In both occasions the pieces put out to tender were mainly from the 40’s. The most notorious jewels were these ones:

  • The bracelet and earrings from Trabert&Hoeffer
  • A colorfull and charming pair of earrings with the fom of the golden flower, yellow and blue sapphires and rubies, by Cleef&Arpels, with a combining hairpins and a ring.
  • Also from Van Cleef&Arpels were a pair of earrings made with egg-formed diamonds, surrounded by carved diamonds.
  • A brooch of diamonds with the form of a snowflake.
  • A beautiful brooch in carved coral by Cartier.
  • The two amazing necklaces we’ve been talking about.


Paulette Goddard’s jewelry collection was in line with her exquisite style, a woman not only beautiful but very smart. So perfect that when many men tried to lavish her with flowers, she responded: “I don’t accept flowers, I don’t accept any perishable”.



Virginia Woolf: The art of writing that only lost against illness

The big screen brought to us a few years ago the image of one more woman ahead of her time: the British Virginia Woolf (played by Nicole Kidman). She was a novelist, essay writer, editor, an active feminist and one of the most representative personalities in London in the beginning of the 20th century. Nowadays, she is considered among the best and most innovative writers of that time.

virginia woolf- vintage by lopez linares5

Born within a well educated family, she was in constant touch with the cultural environment. “A woman should have money and own a room if she means to write fiction”, she said, because her life wasn’t easy – in spite of the fact that her family was wealthy – The life of the writer of Orlando (her biography) was troubled with mental illness. Her parent’s death (specially her father’s) was the beginning of several mental breakdowns and a depression that lead her to commit suicide years after.


Virginia Woolf always suffered from bipolar disorder, but the severe moral in the time stopped her from talking about these episodes in her autobiographies. However, she was strong enough to beat the illness for a while only with her writing. Her husband, Leonardo Woolf also was always a big support. He was an economist and writer, member of the well-knkown group Bloomsbury. They got married whe she was 30 and they always had a huge affinity. They both together launched a publishing house that published, among others, Sigmund Freud or T.S. Eliot’s biggest hits.

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In 1941, with Europe in the middle of a war, Virginia Woolf threw herself to the river Ouse. In her emotional suicide note she showed once more time her loyalty to her husband with these words: “You have given me the greatest possible happiness. You have been in every way all that anyone could be. I don’t think two people could have been happier till this terrible disease came. I can’t fight any longer (…) If anybody could have saved me it would have been you. Everything has gone from me but the certainty of your goodness. I can’t go on spoiling your life any longer. I don’t think two people could have been happier than we have been”

Despite her important literary work and her being in the cultural life of the time, after her death Virginia Woolf’s writing dissapeared, until the feminist movement recovered it during the 60’s. It was then when her work revived to become into one of the English biggest novelists. She was terribly engaged wiht her time and other people who, like her, loved the writing. Virginia Woolf was a model of personal and professional development and she passed on us a magnificent work of fiction writing and essays.







“Givenchy, the history of a genious”

This is something I was looking forward to this November, a visit to the first retrospective about the French fashion designer Hubert from Givenchy, a leyend in the history of fashion.

This is the first Givenchy’s exhibition in Spain, in the Thyssen Museum, and it’s also the first time this museum shows fashion. The show is comissioned by Givenchy himself and it’s a walk through the history of this great genious along the second half of the 20th century, since the first store was opened in 1952 in Paris.


A selection of almost 100 pieces coming from several museums and private collections from around the world, many of them still unpublished. They share the room with exquisite paintings from the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection.

I had the priviledge of pay a visit to the show with Maria de Cuenca and a distinguish group of art lovers. Maria is a tourist guide and expert at Art and History, so the walk through the collection was even more entertaining thanks to her explanations and comments.


Among the pieces we enjoyed are a few designs from the high society along the 20th century. Iconic women like Jackqueline Kennedy, the Windsor duchess, Caroline of Monaco or even her muse and friend Audrey Hepburn. The master was Audrey’s designer in most of her most important movies, such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s. There it was the black dress I’ve dreamt of so many times…


This dress has a very interesting background. I’ve read in many specialized pages some doubts that expert had regarding this dress: the fact that the dress that appears in the beginning of the movie didn’t have the cut in the skirt. This is even more obvious in the scenes where Audrey walks towards Tiffany. She moves very graciously but in short steps so it’s evident the dress is pretty tight. However the dress that appears in most of the promotions let Audrey shows the left leg.


Is this dress the one Givenchy designed for Audrey’s movie? Or maybe it’s an adapted design that Edith Head, Paramount Pictures Manager Designer did in the very last minute? Is it possible that the Givenchy’s model was considered too provocative and they decided to make it more demure?

I’m determined to find out more about this mysterious. If I get the correct answer, you’ll be the first ones to know.

In the meantime, if you have the chance, don’t miss this show, specially if you are a fashion art lover.






Bibliography and Timetable

@Museo Thyssen

Photography @María Vintage Photography

Helmut Newton, the polemic photographer

Here I am again, one month more, working on my project with El Objetivo Magico (The Magic Lens)

Sometimes it’s overwhelming to face how quickly the months pass… Only one month to go to the end of this productive photographic period of my life.

This month the protagonist is Helmut Newton, our master to replicate. And I’ve had again the help of my dearest friend Monica Giannini as a model. Believe me, if it wasn’t for her this challenge wouldn’t have been the same.

Helmut Newton probably is the photographer who made the erotic photograph glamorous. I’ve read he was called the creator of the ”Chic porno”, and I really think these two words define his perfect style. He is the top representative of the “vouyerism” style (applied to professional photography, of course)

The jump to the fame came when he was 50 already. He had started a few collaborations with Vogue Australia that lead him to Paris to work for the French Vogue.

In 1976 he published his polemic book White Women, where he tried to picture the life of the prostitutes who used to live in the street Saint-Denis. All in his images evoque provocation and sexuality, mixed with a cocktail of glamour and a pinch of violence. It’s been very difficult for me to choose the images to copy and replicate, pictures I felt comfortable with. To be honest, I find his work too much provocative and even violent.

Manolo Blahnik said about Newton’s work: “The Newton’s feminine aesthetic was unique. He was a men who knew how to photograph women looking like women”.

This is the summary of my work this month. Once again, I can’t thank enough to Monica for her help and it’s very special for me to appear with her in one of the photos.

Hope you enjoy our work…

helmut newton-proyecto fotografico-vintage by lopez linares

helmut newton-proyecto fotografico-vintage by lopez linares2

helmut newton-proyecto fotografico-vintage by lopez linares5


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helmut newton-proyecto fotografico-vintage by lopez linares3


Marie Curie: Shining in a world for men

She was born in Poland within a very humble family. However it was France the country that crossed her way to make her have a life worth being study, not only because of the science but of the sacrifice and bravery Marie Curie showed during her complicated life.

Born in 1867, she was explorer in so many different fields that it would be impossible to name them all. That was the glory of this woman, the first to obtain not one but two Nobel prizes; the first woman to be graduated in Science in La Soborna, the first woman who had a professorship and being buried thanks to her own achievements in the Mausoleum for Illustred Men in Paris.


A fascinating and wonderful person who fought to get her own path in a time when women were not allowed to have it. She lived in a society where intellectual and public responsabilities belonged to men and only men. However that wasn’t an issue: She fought to show the world her value with such patience that she seemed to know she was going to be successful some day.

Marya Skłodowska, Marie Curie, beyond the austere and cold look was a passionate both for science and her husband Pierre Curie.

She met him when she was 27, after getting the bacherlor’s degree at Physics as the first in the promotion and she was already being called Marie. She found her half in him, a partner on sicence and love who she had two daughters with. Their career together however was tragically cut short when a horse carriage run over him and killed him after 11 years of marriage.


Both were scientists but also humanists. Two persons totally convinced of the social situation around. Marie fell into a deep grief although she knew how to live beyond the pain and knew how to reinvent herself.

She educated her daughters so well that Irène, the older, won a Nobel Prize at Chemistry although she ended up dying young (59 years old) due to all the radiations she got during her professional life.

The same way Marie Curie suffered from a full life dedicated to physics. She knew she would pay the price and for decades she felt a huge fatigue. When she was 60 she was already a very weak woman.


In despite of being an expert in the field, neither she nor her husband saw the danger they faced every day with the experiments. A danger that caused the death to Marie Curie in 1934, when she was 67 years old.

She left for posterity her discoveries, awards and over all her headstrong spirit. The spirit of a woman who knew how to go further in a society that wasn’t ready nor willing to let her be. A woman who never was afraid of limits. A woman who deserves being remembered both for her contribution to science but also for her bravery.

Artículo escrito por @Esther Ginés