Every single person I know who is into vintage in one way or another is a lover of vintage china. It’s one of those things that transcends every different era we may be obsessed with. And nothing says vintage tea shop like odd pieces of pretty floral crockery coming together to create a unique tea setting. Of course, I’m no different and actually have a small collection of my own 1930s cream china pieces.
So, when I was approached by Dutch jewellery maker, Bregje Weterings, about possibly featuring her vintage china jewellery on the blog, I was instantly intrigued. I immediately went and had a look at her Etsy shop, Bregjes Design. What I came across was something that totally resonated with me. Bregje wasn’t just using vintage china but rather broken unwanted pieces that would normally just be thrown away and she had turned them into items of real beauty. I absolutely love this idea as I hate throwing anything away and would rather it be reworked into something else.
This makes every piece of jewellery on offer totally unique and it took me a several good looks through Bregjes Design’s catalogue to decide what to go for. There’s so many different options from necklaces, brooches, rings and sets of matching pieces all in different designs. The classic blue on white and pink on white floral designs dominate the range but less common ones, such as striped, ditsy multi-colour florals and raised self-colour pattern are also available.
When my chosen piece arrived it was lovingly wrapped in the cutest little bag with the Bregjes Design stamp on it and a matching gift card. When I carefully opened the bag I was met with a sprinkling of gold glitter. It was such a sweet surprise and fits in perfectly with the whole brand look. It did make me giggle too!
In the end I chose a beautiful necklace that has a long narrow piece of blue floral china as the pendant. I was attracted to it for both for the colour and the design as it features nearly an entire flower, rather than just a random piece of pattern. The top edge of it was clearly the edge of a saucer or plate and every time I wear it I wonder who owned that piece of crockery over the years. Was it part of a well loved set that was used constantly or something that was kept for best? And when did it part with the rest of the set or was it the very last piece left?
The collection, which Bregje lovingly calls Granny’s China, combines two of her long standing passions, vintage crockery and statement jewellery. She has a large collection of her own china but when one of her beloved cups or plates accidentally slips on to the floor she knows it won’t be wasted. Pretty floral patterns and gold edges are her favourite designs and they lend themselves perfectly to the ultra feminine pieces.
When the broken shards are too small to use Bregje uses a Japanese technique called kintsugi to join two pieces together. This technique works by repairing broken ceramics with a special lacquer mixed with gold, silver, or platinum so the joins are visible. The Japanese believe that this technique treats the breakage and repair as part of the object’s history, rather than wanting to disguise what might have happened. I just love this idea!
Each broken shard goes through a process of being sanded, milled and glazed to allow it be turned into a wearable item. You won’t find any sharp edges that may cut you but the piece is still left with plenty of unique character. Jewellery findings are then added, such as a sterling silver ring either in a set size or an adjustable option. The necklace I chose has a long dainty silver ball chain which can be easily adjusted at home to be made shorter. I kept mine the length it came as to fit in more with my early 20th Century style.
I teamed the necklace here with a 1920s style dress that I bought from Hobbs brand N.W.3 a few years ago. It’s such a beautiful dress created in a pale green cotton lawn that features embroidery, pin tucks and fagotting throughout, which gives it a real handmade vintage feel. I think the necklace goes perfectly with it, creating that all important vertical line to draw your attention away from the shapeless dress.
I’m very grateful to Bregjes Design for allowing me to buy this beautiful piece of continuing history at a vastly reduced price in exchange for this review. I absolutely adore this necklace and wear it a lot. It always attracts comments or questions and I’m so glad that this small piece of china didn’t end up in landfill.