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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Family Jewels

We have a bride in our family this year.  

That means we -- my sister Peggy and I --
take The Lavalier out of the safe deposit box. . .
. . . we look at it, remember which family brides wore it,
remember when we wore it on our own wedding days,
and hope our latest bride will wear it, too.

 It's not the most beautiful piece of jewelry in the world, although it is so very
evocative of its Edwardian origins.  It's not terribly valuable, except in sentimental coinage.
My daughter Alida would be the fourth generation to wear it.

She's never seen it, so she'll have to look at it and decide if it goes with her dress.
Do you see that it needs repair?
It's clearer in this picture:
The cross piece under the pearl has come detached.
I will bring it to a jeweler; this is not going to be one of my D-I-Y projects!

It needs a new chain.  This gold chain is very nice, but it's modern, and too thick for the pendant.
The original chain, which was as thin and delicate as a strand of hair,
and in the same pinkish-gold as the lavalier, is no longer with it.

Neither Peggy nor I know who last wore this on her wedding day.
Our Mom would know, but it's too late to ask her.
On this warm and sunny Wednesday, I think I'll have lunch with my sister-in-law Phyllis, and then go visit Peggy, where her grandson-twins are still in residence.  And because I love you, here are two pictures of The Boys:
Mr. Calvin, amongst his toys, rocking the preppy look.
Mr. Luke, also preppy in blue, chasing Cheerios on his tray.  Love the bare piggies.
 Yes, my grand-nephews are also Family Jewels, and far more precious than gold.

As for our family lavalier, and our family bride, I won't push Alida to wear it;
she needs to make up her own mind, wear what makes her feel good, feel happy, feel like a bride.  

As I recall, Peggy and I didn't get -- or expect -- any choice in the matter.
Our Mom said, "Here's your grandmother's lavalier; put it on."  And we did. 
Ah, the good old days of parenting!  -- Cass

PS ... There are other brides who have opted not to wear the lavalier -- it's okay.
And it's not bad luck to not wear it -- there are no superstitions attached.
That we know of . . . . (cue spooky music here.) 


  1. I'm sure she will continue the tradition of wearing lavalier...I certainly would not want to be the one to break a tradition like this. Could be a bad omen for the marriage....(no pressure Alida)

  2. Chuckled at the " who's paying for the wedding " mention. ;0)

    It's really a beautiful piece of workmanship.

  3. How special. It is a beautiful piece if you ask me.....such great memories. I think it is such a wonderful thing to have this piece to be passed down for brides to wear on their wedding day. Even if it was in a different way...maybe pinned to a veil.

  4. It's beautiful :) I was to wear my great grandmother's locket on my wedding day, which held a peice of my great grandfather's hair and his picture - unfortunately, when she died, it was disbursed out amongst the family and we couldn't get it back in time :( I did, however, attach my late grandfather's anchor pendant (navy man) to my bouquet so I could take a little peice of my beloved pop-pop down the aisle with me. Family heirlooms are so special on wedding days...

  5. Oh I hope she wears it. Weddings are a time to link the generations. Besides, it is lovely.

  6. What a lovely heirloom. I have never heard of the word 'lavalier' before, but it's a pretty piece and I hope you can find an appropriate chain for it. Pamela

  7. A very special necklace and a wonderful tradition to continue! I adore your site.

    Art by Karena

    Send your friends and...Come and enter my very Fashionable Giveaway from the French Basketeer!

  8. It's a beautiful necklace. Any young bride would be tickled pink to wear it on her big day.


  9. I think it's a beautiful necklace, Cass. I doubt you will have to twist her arm!


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  11. Those questions we wish we could ask ...or wish we had asked ...

    A nice family heirloom .. as are the boy jewels!

  12. The lavalier is beautiful and so special. I have a thought for you, if the bride does not want to wear the lavalier then maybe she could wrap it around her wedding bouquet.
    Have a sweet day and hugs, Elizabeth

  13. With that pearl in it, instead of a chain that may or may not match, the bride could wear it on a satin cord to match her gown...I think it is lovely!


  14. The necklace is lovely. I guess it's down to the neckline of the dress. The boys...priceless♥

  15. What a treasure the necklace is. Beautiful.
    As are the boys!

  16. Another use for the lavalier if your daughter doesn't want to wear it would be to incorporate it in her bouquet. I have a lovely purse that I used on my wedding and it's been used by four other brides, I keep a slip of paper in the purse with the date it was used. If you could track the history of the lavalier your could keep it recorded in the box! Have a great week!


    P.S. Those babies are beautiful!

  17. Mary from "Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes" has expressed my thought on this. A piece of paper in the box with dates and the wearers name or even a little book where the brides could themselves write a few words about what it meant to them to wear it. Something that will stand the test of time and can be passed down as part of the history of the piece. It would be quite a lovely thing someday for each new bride to sit and read the book filled with all the wedding day thoughts of all the brides before her as she adds her name to the book and the history of the piece.

    The boys are adorable! Twice the work but twice the fun lol. We have twins in every generation in my family going back over a hundred years.


  18. The boys are so cute in their little vests! I loved dressing my son up in adult looking clothes when he was that age.

  19. Asked my daughter who is herself getting married in 6 weeks what she thought about the necklace. She shook her head as in "no way", but totally agreed with the idea of it being part of the bouquet. Just thought you might like to hear what a bride-to-be's honest opinion was. So, if I were you I would definitely mention the option of the bouquet.

    The boys are A-D-O-R-A-B-L-E!!!!

  20. I love the necklace, but you knew that already, Mom :) Also, my professor was wearing the exact same outfit as Luke the Monday after Easter. It was amazing.


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