Over in Melbourne, it’s a wonderful Saturday for all, a good time for hitting the pavement and seeing if there’s anything new and glorious to buy.

It should be nearing that time of the week in your part of the world, so has anyone got any big antique hunting plans? I’ll be sure to keep everyone updated if I find any treasures!

Changes in the collecting landscape of Melbourne, Australia owe a lot to the new generation of collectors and the shifting focus from Antique Centres as museums, to multi-faceted warehouses containing junk/vintage/retro objects (who would have known that He-Man figure or M&M dispenser would be worth money?) to the antique.

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Finding decent mourning jewellery in Australia is becoming quite difficult and when one does find a nice piece, it’s usually got a few more zero’s on the end than a knowledgeable collector would like to reconcile with.

That was one of the unfortunate truths to the Ballarat Antique Fair, while there were some lovely things, I don’t mind taking the leap for something that I would be in love with, but logic and common sense remind me that I can find the same thing on eBay for a fraction of the price (sorry, dealers).

However, this bracelet stood out as one of the finer pieces of the show. I was on the lookout for brooches and rings (as usual), but what I found was what I had mostly seen last year, but with some generous mark-ups. Hailing from a Tasmanian antique dealer (quite a nice chap), I did a lap of the fair (see the other Ballarat post for that adventure) and purchased this before leaving.

This bracelet is a single weave, table-worked, four level hair bracelet. The clasp is gold and the interior is palatte-worked hair on milk-glass with wheat sheaf motifs in gold surrounding the interior hair.

As for its age, 1850-60 would be in the ballpark for this sort of piece, though similar examples exist in catalogues through to 1870. It’s in reasonably good condition for its age, the hair is still rather supple, though the milk-glass has some movement to it. No, I won’t be wearing it, I’ll simply treat it with all the love of my others. It’s unsigned, as well, with no dedication to a loved one.

All in all, I don’t recall another piece at the fair to set me on fire quite like this one, so in the end, it was a successful day!

Ballarat Antique FairThe Ballarat Antique fair is now over and those lucky enough to attend were presented with some wonderful wares of sellers from across Australia. What are my memories of this event?

Well, let’s just say I have the bruises to last a lifetime. Read on for a breakdown of the event….

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Ballarat Antique Fair

March 6, 2010

Ballarat Antique FairAre you at the Ballarat Antique Fair yet? I am and you’re missing out on a marvellous lecture by yours truly to anyone who cares to listen! What will become of it? Look forward to a future post!

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