Gifted Program: Victorian All the Way
What do we think you should gift this season? Something Of a Kind—I mean, OBVIOUSLY. If you’re looking to double-down on the special, we’ve conjured up some stellar present pairings—our “Gifted Program,” if you will—that we’ll be serving up over the next couple weeks. (And ok, fine, if this doesn’t satiate you, we have a slew of ideas up in our Pinterest, too.) —erica
The pairing: The mad-cool Victorian Governess Cuff that Tirana Jewelry made us ($130) + Wuthering Heights, Middlemarch, Great Expectations, or any of the other Victorian-era classics that Penguin packaged up so nicely ($22)
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How Lisa Salzer Gets Down With Vintage Materials
She makes the 1860s feel not so far away.
Sustaining a jewelry line with its roots in insanely unique vintage items can’t be easy, but Lisa Salzer acts like it ain’t no thang. And girl knows how to get creative. Watch how the so-talented whiz behind Lulu Frost turns Art Deco dress clips and Victorian shoe buckles into wear-it-now magic. —carlye wisel
"These Deco Earrings used to be dress clips from the Art Deco period—around the 1920s or 1930s—and they range in size because women used to wear them on the straps of their gowns or sweaters. I love the transforming the classic into something new.”
"The Victorian Cuff started off as Victorian shoe buckles from the 1860s. We select them, curve them, and file them down. Each one is totally one of a kind. They are delicate but tough at the same time because they’re made of steel.”
"These 100 Year Necklaces are comprised of elements from the 1860s up to 1960, so they’re kind of a century of jewelry in one piece. In terms of making each one, it’s very much an intuition thing. I basically start with thousands of vintage pieces on trays around me, and I start to collage them together until it feels right. It’s a process of removing and replacing until it has the right harmony and balance of materials, texture, size, shape, and color.”
”Code Fine Jewelry is a collection of from-scratch designs that I’ve done that’s based on the font from the Plaza Hotel. I’ve heard some interesting stories from people about why they like to get certain numbers—I think people really grow attached once they think about what their own personal number is.”
"I was so inspired by these fantastic, geometric triangular vintage Art Deco pieces—so inspired, in fact, that I decided to single them out and use them as the basis for my exclusive Deco Cocktail Necklace for Of a Kind. I love the way the differing sizes of the triangles create a nice rhythm and the varied choice of chain keeps the necklaces interesting. It’s what I like to call ‘the midsize statement necklace,’ which, in my opinion, is the perfect kind—not so big and bulky that you won’t be able to wear it comfortably, but still substantial and cool enough to give you that amazing complement to any look.”
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Erica Weiners’s Maine Favorites
The Victorian finds are as impressive as the lobsters.
Though Erica Weiner’s a New Yorker through and through, she has a soft spot for Maine, where her parents now live and where she does a lot of sourcing for her jewelry line, which is full of antique trinkets (that she somehow makes very cool). “Growing up, I spent every summer going to camp there, like a good Jewish kid,” Erica explains. These are the places that fit her food- and accessory-consumption needs.
“It’s mostly Victorian stuff—mostly jewelry. But the owner is, I think, the only gay guy for miles around, so he has things like beefcake postcards, too. It’s really weird.”
(96 Court St., Auburn, 207-782-0638)
Erica outside of Elmer’s Barn in 2007. “That place is insane—but a goldmine.”
“It’s like a mile from where my parents live. It has cachet now—I think Martha Stewart discovered him, and he was told by his daughter or something that he needed to raise his prices. So now his upstairs is exorbitantly expensive, but the basement is still cheap. He also has a giant, pot-bellied stove in the middle of the barn, and in the winter he just sits there and heaves logs into it. So it’s really warm and cozy.”
(Route 17, Coopers Mills, 207-549-7671)
“The owners are Brooklyn people who moved up there like five years ago and bought this old dining car of a train. It’s Park Sloped out—in the middle of, really, nowhere—and it’s always full. They do an amazing chicken marsala from the Moosewood Restaurant cookbook, and they have fantastic desserts—delicious gingerbread, lots of pies.”
(3 Bridge St., Gardiner, 207-582-4804; a1diner.com)
Liberty Tool Company
“It’s a rural tool-and-parts barn, and it’s incredible. Also, it’s like a three-story firetrap.”
(57 Main St., Liberty, 207-589-4771)
Erica eating oysters at Red’s Eats.
“It’s a shack at the side of the road—with two-hour waits. They serve lobster rolls, steamed lobsters, fried clams, fried shrimp—simple stuff like that.”
(Main St. & Water St., Wiscasset, 207-882-6128)
“A lot of German people moved to Maine in the 1910s and 1920s. Someone opened this place called Morse’s, with sauerkraut, pickles, and German meats. It’s a roadhouse kind of space that’s half beer hall, half deli/grocery. They serve completely amazing food—some of the best German food I’ve ever had.”
(3856 Washington Rd., Waldoboro, 207-832-5569; morsessauerkraut.com)
Nobleboro Antique Exchange
“I just bought a whole lot of stuff there. There’s this lady, Miss Helen, who I didn’t meet this time but whom I have an appointment with. She’s 90 years old and a collector of Victorian antiques—I bought a lot of stuff from her booth. You tell her what you want—say, you’re looking for Civil War-era diamond solitaires—and she’ll make you a little package of what she finds and mail it to you. You keep what you like and send the rest back with a check written for what you kept.”
(104 U.S. 1, Nobleboro, 207-563-6800; nobleboroantiqueexchange.com)
Some of the specialties at Hussey’s General Store.
Hussey’s General Store
“I think it’s mostly for Mennonites, but they have everything: chain, hardware, snacks, animal feed, and, yes, wedding dresses.”
(510 Ridge Rd., Whitefield, 207-445-2511; husseysgeneralstore.com)
Check out the exclusive necklace Erica Weiner designed for Of a Kind! There are just 17 of ‘em!