MARY GAGE ARTS & CRAFTS HAND WROUGHT STERLING STONE SET

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.....very rare......

Any work by artisan Mary Gage is SO hard to find any more, so I am very pleased to be able to offer this wonderful pin and earring set to you. Completely hand made out of sterling silver, the set consists of a matching pin and earrings, with the pin being just slightly larger than the earrings. The set features crimp bezel set rock crystal stones that are surrounded by Gage's well known lily pad motif and just studded with hand made sterling bead balls. This is just simply stunning when worn.

The pin closes on the back with a safety clasp and the earrings have clasp backs (which may be replacements, it's hard to tell). A beautiful set and a rare, rare maker!

The Maine Antiques Digest published an obituary on Ms. Gage (who died at 94) as follows:

"Mary G. Gage died March 13 [1993] in Portland, Maine on the eve of the 'Great Blizzard.' She was born August 16, 1898 in St.Mary's (Township) Indiana. During her life, she had been a medical technician, a silversmith, a breeder of French poodles, a used-book seller, and an antiques dealer. After serving as a nurse at the time of World War I, she moved to Chicago w she studied and worked at St. Luke's hospital. In the early 20's she fled a brief marriage and spent three years traveling around the world; two of those years were spent in China, including a year in Peking. She developed then a life-long interest in things Chinese, ranging from literature to design to erotica to food. The balance of her trip was spent in India, Africa (including a trip on the Blue Train to Lake Victoria), and Argentina."

"On return to the States, she learned silversmithing and set up in business in New York. She owned a row house in Greenwich Village and had a workshop in SoHo w she was a regular at Fanelli's Bar. Her jewelry was sold in uptown shops and at exhibits throughout the country. In the 1940's, she lived in an old mill on the river in Westport, Connecticut, raising poodles. Following that, she moved to Hartland, Vermont, w she salvaged an elegant old brick house, which, after she left, became the Hartland Antique Center."

"In the '50's, Mary Gage moved to Maine, spending a number of years in Waldoboro, working as a silversmith, antiques and used-book dealer, and poodle breeder. At some point she also had a cat that did well in commercials. The citizens of Waldoboro didn't much appreciate Mary Gage (she was different, and her place did reek of dogs). In turn, she loathed Waldoboro, which she referred to as 'that pusspocket.' Her last years were spent in a Portland apartment w she continued to make jewelry and occasionally bought and sold antiques."

"Throughout her life, she had a series of interesting friends and acquaintances: from Henry Ford when she was a girl in school, to gum magnate Phillip Wrigley, whom she met in India, to Isamu Noguchi in New York to James Thurber in Connecticut, and Maxfield Parrish in Vermont. In recent years, her jewelry has enjoyed increased interest as The Arts and Crafts movement has come to the fore. Auction houses have begun to feature her pieces and collectors have actively been seeking her work."

For more information about Ms. Gage and some examples of very beautiful pieces, see Paul Somerson's website at Chicagosilver.

Hallmark : Mary Gage Sterling

Size: Pin Diameter: 1 5/16"; Earrings Diameter: 1 1/8"

Condition: Excellent vintage

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The majority of my items are vintage, ranging from 25 to 80 years old. These items have been lovingly used and worn and may show age-related wear or patina. I will always note in the Condi...

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