I picked up this pin on eBay for around $6.00. It is made of base metal and rhinestone, and is probably from the 1940s. I think that it might be a comet pin because it reminds me of the first comet in this illustration from Johannes Hevelius’ Cometographia (Danzig, 1668). What do you think?
Today marks the arrival of comet Pan-STARRS in the Northern Hemisphere. I live in CA, but sadly we have too many clouds to see anything today. Fortunately, this comet is supposed to stick around for a few days so my fingers are crossed for some good viewing soon. I am wearing the comet necklace that I made today (see the main photo of this blog) as well as one of my antique comet pins:
The pin above is an example of a classic Edwardian/Victorian Halley’s Comet pin, circa 1910. It is made of rose gold and has a stone that appears to be topaz (though it might be glass “paste”). Like most antique Halley’s Comet pins, it is unsigned.
In the coming days, I will post more pictures of pins from my collection along with what I know about them. if you have any info to add, then please feel free to share it here.
Humans have been making comet jewelry for hundreds of years, and Halley’s Comet has been a particularly rich source of inspiration for jewelers from the Georgian to the Victorian eras. When I first began collecting antique comet jewelry, I lamented the fact that I will probably be too old to work with wire the next time Halley’s Comet comes around. But then, I learned about the ISON comet that is supposed to be spectacular at the the end of this year (and, hello, Pan-STARRS comet!)! To me, this was a sign that I should not let Halley’s schedule get in the way of creating my own version of the comet.
Here is my version of a comet. I crafted this necklace from recycled sterling silver wire, sterling silver chain, and natural snow quartz. Comets consist of rock and ice, hence my choice of gemstone. I am excited about this design. and have plans to expand it further. In the meantime, I will share some of my collection of vintage comet jewelry here. Stay tuned!