About Me

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I'm a communications specialist with a passion for vintage and I run an online vintage business called Vintage Baubles & Bits.

I consider myself a saver of beautiful items from the past and a repurposer of treasures!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Our Final Show of the Year - Holiday Swing - Dec 5th & 6th


Plan to spend your holiday shopping time with us! Our final show of the year will be the first ever Holiday Swing - put on by the fabulous folks who run Strawberry Swing (voted one of the top 35 vintage and craft shows by Buzzfeed!). 

This event will be Friday and Saturday December 5th & 6th, held in the fabulous West Bottoms as part of the monthly First Fridays activities!

Come do your gift buying local!!


Event is being held at The Foundation - 1221 Union Ave., Kansas City, MO

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide - Vintage Gifts of Heirloom Quality


Our final Holiday Gift Guide focuses on fine jewelry pieces that are so amazing they're sure to become family heirlooms.


Fine jewelry is never a bad investment! We've been adding quality gold rings to the shop and we're excited to share them with you this holiday season. 

Engagement Rings

From the traditional diamond, to the more unique sapphire or brightly colored gemstone - a vintage engagement ring is as unique as your relationship and has stood the test of time. 


Gorgeous Cocktail Rings

Already tied the knot or just looking for a gorgeous vintage ring to add to your collection? These rings are classic, stunning and simply breathtaking! 


Don't forget to see our other Holiday Gift Guides too! Under $20, Under $50 and Under $100


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide - Vintage Gift Ideas Under $100

Is your gift giving budget in the $50-$100 range? We have some stunning items that would make absolutely gorgeous presents this holiday season!


Sterling Silver Rings

One of our favorite metals is sterling silver. You'll find some absolutely stunning sterling silver rings in this price range. Many of these beauties are from the 1920s and 1930s and will rock the socks off of any lady you gift them to! 
Art Deco Necklaces

At Vintage Baubles & Bits we're suckers for Art Deco jewelry and there are some beautiful works of art in the shop from this era. Delicate, intricate and heirloom-quality, these are crowd pleasers!
Our final Holiday Gift Guide will be out next week and it's sure to make you ohh and ahhh!!! Be sure to take a peek at our other guides: Under $20 and Under $50 for even more gift ideas!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide - Vintage Gift Ideas Under $50

In part two of our Holiday Gift guide we share some gorgeous gift ideas in the $20-$50 range. These beauties are sure to please!



Costume Necklaces

Nothing is more versatile than a necklace! Make an outfit go from ho-hum to fabulous with one of our lovely pendant necklaces.  Or try one of our classic choker style selections. We've got colors from sleek to bold and styles from the petite and delicate to the big and eye catching! 

Pendants:
Chokers:


Purses, Handbags and Clutches

Nothing completes an outfit quite like a handbag! From the simple clutch that's perfect for your Holiday party to fun 60s standouts - vintage purses are chic and classic!
Rings

Both men and women can rock vintage rings. From basic metals to sterling silver, you'll find many selections under $50 in the shop that are sure to please. 
Up next is our under $100 gift guide that will highlight gift ideas in the $50-$100 range. If you haven't seen it yet, be sure to take a peek at our Under $20 Gift Guide too!


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide - Vintage Gift Ideas Under $20

It's that time of year! The holidays are fast approaching and whether you celebrate Hanukah, Christmas or Kwanza - vintage is a great gift idea for anyone on you list!

I'll be posting a series of gift ideas from Vintage Baubles & Bits that fall within price ranges for any budget - providing you with tons of options that are sure to bring smiles to those you love!


Here is my $20 and under gift guide:

Brooches

Almost every brooch in the shop is in the under $20 range and make wonderful gifts!

Here are just a few ways you can utilize a vintage brooch:

1. Put it as the bow on your holiday gift wrapping
2. Provide coordinating ribbons so your gift recipient can make their own necklaces
3. Create a custom necklace with two necklaces and a brooch (see ideas here)
4. Attach a brooch to a head band or hair elastics for an elegant touch
5. Give a brooch with a scarf as a lovely combination present

See other fabulous ways to wear brooches in our 10-part series on brooches.




Earrings

The shop is filled with earring selections all under $20. From 80s fun neon colors, to elegant rhinestones, we have something in every style you can imagine. If you love clip and screwback earrings we have a lot to choose from! They make great gifts for little girls, friends and loved ones without pierced ears and for folks who just love vintage style.











Ties

What man doesn't need a large selections of awesome ties? Most of the ties in the shop are $8-15, including some of our killer Mad Men style silk ties! You'll find a wide variety of styles, colors and prints all at great deals!






Stay tuned for the next edition of the Holiday Guide where we'll focus on gift ideas between $20-$50.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

For the Guys - Swank, A History


If you’re a collector of men’s vintage jewelry and accessories then you’ve more than likely have a few (or many!) Swank pieces in your possession. Swank began creating men’s and women’s costume jewelry in 1897, when it went by the name of Attleboro Manufacturing Company, named after it’s location in Attleboro, Mass. The company was started by Samuel Stone and Maurice Baer.

The company began making men’s pieces starting in 1908, but they didn’t decide to focus only on men’s pieces until shortly after World War I. During the war the company created dog tags for the U.S. military and it was this shift in manufacturing that led the company to specialize in men’s jewelry.

The most notable pieces developed by Swank are cufflinks.  The first line of cufflinks created by Swank were called Kum-a-Part, for their unique snap closure. Cufflinks started to become popular again in the 1920s when manufacturers started to develop pairs of cufflinks that were easy to insert and remove. Swank took advantage of these manufacturing changes and became a powerhouse in the cufflink market. During the 1960s when wearing cufflinks was at its peak in men’s fashion Swank was producing 12 million pairs a year. You can find Swank cufflinks in every shape, size and style imaginable!

After the company had success with their Kum-a-Part line and experienced a huge manufacturing increase, they changed their name, officially becoming Swank Products, Inc. in 1936. In 1941 they had a third company change and shorted the name to just Swank, Inc.

Starting in the 1950s the brand began to acquire other companies and styles of manufacturing, expanding into leather goods and other men’s accessories. Making them a leader in men’s fashion and style.

In the 1980s the brand had a change of heart and began offering women’s jewelry again, mostly under the label Anne Klein. This foray back into women’s costume jewelry was short lived and once again the company does not make women’s jewelry, making Swank’s women’s pieces a little more collectible due to the relative rarity.

The company still operates their men’s line today and also creates private labels for designers such as Claiborne, Guess, Geoffrey Beene, Kenneth Cole, Nautica and Tommy Hilfiger.  In 2012 they were purchased by Randa Accessories and continue to produce affordable, fashionable men’s jewelry and accessories.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Growing the Business

If you’ve been a fan of the shop for a while you’ve probably noticed some changes in the types of items I carry now from what was in the shop when I started selling on Etsy three years ago. It’s been  
The first item I ever sold on Etsy
a huge leap, but as I’ve gained some traction on Etsy and at shows, I’ve decided to expand what I carry to begin to include more precious metals and gemstones. I’ve been slowly building a collection of vintage and antique gold and sterling silver engagement, wedding and cocktail rings, as well as more art deco era pieces to bring to you.

Gold and diamond vintage engagement ring
While I’m holding true to the brand identity I set up for the shop – being a reasonably priced, mid-range vintage seller that had affordable items for every budget – I’ve taken that identity and grown it to be the same style of business for more high-end pieces as well. Most of the gold and sterling items you’ll see in the shop follow this same model – they’re wonderfully beautiful and unique pieces, priced to be affordable for what they are. You’ll find 10k gold rings in price points from $100-300 and the most expensive piece in the shop, a gorgeous 14k gold diamond engagement ring, is still under $500.

Art Deco Czech glass earrings
In addition to these offerings, I’ve also been diligently adding to the Art Deco era pieces in my collection. This is a personal favorite era of mine and quality, stunning pieces from this time period get me all excited and I’m thrilled to be able to share some of that excitement with you!

I’ll always carry items in every price point; so don’t be worried that you won’t be able to afford things from the shop – more than 70 percent of our items on Etsy are still under $50. As I continue to expand the business due to wonderful folks like yourselves, I’ll use this blog forum to keep you informed and share explanations for the changes you see.

Mandy Heth
Owner, Vintage Baubles & Bits

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Where You'll Find Me Next - Wine, Chocolate and Romance

Who can pass up on wine, chocolate and romance? Well if this sounds up your alley get on over to the KC RenFest on September 27th and 28th to get your fill! Be sure to visit the vendor market place and stop in and say hi to us.

For this show I curate a selection of vintage items that fit the Victorian, Edwardian and Renaissance styles, including gloves, purses, costume and fine jewelry!


Monday, September 8, 2014

Where You'll Find Me Next - Chick Events

Coming soon! If you're in the KC area be sure to come out to this brand new show! The show coordinators have done a great job marketing and promoting the show and I'm excited to be a part of what I think will be a fantastic weekend!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Where You'll Find Me Next - Vintage & Made Fair September Edition



Iowa friends, I had so much fun that I'm coming back again! See me Sept. 6th and 7th in West Des Moines!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

For the Guys: Keep Your Pants Up!

Suspenders are an excellent way to make sure you don’t accidently moon someone very important! To American’s, the suspender is a set of fabric, elastic or leather straps, with button or clips at the ends used to hold up trousers. Outside of the US, the word suspender has a much broader scope and is often used to refer to items we call garter belts today, the term simply means, any garment used to hold up pants or stockings.

The modern suspender was developed in 1820 by Albert Thurston as a solution to a fashion issue where pants became cut to high for belts to be practical. The first U.S. patent for suspenders came about in 1871 and belonged to Samuel Clemens, more famously known as author Mark Twain.

Suspenders remained popular until the 1920s, but went out of fashion in the 30s because they were seen as “underwear”. Since then suspenders have resurged in fashion from time to time, but they’ve never again out-paced the belt in the popularity race.


Check out the collection of suspenders in our men’s section!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Stunning Sterling Silver

 I’ve always been a fan of silver jewelry and quality sterling silver is elegant and timeless. From the handformed artistic beauty of Native American jewelry to the stunning, intricate details of a sterling art deco piece, there is much to be admired about sterling silver jewelry.
 
First – what makes an item sterling versus just silver? It’s the metal content. Like many metals pure silver, like pure gold or pure copper, can be pliable and to soft to make jewelry with. To counter the metal’s natural qualities it is often blended with other metals to create stronger, more durable pieces. To be classified as sterling, the metal must contain 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metal, often copper.

In jewelry pieces sterling silver is often marked 925 or sterling to signify the metal content. Looking for these marks is a good way to ensure that you’re getting a more quality metal that is likely to hold up better with wear and use.

Sterling, as a metal alloy, was developed in Europe and can be traced back to at least the 12th century in the form of coins in the area now known as northern Germany. The popularity of sterling silver grew in Colonial America when American silversmiths began using the metal standard in all the pieces they created.

As trade increased between colonist and Native Americans, many tribes began using silver in the making of their jewelry. This process started in the early 1800s and by the 1850s many Navajo, Zuni and Hopi tribes had adopted silverwork into their jewelry. Today Southwestern jewelry and sterling silver go hand-in-hand.

Discover stunning sterling silver selections in the shop!



Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Where You'll Find Me Next - Huge Sale at Bitterman's Eye Candy

So this is the kind of news I never love sharing, but after a year and a half of trying to give it a go, the Bitterman's have decided to close down the Eye Candy shop. There will be big discounts in my booth and many of the other vendors will be joining in the sale as well.


I had decided at the beginning of the month that this would be my last month as a vendor and had marked down my items 25% off (booth code #24MH) before learning that the shop would be closing permanently at the beginning of September.

You'll have two discount tiers for my items - from now until August 15th everything is 25% off. Then starting on Saturday, August 16th the entire store goes on sale at 50% off. I'll keep my items at 50% off until the end of the month - so be sure to go check it out and get some wonderful deals before we pack everything up!

Hours of Operation - 11-4pm Thursday-Sunday


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Where to Find Me Next - Strawberry Swing August 3rd

Come out to Kansas City for a great event! This is the third year for the Strawberry Swing and it's bound to be a good time. Discover more about each vendor on the show's site and prepare to come early, as the first 100 visitors will get a swag bag full of goodies - including these sticky cork boards and cute flower clips with a discount code and our business card!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Where Have I Been?

So I realize I've been pretty absent from the blog lately and I wanted to take a moment to explain why.

I'm a pretty private person despite the amount of social media you see from me around Vintage Baubles & Bits and so even most of my family has no idea of what's been going on in my life for the past two months... so here's the big reveal.

At the end of April I lost my day job, the one that actually pays the bills. As much as I would like the vintage job to be my only job, I'm not quite ready to give up a steady paycheck and take the chance on a fluctuating income just yet.

I was lucky, I got a month of severance and I had some time to hit the job market before things became really tight. You'd think that given all that extra free time I'd have spent it writing oodles of blogs right?! Well I actually didn't achieve any of that type of work, but what I did do was grow my inventory, expand into fine jewelry for the shop and photograph more than 100 new items for you all.

I also raised my Etsy shop inventory from 400 items to 500 items.

But I also took some time for myself. I went on vacation, yes vacation while unemployed. I'd had it scheduled and the money was spent, so why deny myself that gift?

I wasn't slacking on the job search either, in fact within the first two weeks of being unemployed I had four solid leads and at the end of my third week of unemployment I had a job offer. After accepting the position I finally started telling people about losing my position.

It's been two weeks since I started at my new job and I'm going through that phase of trying to learn the ropes, get invested in my new client's business and re-establish a routine. For awhile I'm going to be really busy with the day job and I'm probably going to be a terrible slacker when it comes to keeping up with my blog, but hopefully you'll all forgive me and stick with me as I get into my new groove!

I have tons of lovely new things to show you and stories from thrifting experiences to share. So check back now and then and I promise to be better and not go nearly two months between chats from here on out.

Hugs and tons of vintage love!

Mandy

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Item of the Week - April 22

https://www.etsy.com/listing/181269254/vintage-1970s-egyptian-pendant-gold?ref=shop_home_active_13

Vintage 1970s Egyptian Pendant / Gold Necklace / Egyptian Revival Necklace / Egyptian Pharaoh Pendant

This gorgeous goldtone Pharaoh pendant necklace from the 1970s. It has a huge chain and great details in the pendant. Part of the Egyptian Revival scene, very funky and cool!


| MEASUREMENTS |

Pendant: 2" x 1 3/4"
Length: 30"

| DETAILS |

Era: 1970s
Style: Egyptian Revival
Material: Metal
Colors: Gold
Condition: Excellent

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Item of the Week - April 15th

https://www.etsy.com/listing/180637660/vintage-1950s-lipstick-holder-and-mirror?ref=shop_home_active_2

Vintage 1950s Lipstick Holder and Mirror Compact from Japan / Lipstick Case / Lipstick Holder

This cute piece holds your lipstick and provides you with a mirror so you're always ready for a touch up! It's marked Japan on the side with the hinge. The mirror is the exact size of the compact. You'll see some wear on the mirror due to its age, but the enamel, paint and metal is in great shape.

| MEASUREMENTS |

Length: 2"
Width: 1"

| DETAILS |

Era: 1950s
Style: Victorian
Material: Metal, glass, paint, enamel
Colors: Gold, pink, blue, white, yellow, green
Condition: Excellent