Another Grandmother Project con’t

This is the second in a series of posts about the items I inherited from my paternal grandmother. She didn’t leave much behind, so I cherish the items I received, but at the same time I am trying to figure out just what to do with them.


This is a beautiful beaded handbag, but unfortunately, it’s falling apart. The other side is in even worse condition. I would love to get it repaired but have no idea where to do that. Any ideas? I love the style of this. My mom has a close friend who had an old heirloom handbag preserved in a display box and I would love to do something like that if it could be repaired.

pin cushion

Next up is the pin cushion. My aunt says this used to be on Gram’s dresser, but I am not sure I really remember seeing it there.  My aunt says that the hat pins belonged to Gram’s mother Rose, my great-grandmother. Rose was quite a woman, from the stories I’ve heard. She took in foster children before there was a real foster child system, and despite her family’s lack of wealth. Because of this, there is an “aunt” who was raised by her who is not a biological relative, but was always considered a sister to my Gram and her two biological sisters. I love the pin in the center with the rhinestones, even though many are missing. I would love to get that repaired as well. Stick pins were in fashion in the late 70s – maybe they’ll make a comeback and I could wear it as one!

There were some costume jewelry pins my mom chose for me to have.  The two that are identical are actually a belt buckle I think. I like the little one at the bottom the most. It’s pretty and delicate and would be something you could just pin on a collar for a little extra fun. I know it’s not exactly in style at the moment, but it appeals to me.

My mom also gave me an assortment of rings. Some I passed along to my daughter. I kept three for myself which you can see on my finger (which looks incredibly old and wrinkly in this photo for some reason!). The top one is missing some stones (rhinestones I presume) and I would love to get it repaired and sized to fit me. It’s a cute little ring.

The second one is missing the stone (I assume the stones were sold or reset at some point). I LOVE this setting. What is really, really strange is that it is very similar to the ring I received from my other grandmother. You can read that post here. My other grandmother’s ring was her engagement ring. The stone was reset for an anniversary. My mom gave me that ring and had an aquamarine stone set in it for me. This ring from

Comparison of two rings

Gram is very similar. It might have been the style of the times – however they weren’t the same age. Gai married in the 30s and Gram married in the 40s (she was a WWII bride), so I’m not sure what to think.

I’ve included a photo of the two similar rings together. In this photo, you can see that the ring from Gram has a blue stone on the side (it’s missing on the other side).

The third ring is also missing a stone, but again I am in love with the ring. The setting is quite high – it sticks out quite far and I love the delicate detailing on the ring itself. I really want to get all three of these rings repaired and reset so I could wear them.

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12 Responses to Another Grandmother Project con’t

  1. Beautiful, beautiful rings! My husband’s grandmother recently passed along some jewelry to my daughter and she just loves it–gives you such a sense of connection.

  2. Jesaka Long says:

    I love how you’re sharing these items from your grandmother. It’s really amazing that you have a few special things of hers. While I’m not sure if this your style, I wonder if you could do something with a shadow box to showcase the hat pins? They are really pretty and you just don’t see things like that today. Thank you for sharing The Grandmother Project!

  3. Alene says:

    You are so lucky. My mother had Alzheimers at a very early age and “cleaned house” one day and threw out all of her old costume jewelry, my gold charm bracelet from childhood, and everything else that might have meant something to me. I’m sure she looked at it in her addled mind and thought – this old thing! So, be very thankful you have some lovely things with memories. Although, if I had a choice, I’d rather have my mother. (Your pics made me think – sorry!)

  4. The pin cushion is adorable and the purse is exquisite. Maybe just mount that and frame it.

  5. marthaandme says:

    Oh, Alene, that is so sad and I’m so sorry! I am very grateful to have a few things at least.

  6. marthaandme says:

    That’s a good idea. It’s hard to know what to do with it all- on top of the many things I got from my other grandmother that I have not yet completely dealt with.

  7. marthaandme says:

    Yes, it really does. I wear the synthetic blue star sapphire from my other grandmother almost every day and when I look at it I think about how I used to see it on her finger and it really makes me close to her.

  8. Very cool stuff. That ring you have without the stone looks similar to one my mother left me. It was an engagement ring from a former boyfriend before my dad!

  9. marthaandme says:

    That’s an interesting piece of family history for sure!

  10. Alexandra says:

    I love the purse, too. Feels like watching the Antiques Roadshow. Wish things were not made in China, shoddily, the way they are these days. What will we have to leave to our grand-daughters???

  11. sheryl says:

    All so special. I totally understand why you are so attached to all of these things. They connect you to the person you loved. I have a few of my grandmother’s things, too, including a bag similar to the one in your photo. It just sits in my closet…I don’t quite know what to do with it. But now, the wheels are turning. Maybe a shadowbox display, with some lace as a background, would be a pretty way to showcase it?

  12. marthaandme says:

    Yes, I think that would be lovely. It is hard to know what to do with these things.

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