Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary, that's me!

I'm now a huge believer in the well known quote
'never say never.'

Just recently HERE I told you the story of my souvenir brooch from the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. The little brass book with the royal crown on the cover and the strip of pull-out b/w photos of the Queen, Duke of Edinburgh, Westminster Abbey etc. After sharing that childhood memory and a photo of me in London wearing the brooch, now long lost, I decided to try to find a replacement online and was thrilled when a lady in England actually had one for sale in her Etsy shop. It looked similar and stated to be in great condition, and what really excited me was that it actually had Made in England stamped on the reverse, so I knew it was genuine. I took a chance and purchased it.

The brooch arrived a week ago, prettily wrapped and well padded in its envelope. On opening it I was thrilled to find it very similar to my original one, and thankfully in great condition. No torn photos in the strip, all clear and undamaged. The book itself is also in great condition with the clasp still intact and the bow pin still workable. The royal crown, Elizabeth R and 1953 are all slightly raised and legible. . . . .  .and there on the back, stamped clearly, MADE IN ENGLAND. Perfection!

I also found another photo of me taken on that special day in London with
 my little friend Jacqueline - same place, Trafalgar Square, and in this one you
 can actually see the pigeons eating out of my hand!
In my last post we discussed throwing away vintage items which should have
 been saved and treasured. I'm so glad that whomever owned this little brooch
 back in the fifties had sense enough to hang on to it. Thank you. . . . . and
 hopefully my family will thank you also in years to come! I will pin this brooch
 to the photo, with the story of my London visit, and hope it brings joy to those
 who find it.


  1. That's lovely, Mary. I just know it will look beautiful on your coat. We do love to see those stamps, don't we. Every-time I see an orphaned tea-cup with Made in England on the bottom I want to purchase it. We are digging out today and the sun is shining...finally. Have a good day, Deb

  2. I am so glad for you. I keep reading all this 'minimalist' stuff and feel that it is easy to throw out the baby with the bath water. My mother died just as my parents were due to move house, and well meaning friends 'helped' my father sort and pack and move- and they threw away a whole file of precious correspondence [including a letter from the author Enid Blyton] such things can never be replaced. To know you have another brooch is very lovely. Hang on to it!!

  3. That brooch is just gorgeous! I love how the photos pull out like a little book. I am so happy for you that you found this online. I know you will treasure it forever.

  4. That's a lovely story, Mary! I'm glad you are now able to complete the vignette of photo and brooch. I have a silk scarf commmemorating the coronation of our Queen's father and mother - passed down to me. From time to time I've thought 'why am I keeping this old thing' and then I re-think and tuck it away again.

  5. How lovely to find that. I hang o to the tiny Coronation coach that I was given at the time. I don't think anyone will want it, but it's not going out!

  6. What an awesome keepsake! And I'm so glad you found your brooch! What a small world we live in.

  7. Mary, I'm thrilled that you were able to find "your" brooch! I see now that it is much fancier than mine, but mine started a royalty collection that I try to continue today. I wonder if my progeny will appreciate it. . .
    Sue in So. Calif.

  8. How wonderful that you found one! I love seeing the pictures of you when you were young.

  9. I love your story too Mary!
    The Queens coronation was a huge event in our lives even in the far flung Antipodes!
    The little brooch is wonderful and a thrill for you finding one on EBay.
    Isn't it fun looking back on those times. I had a little collection of Royal family books that I loved but my dear mother was very good at giving away 'clutter' when I was overseas!
    I'm sure I had a coronation coach like Elizabeth's , it's long gone now!
    Love those photos of you! I had a similar coat in blue with a velvet collar and buttons!
    This post has stirred up such lovely memories.

    1. Aw, that's sad yours is long gone but my mother was the same. It's all been sold off now anyhting I might have had some fond memories of.

  10. It's so nice when things like this happen. Even if it's not the original one, you have managed to find a replacement, which in time to come someone in your family will treasure .

  11. What a lovely brooch it is Mary. I am glad you were able to find a similar one in an Etsy shop. Sweet photo's of you as a girl!

    Happy day!

    Madelief x

  12. Oh how wonderful is that?! This post just put a big old grin on my face.

  13. What an incredible find! I cannot wait to come see this next time I'm in the neighborhood! :)

  14. I am tickled you found one. Loved the picture too. Oh how I wish I could meet the Queen. Is she as loved in England as here in the States?

  15. What a very wonderful story! And great photos.

  16. you know, Mary, that brings joy to my heart too reading this account. How marvelous and incredible, really. It's like that moment so long ago came right back to you in the present in a very tangible way. Thrilling and truly lovely to see anything like this so well preserved! I wonder if any of these are ven in a museum somewhere or not? So love that.

    I did have to chuckle at this: "it actually had Made in England stamped on the reverse, so I knew it was genuine." Oh yes! Now, wouldn't you have been appalled if it said, "Mede in China" or something! Oh dear me. Too funny.

  17. What is also jsut lovely here, is how amazing time is. I can totally tell that is you in the photos even though you are jsut a girl there. I always find that amazing how people age and yet keep such distinctive features that we can recognise them decades later.

  18. I just love that little book brooch. I can see why you would want to replace it. What a treasure.


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