Monday, July 19, 2010

The Things We Want... But Pass On....

Came across this stupendous vintage NASA space charm bracelet. The listing said, this belonged to a NASA photographers wife, and every time there was a new rocket deployment or some such, they would get a charm.

I ooooo and ahhhh'd it and decided to pass. It sold for $152, and I simply have not been studying the vintage bracelet category long enough to feel good bidding on something I wasn't very familiar with. Vintage charm bracelets are something I don't know much about, enough to make an educated bid, at any rate.

What vintage treasures have you passed on, when your heart was telling you: "Yes yes!" and your mind was saying "Not yet"..?


  1. I can't imagine someone giving that up. That's history right there.

    She probably had all boys.

  2. Wow that is a great bracelet. I sort of passed up on the Funkiest vintage purple couch ever! I was about 18 and saw it in a thrift store for 40.00 not having any cash on me I was gonna borrow some from my Mom, then she said she would buy it for me as my b day gift. I was so excited till we got back to the store and it was gone. I still think about that darn thing YEARS later. It was the kind that one person faces one was the other the opposite.. kind of like a S couch. It was amazing. *leaves topic pouting* =p

  3. HOLY CRAP, that bracelet kicks my arse! What a wonderful theme!

    I have a couple charm bracelets that I bought and added to. So I have someone else's history mixed in with my own. Good times.

    Hiya Miss!! Hugs and love...

  4. It is a cool bracelet with unique charms, but not all of them are unique. Would you have worn the bracelet or just held on to it? My house is full of all kinds of stuff I thought I had to have.

  5. Oh yeah, still waiting to be added to your blogroll...

  6. that is an impressive bracelet and the history is amazing! Are you sure you should have passed it up?!! he he

    Oh I've regretted passing up stuff often, such is the life of someone who loves old stuff, it doesn't hang around like other stuff!

  7. Now stop making me wish I'd bought this grrrr lolol....

    I always think long and hard about most everything I get.

    And while this bracelet is really fantastic, do I want to wear NASA on my wrist?

    My heart tells me to get one that has a bit more personal meaning to me. And charms that are a bit more 'girly', perhaps.

    And I will add any and all charms my late Mom and my late brother gave me over the years (some are necklaces, and I can add it to the bracelet).

    Then I have some earrings I can add a bit of to it. If I get a jewelers soldering kit to add a jump ring...


    Ahh well, I've passed on things I later regretted, and $152 was just a wee bit much for me, for a piece of jewelry.

    I'd rather buy a chair or something big or useable for that kind of money.

    Not to mention all the repairs I need to get done in the house *groan*

  8. You are such an inspiration to my blogging! I have a post up now with my favorite vintage bracelets including my charm bracelet. Please have a peek:

  9. Wow that is so cool. And that would have been perfect for me- I run an Air&Space Museum. But you're right- $152 is nothing to sneeze at.

    Years ago, before I even moved into my first apartment, I came across a red vinyl loveseat and a set of tiered end tables and a coffee table that were made of glass block. I think the total for all 4 pieces was $75. If I had a place of my own I would have bought them- now I'm still kicking myself for not finding some room somewhere for them!

  10. I just found your blog and wanted to tell you that I LOOOOOVE IT!! I am in the middle of remodeling my kitchen and having a blast with it.

    I will never forget the 3 things that went away. I was in a thrift store with everything was 50% off. There was a not one but two great antique couches one was 100 the other 200. So lets say both were 150 due to half off. Then a kitchen counter with the flour sifter in it and all for 300. OK with half off 150. I literally jumped in the car and speed to home to get the check book. Got back they were loading the items into a truck. I even knew the person who bought it and I know they are going to take it to their store and put a ungodly price on it. UGGG!!

  11. Hi! Wow, I love this site. I found it because I'm the person who bought that charm bracelet! It arrived today, and I googled "NASA charm bracelet" just for kicks to see if any others were out there, and your blog was right up near the top of the rankings.

    I collect and sometimes re-sell (to feed my collecting!) vintage jewelry. I do feel bad about out-bidding other people. I know it's how things go, especially in this field, but I still feel badly when it happens, for whatever reason, if I think I am outbidding another amateur and not a dealer.

    Anyway, I didn't have a whole lot of time to research this before the auction ended, but I knew it was a good deal, even at that price (you will be shocked to hear.) It was clear from the photos that the bracelet itself is very high quality. Seeing it in person, that's borne out -- gold-filled and with a hallmark, safety latch and chain, etc. The design of doubled, flattened links is also very sought-after. I could remove the charms and sell each one, and the bracelet, individually, but I won't do that.

    I agree that this bracelet is someone's cherished history and memories, even if that person is now, as sadly seems, probably dead. One of the few non-NASA charms is a calendar page. June has been engraved for the month, and June 19, 1947 on the back. I would think most likely this was the owner's birthday, which would have made her about 63 on her last birthday -- not all that old -- and in her early 20s during the manned Apollo moon missions. Or maybe it's a wedding anniversary. There are no child-head charms (those are almost always found on charm bracelets belonging to mothers, so maybe she didn't have children.) There are two secretary-themed charms -- a typewriter cast in three parts including a moveable paten, and with three tiny rhinestones in the key-stroke area, and a miniature eraser, which you can see in the photograph. (Believe it or not, that little eraser charm, also hallmarked, could potentially be the most valuable, depending on its rarity and interest to collectors.) So I would think she was probably a secretarial worker.

    The other non-NASA charms are a beer stein, two southwest charms (road runner and dancer/thunderbird), horseshoe/4-leaf-clover, a bell, two little ball-and-chain charms (one hallmarked gold filled), a little cupid, two astrological charms (aquarius and I believe Gemini), and a globe. Some are sterling, etc. It's always interesting to think about the owner's travels, or whether people knew to bring her charms.

    You (other commenter) are correct that the NASA charms are not all unique. I'm pretty sure that only a couple were uniquely commemorative. One really nice copper and enamel charm stands out, as does the rocket-shaped charm, which is marked RUGIN (anyone have any idea what that refers to?), and a very complex, three-part cast orbiter-reentry capsule. The window revolves around the seated astronaut inside, and he also spins independently on an axis so that you can see his re-entry couch.

  12. Wow hiya, and thanks for your comment! I'm amazed you found my post, and were the buyer of this amazing bracelet!

    I had second thoughts, that's for sure. I knew not all the charms were NASA as well, but I am converting my office into a vintage space theme room, and was searching for vintage space items when I saw the bracelet.

    That bracelet was a difficult thing to pass up, but... I'm glad it went to someone who seems to appreciate it, even if you do resell it.

    Thanks again for stopping by! What a small world the internet can be!

  13. Oh and thank you for the insightful comment!