Saturday, July 18, 2009

Michelle Obama's Papier Maché Brooch Unveiled

I recently did a blog post on Michelle Obama's love of vintage brooches. In this article, I mentioned the recent London trip where Michelle wore this vintage brooch purchased at Ikrams.

One thing that I really admire about Mrs. Obama is that she tends to favor young designers that are not as well known as some of the main jewelry and clothing designers. And, of course, Michelle's taste in jewelry trends to the vintage styles, so she is a favorite of mine to follow.

This lovely brooch is a 1960s vintage papier maché style. I have only seen a few styles made this way in the collections and estates that come my way. Most are in not so great condition, since the material doesn't lend itself to long term use. The brooch that Michelle wore is in pristine condition so it's a fabulous find.

I decided to see what I could find for sale online which is of the similar era to see if I could learn a little bit about the process. This proved to be slightly time consuming since many sellers spell the title paper mache (without the i in papier). After quite a few google searches, I only came up with one on Etsy, one on Ebay and one on Ruby Lane. They certainly are elusive and I'll be on the look out for them in collections I buy in future.

One thing I did discover as I was searching, which may appeal to the crafty readers of mine. There are online classes showing how to make papier maché brooches yourself! One site is called Wardrobe Refresh, and another is Cathy of California.

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