The Ringleaders

1960s, Chelita Secunda, Emmerton and Lambert, julie driscoll, lulu, Meriel McCooey, ossie clark, pat booth, sunday times magazine, Suzy Kendall

Suzy Kendall

When popstar Lulu announced her engagement to musician Maurice Gibb a few months ago, most newspapers published pictures of her holding hands with her fiance. Underneath were captions which stated: “Lulu shows off her sapphire and diamond ring.” But in the photos=graohs they were both wearing so many different rings it was impossible to make out which one was the engagement ring – or who, for that matter, was wearing it. Pictures like these show that there is a growing fashion for wearing masses of rings all crammed on at once. It’s a craze that has sprung up as a sort of antidote to the growing uniformity of clothes. Last winter when most people were racing around in pants, long sweaters and clumpy shoes, the only way of looking remotely original was to wear different scarves, unusual belts or jewellery. Actress Suzy Kendall (above), who has been a keen collector for some time, said that she picked up this selection while on location in Yugoslavia and in Rome, and she bought others from a shop in Chelsea called Anschel’s. The rest of the people photographed on these pages acquire their bits and piece in much the same way. This is a craze that doesn’t cost much. Avid collectors say that it wouldn’t work with real stones – they would look too flashy – and they prefer more original bits.

The Sunday Times Magazine, March 23 1969.

By Meriel McCooey. Photos by Malcolm Robertson. Scanned by Miss Peelpants.

Ossie Clark in knuckledusters

Boutique owner/model Pat Booth and Art Nouveau swan ring

Pop star Lulu without husband

Verne Lambert sells them [Lambert was one half of Chelsea Antiques Market’s Emmerton and Lambert]

Chelita Secunda, model agent, collects old enamelled versions

Chelsea girl Judy Szekley

Indian rings for painter Brunner

Julie Driscoll in market bargains

6 thoughts on “The Ringleaders

  1. Ooh these are brilliant! Especially Suzy Kendall *swoons* Had to re-read Verne Lambert’s as I had previously read it as Verity Lamnert! Doh!

  2. Ahhh the heady days of Butler and Wilson at Antiquarius. They had the first stall as you entered, a fabulous range of Victorian, Art Nouveau and Art Deco rings and jewellry. Saw Jack Palance shopping there one Saturday.

  3. What an awesome post! I adore how you transcribed the text — it’s SO illustrative for the moment in time!

    I take major inspiration from this. I love ring stacking.

  4. Bought my engagement and wedding ring from Anschel in 1975. It’s our 40th Wedding Anniversary on Sunday. Would love to track down the designer of my rings…which were a matching pair.

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