Little girls dream of the day, the very first time they hang a pillow case from the back of their head and pretend to be a Princess or unless you are actually part of the royal family, the closest you will ever be to it - a Bride. This is the first thing I thought of when I heard the very iconic Northern Goldsmiths in Newcastle was having a huge £1m refurbishment to become a flagship showroom. Established in 1892 it has crowned the corner of Pilgrim Street and Blackett Street in the city centre ever since. Despite having my own engagement ring for ...wow 10yrs now and my own wedding ring for nearly 8yrs. Every time I pass this Jewellers I cant help but stop and look at all the other beautiful rings and indeed other stunning jewellery.
Iconic is the correct word, after a chat with my Grandma about the store. The beautiful clock that hangs above the shop was apparently thee place to meet your love back in the day, obviously there were no mobile phones let alone not everyone would even have a watch. Everyone knew this clock though which chimed every 15 minute and was quickly named "The Kissing Clock" after all the rendezvous of couples it has witnessed. It was also according to GG the creme de la creme of places, to get an engagement or wedding ring and indeed after picking it out of the window, it has also become a very popular place to pop the question right below "The Kissing Clock"....awwww.
I myself, used to day dream about what my Engagement ring would look like and argue with my friend Sarah that Diamonds were way better than Sapphires...this went on well into our teens too. Probably up until I met a boy. Thee boy actually. I was 15 and it was as all the fairy tales promised 'Love at first sight'. I owned a school skirt and a tennis racket. He was 19, had a job. A car. I thought he was the best thing since sliced bread.
Disney doesn't mention teenage love is more like a roller coaster ride with huge amounts of hormones and can be less fairytale, more Artic Monkeys -Mardy Bum. However if you're in for the long haul, its in the vows "For better for worse" A few years passed, somehow he managed to move into my flat and we got our fur baby Samson. Then not long after I turned 21, on a very cold, snowy Valentines day in Paris. He got down on one knee, with a view of the Eiffel Tower and produced a Platinum Solitaire Diamond ring; its truly the only time in my life I have been speechless.
Got a little company now.
Such a special moment I will never forget and lead onto Back packing round the world, 2 more moves, a wedding, living in other country's and 2 gorgeous little boys later....the rest is as they say history. So I didn't get "The Kissing Clock" but I think you will agree the boy done good.
Northern Goldsmiths are reopening this week, back to romantic business as usual. The team are currently calling for people to come forward with their Goldsmiths memorabilia from over the years – either by sharing photos on Twitter using #NorthernGoldsmithsBigDay or by emailing NorthernGoldsmiths@opr.co.uk with a photo and brief description of the item. So get in touch.