Now you can shop Tenenbaum Jewelers’ full collection of estate and fine jewelry from home at tenenbaumjewelers.com
In New York, you visit Tiffany’s, perhaps while peering wistfully through the window, pastry in hand. But in Houston, you make the pilgrimage to Tenenbaum, the estate and fine jewelry house with roots stretching back to 1975 when the late Louis Tenenbaum opened his shop inside the iconic Warwick Hotel.
Located today in a sleek, natural light-filled location on Westheimer Road, Tenenbaum Jewelers acquires its estate jewelry piece by piece, day by day, and has a reputation for fair and honest pricing that brings the most exquisite finds right to its front door, often stashed in unexpected containers.
“It’s amazing what arrives in grocery bags, cookie tins, and whatever else people keep their jewelry in,” Director of Development Christina Stith says of the acquisition process. Local jewelry aficionados drop in every week between errands to walk the store and glimpse what’s new, beautiful, and rare among the cases.
FLOWER Editor’s Pick: “I love how the blackened silver contrasts the shiny diamonds and gold in these bloom-shaped earrings. The richness of the finish makes them more versatile and wearable—from blue jeans to ball gowns.” — Margaret Zainey Roux, Contributing Editor. Buccellati ‘Daisy’ earrings from the Blossom Collection ($740).
Fulfilling the vision of current owner Tony Bradfield, who learned the jewelry business as an apprentice under Louis’s brother in San Francisco, Tenenbaum has expanded its offerings to reach a broader audience both in price and selection. Along with antique and vintage pieces ranging from the Georgian and Art Deco periods to the relatively contemporary designs of the 1980s and ’90s, the store now carries fine jewelry from highly collectible designers such as Buccellati in Milan, Seaman Schepps in New York, and Girard-Perregaux, a manufacturer of much sought-after Swiss timepieces that has been in business since 1791.
At local charity events, the Tenenbaum piece on the fundraising docket is always the item to watch, which happens often. Whether the fundraiser benefits the performing arts community, a museum, or a hospital, Tony is an avid believer in building relationships through community.
FLOWER Editor’s Pick: “We need to bring back the brooch. The gold citrine and blue topaz bee is one bug I definitely would NOT shoo off my shoulder.” — Margaret Zainey Roux, Contributing Editor. Estate 18K Gold Citrine and Blue Topaz Bee Pin, $2,499
Still, for most of us, this veritable candy shop of jewels has remained a destination on our travel bucket list and not an everyday experience. That is until now. This November, Tenenbaum unveiled its new website powered by Shopify, with over 7,500 items available for purchase online.
“We took the opportunity with the shutdown and quarantine and a slower few months to invest in our website, and to make sure that it is a full representation of what you would find in the store,” says Christina. “That allows us to better serve a client that isn’t in our backyard, but might be in Atlanta or Charleston or Wisconsin and looking for that unique piece of estate jewelry.”
Just in time for holiday giving and wish-list making, the news has us humming “O Tenenbaum.” (Are we sure the original song title is “O Tannenbaum”?)
FLOWER Editor’s Pick: “This floral ring is simply chic and will bring a cool vibe to a tailored look. Wear it with a crisp white button down and slim pants. It also doubles as a conversation starter!” — Alice Welsh Doyle, Editorial Director. Vintage 1970s Neiman Marcus French 18k Gold Coral Dome Ring with Flowers and Diamonds, $3,650
The Flower Editors Shop Tenenbaum
Six members of Flower magazine’s editorial team took a virtual shopping trip to Tenenbaum’s new online storefront. Peruse our unique finds that reflect our very different personalities.
Click the arrows (or swipe if on a mobile device) to see more
FLOWER Editor's Pick: "While I admire the detailing of cameos, I've never owned one, but I’ve been wanting to add one to my jewelry box as of late (something about the sentimental nature appeals to me during these unpredictable times). This lapis version may be classified as Victorian Revival but the all-blue cameo has a distinctly modern edge that appeals to me. I would wear it to dress up a plain black dress or sweater or pair it with one of my vintage kimonos."— Alice Welsh Doyle, Editorial Director. Victorian Revival 14k Gold Carved Lapis Cameo Necklace with Elongated Lapis Beads, circa 1950, $1,750
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “These earrings are stunning! There is something magical about pairing the classic glamour of Art Deco with the bold green of emeralds. They need to be under my tree, tied up with a bow for … me!” — Amanda Smith Fowler, Style Editor. Art Deco Platinum Emerald and Diamond Drop Earrings, circa 1930, $14,850
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “Even though this fabulous cuff is a showstopper, to me, it also reads simplicity when it comes to building an outfit. I'd pair this with a black dress and the highest heels I could find in my closet (after all, that bracelet's got attitude, so you've got to channel the vibe!). And voila—dressed!” — Kirk Reed Forrester, Associate Editor. Vintage 1988 Chanel Poured Glass and Rhinestone Fashion Bracelet, $4,980
FLOWER Editor's Pick: "I have been wanting a 'go big or go home' cocktail ring for the longest, but some are too fussy for me. This Retro emerald-cut citrine ring with diamonds matches my aesthetic perfectly with its masculine/feminine vibe. I would obviously wear it in the evening, but I could see myself making a daytime statement with this ring along with a cashmere sweater, slim-cut pants, and ballet flats." — Alice Welsh Doyle, Editorial Director. Retro 1940s 18k Gold Emerald-Cut Citrine Cocktail Ring with Diamonds, circa 1940, $3,950
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “I’m having a major Chinoiserie moment, and it doesn't get any better than diamond-encrusted pagodas!” — Margaret Zainey Roux, Contributing Editor. Art Deco Platinum and 18k Gold Diamond Earrings with Pagoda Motif, circa 1930, $4,650
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “I find cameos so beautifully old-fashioned. I’d love to hang a collection on a tabletop Christmas tree in the entry, frame a grouping for my dressing room, or even pin one on a linen velvet pillow in the living room.” — Karen Carroll, Editor at Large. Assorted 19th-century carved shell cameo brooches, $475 – $2,950
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “I love a wide Greek key tape trim on a pillow or the leading edge of a drape, so the vintage Greek key statement ring is golden.” — Margaret Zainey Roux, Contributing Editor. Vintage 1990s David Webb 18k Gold Greek Key Style Ring, $9,900
FLOWER Editor's Pick: "This piece brings back happy memories of my late aunt who collected antique butterfly brooches. The vibrant enamel colors and abstract, fanciful design, which reminds me a bit of iris petals arranged into the shape of a butterfly, also speaks to my personal style." — Terri Robertson, Digital Media Manager. Art Deco Silver Enamel Butterfly Brooch, circa 1930, $395
FLOWER Editor's (Sister's) Picks: "My sister and I grew up admiring jewelry in antique shops on the weekends, and now we 'keep up' virtually by texting and tagging each other on pretty finds. So I asked her to share her favorites from Tenenbaum's site, and she sent me a trio of gorgeous rings, including a circa 1910 showstopper ('Diamond goals'), a 1940s cabochon emerald surrounded by old mine-cut diamonds ('Birthstone find!'), and a dainty orange blossom-patterned band ('I love vintage wedding bands. This one is my size and is dated 1926. So sweet!' she says.)" — Terri Robertson, Digital Media Manager. Edwardian Platinum Diamond Cluster Ring, $9,950; 18k White Gold Orange Blossom Band with Millegrain, $550; and Retro Platinum Cabochon Emerald Ring with Diamonds, $2,890
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “I love these because they offer a bit of spunk and sparkle but also versatility, perfect for everyday wear or a dressy evening out complemented with a stronger, chunky bracelet or statement necklace.” — Kirk Reed Forrester, Associate Editor. 18k Gold Diamond Flower Stud Earrings, $1,390
FLOWER Editor's Pick: “Whether a family crest, monogram, or coat of arms, I have always admired the history and function of signet rings. These pieces connect the past with a personality when gifting, and are très chic for both men and women.” — Amanda Smith Fowler, Style Editor. Estate 18k Gold Coat of Arms Signet Ring, $2,250
This article is sponsored by Tenenbaum Jewelers. Explore the online shop at tenenbaumjewelers.com
By Terri Robertson