Vintage jewelry is kind of like a teenager. Not a child, but not yet an adult. Vintage jewelry is not new, but it is not yet antique. Usually, vintage jewelry is between 20 and 80 years old.
When jewelry is less than 20 years old, we usually call it ‘Estate Jewelry’.
A lot happened in the world of jewelry during the 20th century. Therefore, vintage jewelry of our time runs the gamut from Art Deco, through the drama of Retro, Modernism, Pop, Psychedelic and Kinetic jewelry. A lot happened during the 20th century.
A lot of famous designers made their names during the period that we regard as vintage. Many artists made their way from Europe to America and here found fame and fortune as jewelry makers to the stars. At the time Hollywood stars were more like royalty than royalty. Part of their contracts was to look good. Often actresses actually wore their own, personal jewelry in movies. They were sometimes given allowances for this.
Here are a few names of famous designers for the crazily wealthy social aristocrats of the day: Fulco Verdura, Jean Schlumberger (who worked for Tiffany & Co and whose work is still being produced today), Raymond Yard, Seaman Scheppes, Harry Winston and David Webb. The list goes on and on. They all worked in the USA. In France names like Raymond Templier, Jean Fouquet, Sandoz Despres, Coco Channel and Suzanne Belperron are a few that stand out.
After World War II, jewelry got bigger and bolder. It often took the form of miniature sculptures. Fun was in the air and we see little humorous gestures like bits dangling from rings, asymmetrical brooches and large gold frills. The new world of science and space-travel are also reflected in jewelry with comets and satellites.
A number of famous fine artists put their hands to creating jewelry. George Braque and Pablo Picasso amongst them. Today, there are people who collect work by these artists.
The hippy, pop and psychedelic era was not that long ago. Besides plaiting rings of straw and grass, there was some fun yet serious fine jewelry made during this period. Some of it moves – kinetic jewelry, which I love; some of it is sculptural and some of it plays tricks with your eyes. Today, all of this has become highly sought after by people remembering their carefree youth in a less complicated world.
Good jewelry from the vintage era has long been collected and increasingly pieces from the latter part of the period are hunted and prized. We specialize in looking for unusual and interesting pieces of jewelry including jewelry made during the vintage period. If you are interested in starting a collection of fabulous vintage jewels or finding that one perfect piece that takes you back a few decades, you have found the perfect landing spot.