Sara Coventry Vintage

11/10/2016 24 0 0

Sara Coventry Jewellery Company

The company was founded in 1949 by Charles Stuart, who decided to name his costume jewellery firm after his granddaughter, Sarah Coventry. He did not follow the Trifari, Coro or Haskell way of using a strong in-house designer to provide the designs. Instead, Stuart bought designs from freelancers. He enlisted the help of companies such as Elster and DeLizza , whose  brand was called Juliana to create its costrume necklaces, chokers, brooches, earrings, and bracelets which were an attractive option to buyers  looking for a affordable alternative to gemstone jewellery.

Costume Necklaces, Earrings, and Bracelets and Brooches sold at House Parties

Unlike other jewellery firms at the time, Sarah Coventry did not concentrate on acquiring key space in department stores, or selling its wares to Hollywood movie stars in order to sell stock.  Instead Stuart’s approach was somewhat more grassroots, using house parties (simliar to  Avon and Tupperware), to get people talking about his jewellery range. He also gave his costume jewellery away for free to game show contestants and at beauty comepetitions. Word about his jewellery spread using these marketing methods and this strategy made Sarah Coventry one of the most popular jewellery companies of the mid-20th century. 

1960's and 1970's Vintage Sara Coventry Jewellery valued by Collectors

These days its vintage costume jewellery pieces from the 1960's and ’70s including vintage necklaces, vintage brooches, vintage earrings and vintage bracelets are particularly prized by collectors.

Sara Coventry Jewellery Catalogue, Bracelets, Brooches, Earrings, and Necklaces

Even though the Coventry brand did not have  its own designer, many of the company’s signature pieces share particular characteristics. Sarah Coventry costume jewellery including necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and brooches tends to feature marquise-cut rhinestone and cabochons rather than dense grids or long rows of smaller sparklers. Base metals were usually silver-tone or gold tone , often serving as openwork or delicate filigree backgrounds for a few particular stones placed symmetrically upon them. And, at its heart, Coventry jewellery was  fun, often ringed with sparkling rhinestone-bead or enameled-metal edging.Occasionaly Sara Coventry pieces even incorporated art masterpieces such as the Mona Lisa into their jewellery designs.

For much of its quite short history (the company  was sold in 1984, and enjoyed only a brief comeback  from 2002 to 2003), Sarah Coventry promoted its jewellery as being “for the woman who dares to be different,” even though the names it gave most of its designs were plain and simple. 

Sara Coventry Jewellery Designs

Sometimes the names of designs were more evocative, such as Acapulco, whose star-like and vaguely circular shapes were defined by their green-and-red cabochons, chosen, presumably, to reflect he colors of the Mexican flag. Maharani was simply just meant to sound exotic—its faux turquoise stones were matched with emerald rhinestones, which were set like leaves on the line’s brooch and accompanying earrings.

And then there were names that indicate the company  had simply run out of ideas. For no specific reason, a four-piece jewellery set that included a diamond-shaped brooch, with matching  earrings and a stickpin, was named Remembrance, while Bittersweet had  faux coral drops attached to gold-tone leaves. Touch of Elegance displayed green rhinestones like small pieces of fruit secured by filigree settings. 

Strong colourful pieces are among the most desired and collectible. Blue Lagoon jewellery pieces from the 1960s had aurora borealis rhinestones on them, alongside smaller purple and blue ones. The asymmetrical Mosaic comprised solid-color and dappled cabochons on a gold-tone setting. Strawberry Ice strawberry shapes and silver tone for its pins and earrings. And the gold-tone necklace-and-earring jewellery  set called Golden Avocado reflected on the popular kitchen color of the 1970's.