British Post War Jewellery Designers - Illustrated Guide
  Interested in British modernist jewellery design? Check out our illustrated guide to British Post War Jewellery Designers including  designer history , concepts, and beautiful examples of work.   1) ANTHONY HAWKSLEY Anthony Hawksley (1921-91) studied at the Maidstone School of Art, before later training as a silversmith at the Royal College of Art, London. He became know for his modern crisp designs and was inspired by the work of Georg Jensen, the renowned Danish silverware designer.  In 1951 he exhibited his work at the Festi..
The Ilustrated Guide to Finnish Silver Jewellery Designers
  Interested in Finnish silver jewellery? Check out our illustrated guide to the top jewellery designers from Finland   1) Bjorn Weckstrom/Lapponia  Bjorn Weckstrom (1935 -)  was a Finnish jewellery designer and sculptor. He originally wanted to train as a sculptor , however family opposition resulted in a change in direction. He studied at Helsinki's Goldsmith school graduating  in 1956. At first his work reflected the clean Scandinavian design ethos , however by the 1960's, Weckstrom had developed his own style which was more sculptural than tradi..
  EARLY LIFE Georg Jensen was born in Raadvad, Denmark in 1866. The town comprised a small cluster of houses situated in lovely countryside around a knife factory north of Copenhagen, His father worked as a grinder at the factory and his mother was a housemaid.  Jensen worked alongside his father at the factory from an early age. He did not have much schooling. His family recognised his talent for making things and encouraged his work. When Georg was 14 the family moved to Copenhagen so that he could train as  an apprentice goldsmith. This involved long hours and har..
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The Ultimate Guide to Danish Silver Jewellery Designers
  Interested in Danish silver jewellery? Check out our illustrated guide to the top jewellery designers from Denmark   1) ANTON MICHELSEN  Anton Michelsen was born in 1809 in Vopenhagen, Denmark. His family had been metal smiths for generations. He undertook a goldsmiths apprenticeship in 1939 before moving to Copenhagen  where he continued his training at J B Dalhoff's workshop. He was also a student at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. In 1836 he travelled abroad and worked at some of the foremost gold smithies in Paris, France and Germany. He ..
  Interested in Norwegian silver jewellery? Check out our illustrated guide to the top jewellery designers from Norway   1) DAVID- ANDERSEN  The David Andersen company is a fourth generation family owned business. David Andersen (1843 -1901) was the son of a Norwegian tenant farmer. At 19 he became an apprentice to a Silversmith in Oslo where he studied enamelling technique. These were incorporated into designs made for English firms in London. During 1876, Andersen opened his own goldsmith workshop in Christiania (Oslo.) He became one of Norway's most r..
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  What is Costume Jewellery? The phrase costume jewellery” was first used in the 1920s, however jewellery and ornamentation made out of non-precious materials have been worn since ancient times. While it is sometimes called fake or "fashion" jewellery, it often incorporates workmanship and materials on a par with, or even better than fine jewellery. The 20th century resulted in a sea change as to how jewellery was perceived and used. Before then,  women wore jewellery made of precious and semi-precious stones and metals as a way of flaunting  the wea..
DIFFERENT TYPES AND COLOURS OF MOONSTONE  Moonstone is the opalescent variety of orthoclase. Traditionally thought to be a good luck stone and linked to romantic passion, it was often offered as a gift between lovers. Moonstone can be transparent with a stong blue hue on the surface, or it can be milky with the appearance of inner light . It can have a striking cats eye or star effect.The hue is the result of the light reflecting off alternating layers of albite and orthoclase feldspar. The thin albite layers produce the desirable blue tone and the thick ort..
  All about the Amethyst Gemstone    Amethyst is known to be a purple variety of the mineral quartz and is often used to make beautiful amethyst jewellery including necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings. The name amethyst  comes from the Ancient Greek where it meant “not intoxicated”. This stemmed from the belief that the stone would protect the wearer from drunkenness. The amethyst is a semi precious stone and is one of several forms of quartz.   Colours of Amethyst and Where it is Found in the World   Amethyst occurs in ..
The Ultimate Guide to European Costume Jewellery Brands
  Interested in collecting vintage and antique jewellery? Check out our illustrated guide to the top European costume jewellery brands to look out for..   1) CHRISTIAN DIOR   Christian Dior  was a very prominent and influential designer of the 1950's. His fashion designs were accessorised with opulent feminine jewellery, including asymmetrical crystal necklaces, animal pins and tremblers specially commissioned for each collection. At first he created jewellery for specific clients such as Bette Davis and Marilyn Monroe, however jewellery designs wer..
The Complete Guide to Bracelet Styles
The Complete  Guide to Vintage and Antique Bracelet Styles.  Check out our illustrated
guide to help you identify the different type of bracelets.
The Complete Guide to Necklace Styles
What is a Festoon, Riviere, Sautoir, or Lavalier necklace? Check out our illustrated guide to help you identify the different types of necklaces.   1) LAVALIER NECKLACE    A lavalier is a chain type necklace that ends in one large size pendant or tassel. Sometimes there may be additional smaller pendants dangling from the main stone. In the 1600's the lavalier got its name from Louise de La Vallière , a mistress of Louis XIV who often wore them.The lavalier was popular from 1900 to 1930 as the delicacy of the lavalier was a perfect match to&nbs..
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What is Scapolite
WHAT IS  SCAPOLITE? Scapolite is fairly unknown to jewellery makers,  despite it having good design  potential. It can be used as a transparent faceted stone or as a transulcent cabochon and is becoming more widely available. SCAPOLITE DERIVED FROM GREEK FOR  "ROD" OR "STONE" The name scapolite derives from the Greek words for "stone" and "rod" which in simple terms describes the shape of the scapolite crystals. Scapolite is also called "wernerite", named after the German geologist A.G.Werner. SOURCES OF SCAPOLITE Scapolite can be found in Brazil..
Hans Hansen Jewellery
Hans Hansen - Denmark   Hans Hansen (1884-1940),was the founder of the Hans Hansen  firm which became known for superb Scandinavian modernist jewellery design. He was born in 1884, and started his workshop in 1906 on the Jutland Peninsula in Denmark. He made mostly holloware until he was succesful enough to take a chance with starting a line of jewellery. Karl Gustav - Jewellery Design  In 1932 he asked his son Karl Gustav (1914 - 2002 ) who was an apprenctice in  his workshop to design a line for him called "Future". Karl designed..
Bent Gabrielsen Pedersen Jewellery
Bent Gabrielsen Pedersen   Bent Gabrielsen Pedersen (born in 1928) studied at the Danish College of Jewellery and Silversmithing which produced all the major artists in  Denmark. He was one of the first graduates from the college in 1953. After he left college he was hired by  Hans Hansen  where he took over the jewellery design department from Karl Gustav in 1953. He designed smooth silver "boomerang" type bracelets and earrings and "atomic" jewellery with enamel for Hans Hansen in the fifties.    L to Right -&nbs..
  If you are a fan of vintage then now is a great time to look for quality pieces as the market is buoyant, and with a little bit of background research you can  find some great vintage necklaces, earrings, bracelets, or  brooches to add to your collection. There are pieces  to suit every style  and taste, and  you can find a wide variety of choice in terms of  value and significance. With so many buying options available, it’s a great idea to know what to look for when buying vintage , and, if possible, understand a bit of the history behind ea..
Elsa Schiaparelli Jewellery
Elsa Schiaparelli Elsa Schiaparelli was born in Rome in 1890 to wealthy family. She was  rebellious from an early age and once attended a ball wrapped simply in a length of fabric that unwound as the night went on, bringing shame and  scandal to her family. She married William de Wendt and had a daughter, however the marriage did not last leaving her a  single mother. She had a passion for  the arts and fashion, and determined to  suceed independently, she moved to Paris in the 1920's. Here she met top designer Paul  Poiret who introduced ..
Lisner Jewellery
Lisner Lisner jewellery has only become  popular with collectors over recent years, as the focus has been on  bigger names. However the company's skilfull an attractive designs together with relatively low prices have led to a  resurgence in their popularity with collectors. Lisner Company Beginnings The company was established in New York  in 1904 where it made its own good quality  unsigned jewellery and also distributed  pieces for others. In the 1920's it focused on well made jewellery marked "Lanvin's Violet". Before the outbreak of the sec..
The Bauhaus and Naum Slutzky Jewellery
The Influence of the Bauhaus   At the  Bauhaus a German design school in existence from 1919 onwards, the application of modernist principles to smaller scale design took place. Under the management of it director Walter Gropius it's stong influence on the art and design world continued even after the school was shut by the Nazi's in 1933. The Bauhaus ethos of "form follows function" was applied to all products that emanated from this infuential school of avant gard students and teachers. Ergonomic Lines   Bauhaus design required to have a ..
Marcel Boucher Jewellery
Marcel Boucher Marcel Boucher was born in 1898. He was a French jewellery designer who produced some of the most flamboyant work in the 1940's. He trained at Cartier in Paris before moving to New York int he 1920's. In 1937 he set up his own business, Marcel Boucher et Cie. His business partner Arthur Halberstadt worked as the front of house  person in the shop, while Boucher designed the jewellery. The Cartier Influence The influence of Cartier can be seen in the firm's designs of Rococo bows and swags, however the traditional French style has been exaggerated to ob..
Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube Jewellery
Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube   Born in 1927 Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube studied at the National College of Craft and Design in Stockholm, before opening her studio  in 1951.During a trip to Paris in 1956, she was interested by the early artifacts on display at the Musee de L'Homme. She then designed jewellery with Egyptian amulets.  Torun decided to remain and  work in France. She married an African-American painter Walter Coleman, and though him became friends with the expatriate Black community. She designed rutilated quartz silver necklaces and..
What are Double Clips in Jewellery?
  Cartier The idea for the clip pin apparently came to Louis Cartier, the french jeweller while watching a peasant women hanging up her washing with wooden clothes pegs. This then evolved into a variet of clip types inlcuding the double  clip - this was two fur clips that could be worn seperately or worn together attached to a frame. Coro and the Duette clip Cartier patented this idea  in 1927 and it soon became very popular across Europe .and America due to its versatility. The most successful example was Coro's "'Duette" which was patented by the ..
Kupittaan Kulta Jewellery
Elis Kauppi One of the most important figures in Finish jewellery design Elis Kauppi’s vision of a new jewellery style inspired a generation of designers and launched Finland onto the international jewellery design scene. In 1945, in Turku, Finland at the age of 24 , Kauppi started his renowned jewellery workshop named Kupittaan Kulta. He was part of a young group of makers which would forever change the face of jewellery design. Kauppi's drive to innovate originated from the difficult circumstances of the war and a desire to break out of the  usual standar..
Wiwen Nilsson and Swedish Silver Jewellery Design
Sweden and Traditionalist Design Conservative tastes prevailed in Sweden in the first two decades of the 20th century. Innovation was not welcomed. Georg Jensen was admired but from a distance. The Art Nouveau and Art Deco influences from Europe were not explored until Wiwen Nilsson came onto the scene. The traditionalist design ethos in Sweden was evident at the Paris Expo in 1900, however by 1925 and the time of the Arts Decoratifs Expo the beginning of modern silver design in Sweden was evident Wiwen Nilsson Wiwen  Nilsson was the catalyst for modern silver desi..
What is Peridot
WHAT IS  PERIDOT? Peridot only comes in greens, from pale yellow green, through intense bottle green to vibrant apple green. The best material  comes from Pakistan near to the Afghan border. The large fine deposit of peridot found there have a beautiful deep colour and sell for high prices. Peridot is termed an idiochromatic gemstone. This means that the colour comes from the chemical composition of the stone and not from impurities within which normally provide gemstone colour STRUCTURE OF PERIDOT Peridot is generally transparent but can contain a wide..
Types of Beryl
TYPES OF BERYL The beryl species has a great mix of gemstones which are all viewed as precious gems. They include the following: EMERALD - The colour of emerald varies  according to its source and location in the world.The most prized colour is a strong slightly blueish - green.Colombian emeralds are pure green with a slight hint of blue.They are dichroic which means that the colour will vary depending on the position from which you look at it. Brazilian emeralds are slightly lighter in colour and contain more yellow than Columbian stones. They sometimes..
Types of Chalcedony
TYPES OF CHALCEDONY BLUE CHALCEDONY - This is a very attractive  stone with different hues ranging from lilac to periwinkle blue to lavender. The great increase in the popularity of blue chalcedony over  recent years has pushed its price up and good quality strong blue material can be  moderately expensive. CARNELIAN - Carnelian has been a popular stone for many years. The colours range from a pure and strong intense orange-red, to softer orange-browns and reds. Top quality material is semi - transparent with a strong colour that appears to glow. The col..
What is Tourmaline?
WHAT IS TOURMALINE? Tourmaline was first introduced to the Western world when the Dutch beganto import tourmalines from Sri Lanka.It appeals to jewellery designers due to it's versatility and different colours which include pastels, intense neons,and unique bi - and tri-colours.The demand for the most sought after coloursmeans that the price for these colours has almost tripled in recent years. STRUCTURE OF TOURMALINE Members of the tourmaline family have the same crystal structure, however, depending on what impurities they contain, different colours ..
Types of Tourmaline
TYPES OF TOURMALINE INDICOLITE - Indicolite covers all shades of blue tourmaline from blue- green turquoise colours to the strong blue of a sapphire. A lot of blue tourmaline is dark and inky. This is not popular with buyers so as a result much of blue tourmaine is heated to lighten it. RUBELITE - Rubelite is one of the most valuable and desired in the toumaline family. The translation of rubelite is "red" and real rubelite shoud be a hot pink to red colour with a blue to violet tone. There should be no yellow or brown tones. The value of rubelite has increased ..
Beryl Gemstones
  About Beryl Gemstones One of the most glamorous gems in the beryl species is emerald. In addition to emerald the species also includes aquamarine, morganite and helidor.They are all precious gems and are very popular with jewellery designers.The main feature that determines value of these gems is the intensity of the colour Sources of Beryl Emerald - Best sources are found in Columbia, Zambia and Brazil. It is also found in Australia, India, Pakistan, Russia, South Africa, and United States. Aquamarine - Brazil, Afghanistan, and Mozambique produce the best sky..
What is Labradorite?
  What is Labradorite? Labradorite is part of the feldspar  mineral group. The feldspar group has two different varieties, the orthoclase (alkali) ​feldspars, which include amazonite, orthoclase and moonstone, and the plagioclase feldspars. The plagioclase feldspars include labradorite and aventurine feldspar. Labradorite is a colourful and interesting stone which has a range of colours and optical effects. It is popular with jewellery designers and buyers. It is named after  the source of the material - Labrador&nbs..
Different Types of Opal
PRECIOUS WHITE OPAL White opal has a light base and can have strong colour play. Many white opals can appear rather pale and they need a closed back bezel setting to maximise their iridescence. PRECIOUS BLACK OPAL Black opal has a dark background which can be dark blue, dark grey, dark green or grey-black . The darker the background the greater the value of the stone. Black opals                                                   &nb..
What is Opal?
OPAL - QUALITIES OF OPALS AND SOURCES The different colours that can be seen on an opal stem from the diffraction of light from very small silica spheres within the gemstone. This is the reason the colours change when opal is looked at from different directions.Larger and more ordered silica spheres within the stone  result in a greater range and intensity of colour. This colour play and interference of light is called iridescence. This is diferent from the opalescence seen within moonstones. Most gemstones are facted or cut to calibrated shapes and sizes., however o..
AVAILABILITY AND SOURCING OF GEMSTONES Due to the ongoing exploitation of deposits, the development of new mining technologies and the discovery of new sources, the availability of a wide range of gemstones has increased. Diamonds were once only sourced in India, however they are now sourced in quantity from Brazil , Borneo , and various African Countries, well as Russia, Australia, and Canada. With the increased choice of gemstones, jewellers need to know much more about the sources and colours of gemstones. The popularity of gemstones are generally led by qualit..
WHAT IS FELDSPAR? Feldspar is the most common rock forming mineral at the earth's surface. The different stones in the feldspar species provide jewellery makers with some of the most visually appealing stones. It provides a great choice of natural colours, comes in large sizes and is good value for money. It also has some beautiful optical effects. The feldspars are often described as having "schiller" which is an opalescence or adularescence. These terms all refer to the effect that appears to sit just below or above the surface of the stone when it is placed or ..
Different types of Brooches and  Pins A wide variety of different types of brooches can be found when looking for vintage brooches to collect or wear. Here are some of the key designer names and styles to look out for. VIntage  rhinestone brooches from Modern Vintage Style Modern Vintage Style has a variety of rhinestone, flower, pearl and old gold and silver brooches for sale  Trifari Animal Jelly Belly Pins Early on, the manufacturers of vintage jewellery understood the brooches powers of expression. Alfred Philippe, a designer for Trif..
 About Rose Quartz
ROSE QUARTZ GEMSTONE PROPERTIES Rose quartz can be a beautiful gemstone and is often used in jewellery.  The colours can range from pale pink to a deep peachy pink colour. Most rose quartz is quite included or cloudy and has a transulcent appearance. Clear "gemmy"material is limited and can be more expensive, especially the deeper colours. The lower grade material is more brittle and can be full of cracks and flaws.It is a good idea to be careful when buying cheaper material as cracks can open up when it is being set in jewellery or when being worn. Despite its bitterness, a ..
 Cabochon Cut Gemstones
CABOCHON CUT GEMSTONES In countries such as Great Britain and America,faceted stones are seen as the most desirable type of gem, and less value is attached to cabochons. In Germany however, a strong tradition of producing well-cut cabochons mean that buyers really appreciate the qualities of light, colour and texture.      Left to Right, Labradorite, Blue John, and Amethyst and Peridot Gemstone Cabochons from Modern Vintage Style The choice of material in the form of cabochons is much wider and cheaper, and it lendsitself to greater flexibil..
What is Marcasite?
WHAT IS MARCASITE Marcasite  originates from a natural mineral called 'pyrite'. Iron pyrite has a metallic finish and bright sheen. Its innate hardness  allows it to stand up well to scratches and dings over the years, and therefore, vintage marcasite pieces can be found in good condition many years after their creation. Pyrite is found in various parts of the world, but only a small element of it is suitable for the cutting processes necessary to create marcasite jewellery. Marcasite is both elegant and popular and it has been used in many types of jewellery as far back as&n..
 Enamel Use in Jewellery
  ENAMEL USE IN JEWELLERY DESIGN Enamelling is an old technique in which powdered clear glass, or powdered colour glass that has been mixed with pigments, is applied to a metal object and then fired .The powder then melts, flows, and hardens to a durable, smooth vitreous coating which is in essence a layer of pure pigment on a surface. In jewellery this technique is used to make everything from flower petals on a vintage necklace, to a portrait on a old locket necklace,  to the wings on an Art Nouveau dragonfly brooch.     ..
Scandinavian Modernism
SCANDINAVIAN MODERNISM Although the 1950's was the decade of design glitz , it had the opposite effect in Scandinavia where a new design esthetic emerged which had a great impact on all areas of design including jewellery. Silver was the preferred metal of choice as Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark had centuries old tradition of silversmithing, and silver was malleable and easy to work with. This allowed designers to mould jewellery into strong angles and abstract shapes. There were political aspects involved too, as silver was cheaper than other metals. This more democrat..
 Bernard Instone Jewellery
BERNARD INSTONE - EARLY LIFE Bernard Instone was born  in 1891 at "Neston Villa" in Kings Norton, Birmingham. In 1903 at the age of 12 he received a scholarship to attend the Central School of Art. His talent shone through and he received two further scholarships to continue his training. He studied  jewellery and practical silversmithing at the Birmingham School of Jewellery in Vittoria Street from 1904 until 1912 where he excelled. While at the school he studied under the famous Arts and Crafts jeweller Arthur Gaskin. After leaving Art School Instone began working at the stud..
About Norman Grant
A Scottish silver jewellery designer whose work is much prized today is Norman Grant. He was born in Forres, Scotland in 1943 and at the age of 18 started training at Grays School of Art in Aberdeen. Initially he studied graphic design before later moving into silversmithing . Having lived near the coast much of his jewellery designs reflected the natural shapes and details seen in the environment. Flower motifs, trees, seaweed, fish, wave and cloud motifs featured in his work, as well as microscopic plant cell structures. In the late sixties Norman Grant began to produce pieces of jewelle..
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What is Arts and Crafts Jewellery?
ARTS AND CRAFTS JEWELLERS A lot of the ideals of the Art Nouveau design movement were also shared by Arts and Crafts movement jewellers in Northern Europe,  Britain, and the United States. Both movements had deep roots in mid-19th century Britain. Two leading British cultural figures, the philosopher and designer William Morris and the art critic John Ruskin wrote about the dissatisfaction of many craftsmen and artists with industrialisation and the low quality goods it produced. Morris and Ruskin romanticised the medieval handicraft organisations believing that these groups ..
About Niels Erik From (N.E. FROM)
DANISH DESIGNER NIELS ERIK FROM  - EARLY YEARS Danish jeweller and silversmith Niels Erik From ( N.E. From) was born in 1908 and opened his first workshop in 1931 when he was still only twenty-three .  Over the next forty years  Niels Erik went on to become one one of the greats of Danish design, and  created many works including floral-inspired designs often set with semi-precious gemstones. These pieces took inspiration from the Skønvirke style. This was a Scandinavian development that formed part of Denmark’s Art Nouveau and Arts and C..
What is Suffragette Jewellery?
What is Suffragette Jewellery? As the 19th century drew to an end, women began actively looking for better rights, in particular to have their voices heard in government. The Suffragettes were a group of women campaigning and protesting for the right to vote . This was born out of the Suffragist Movement which started in the 1860s. Many women proudly wore jewellery expressing their support for the suffragette movement, which campaigned for votes for women and womens rights. Suffragette jewellery pieces were instantly recognisable because they were decorated with green, white, a..
Daniel Swarovski and Creation of Swarovski Crystals Towards the end of 19th century, Austrian jeweller Daniel Swarovski created a foil backing that made his high-quality faceted crystals almost indistinguishable from real diamonds. Demand was so great for the crystals  that in 1892 he patented a mechanical cutter so his “faceted stones” could be mass-produced.     Rhinestones named after the Rhine River The family business was first located in the Gablonz area of Bohemia, however, in 1895 Swarovski moved it to Austria close to the Rhine River—his fau..
Beautiful lariat necklaces  in gold vermeil and sterling silver from Modern Vintage Style..    Amethyst                                      Crystal Quartz                             Rose Quartz    Citrine and crystal                         Delicate silver heart               ..
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  Interested in British modernist jewellery design? Check out our illustrated guide to British Post War Jewellery Designers including  designer history , concepts, a.. Read More
  Interested in Finnish silver jewellery? Check out our illustrated guide to the top jewellery designers from Finland   1) Bjorn Weckstrom/Lapponia  Bjorn Weckstrom (193.. Read More
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