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Amazing Antique Suffragette Gilt Bronze Dragon Bracelet

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Unsigned: Pre 1930   item# 701482

Amazing Antique Suffragette Gilt Bronze Dragon Bracelet
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you!

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& Gift-Wrap if Desired) 

The early feminist who first owned this bracelet must have felt mighty powerful with it on her arm! She had a legion of dragons on parade, along with her bold Suffragette colors, plus nearly 100 grams in weight from the ornate gilt bronze metalwork and stones. It's clearly for a woman who likes her jewelry to bowl people over -- and could even be a weapon, if need be!

When green, violet and white appear together on historic jewelry, as they do here, this unusual color combination typically signifies that the piece was first owned by a member of the Suffragette movement -- for whom green represented hope, purple signified dignity and white stood for purity. The language we associate with "regard" jewelry applied, too: The "G" of green, "W" of white and "V" of violet comprised an abbreviation for Give Women (the) Vote. All this seems cryptic now, but was well understood by everyone in the days when messages were also communicated by which flowers you sent, how you held your fan and which corner of a calling card you folded down, if any.

To the Suffragettes' efforts through many decades in the U.K. and U.S., we modern women owe our right to vote. That right was finally extended to all American women in 1920 and to all in Great Britain in 1928. Thus, although most of the jewelry is Victorian, Edwardian or transitional, some dates from the Art Deco era.

This spectacular bracelet was probably among the last examples, dating from the 1920s, despite being very Art Nouveau in form. This is based on the type of clasp and the presence of a safety chain with the spring ring catch that came in around 1920. Based on both dating and the metalwork, it was most likely made in France, long renowned for skill with gilt bronze. The fabulous mounds of faux jade appear to be art glass, but seem actually to be of an early plastic (probably Galalith, invented in the 1890s). They're accompanied by twinkling amethyst pastes and faux pearls, all of which look original. Condition of the bracelet is lovely, its provenance is a Midwestern estate and the length is about 7 inches, right for the average wrist. If your wrist is smaller, one of the six linked plaques could easily be removed (and turned into a pendant or ring).

Suffragette jewelry has been rapidly gaining value since the star-studded TV movie "Iron Jawed Angels" appeared in 2004, revealing what those gals went through (including hunger strikes and beatings). Wearing Suffragette jewels is a great way to show your pride and appreciation and, now that the genre has been rediscovered, they're getting much harder to find.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail erinharris@comcast.net to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Antique Art Nouveau Suffragette Lavaliere Necklace

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Unsigned: Pre 1920   item# 701475

Antique Art Nouveau Suffragette Lavaliere Necklace
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you!

(Free U.S. Priority Shipping
& Gift-Wrap if Desired) 

Dating from the late 19th or very early 20th century, this spectacular antique necklace makes its feminist statement in a pretty, flirty way -- with a profusion of Art Nouveau leaves and flowers, lots of glittering jewels and a graceful lavalier form that sets the drop dancing as you move.

Both the surmount and the pendant are domed and highly sculptural. The gilt bronze is richly finished in two shades of rose gold: One is a slightly pink gold and the other deepens to red gold. As you know if you follow fashion, rose gold is the trendiest hue for jewelry now -- just as it was from circa 1890 until white metals became the rage in Edwardian times. Adorning it are a huge cabochon of art glass (or possibly Galalith) jade, four sparkling amethyst pastes and four faux pearls.

The unusual combination of green, purple and white typically signifies that a jewel was first owned by a member of the Suffragette movement. For them, green represented hope, purple signified dignity and white stood for purity. The language we associate with "regard" jewelry applied, too: The "G" of green, "W" of white and "V" of violet comprised an abbreviation for Give Women (the) Vote. All this seems cryptic now, but was clearly understood by everyone in an era when messages were also communicated by which flowers you sent, how you held your fan and which corner of a calling card you folded down, if any. To the Suffragettes' efforts through many decades in the U.K. and U.S., we modern women owe our right to vote. That right was finally extended to all American women in 1920 and to all in Great Britain in 1928. Thus, although most of the jewelry is Victorian, Edwardian or transitional, some was crafted in the Art Deco era. Forgotten for many years, these jewels have been rapidly gaining value since the movie "Iron Jawed Angels" appeared in 2004, revealing what the gals went through (including hunger strikes and beatings). Wearing Suffragette jewels is a great way to show your pride and appreciation and, now that the genre has been rediscovered, they're getting much harder to find.

This jewel, which reached us from a Utah estate, probably originated in France, long renowned for work in gilt bronze. It's quite a substantial piece and in lovely condition. A little age-appropriate surface wear can be noted on the reverse, but the front shows only the patina of time and all the stones appear original. The chain, although beautifully matched for color, is of a form developed a few decades later, so must have replaced an open-linked chain broken long ago. The brass filigree clasp is also too perfect to be original, but of the right style. Our price of course reflects the later additions. This is quite a substantial piece, as you'd expect with a bronze. The lavaliere is about 2.5 inches tall and the chain measures 7 inches on each side, so total hanging length is roughly 17 inches, allowing half an inch for the clasp. Most likely dating is circa 1895 - 1905.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail erinharris@comcast.net to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Deco Crystal Sterling Pendant w/ Diamond and Marcasites

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Silver: Deco: Pre 1930   item# 701089

Deco Crystal Sterling Pendant w/ Diamond and Marcasites
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you! 

This early 20th century pendant is a spectacular example of the icy white-on-white look so fashionable during the Edwardian era and immediately thereafter. Carved rock crystal had been used in earlier Victorian jewelry, but it took on a very different air when frosted, set in white metals, rather than Victorian gold or gilt, and given the Edwardian refinements of cutwork and millegrain detail.

The style persisted through transitional and early Art Deco years, and this pendant strikes me as slightly post-WWI. Its geometric shape suggests Art Deco, although it does have Edwardian-style cutwork and millegraining. It also has a lovely load of rivoli-cut marcasites (technically hematites) and a small diamond accent. Made of silver (stamped sterling) with richly patinated recesses, it measures about an inch wide and 1.75 inches tall. There's a lot of heft to it. Condition is lovely, as you see, and provenance is a Midwestern estate.

Jewels of this type are so beautiful that they're widely copied now, both in rock crystal and camphor glass. Even the replicas are valuable, but of course it's much nicer to have the real thing.

Thanks for looking!



Spectacular Antique Gilt Bronze Suffragette Bracelet

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Rhinestone: Pre 1920   item# 699147

Spectacular Antique Gilt Bronze Suffragette Bracelet
 click for details

GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you! 

When green, violet and white appear together on historic jewelry, this unusual color combination typically signifies that the piece was first owned by a member of the Suffragette movement -- for whom green represented hope, purple signified dignity and white stood for purity. The language we associate with "regard" jewelry applied, too: The "G" of green, "W" of white and "V" of violet comprised an abbreviation for Give Women (the) Vote. All this seems cryptic now, but was clearly understood by everyone in an era when messages were conveyed by the flowers you sent, how you held your fan and which corner of a calling card you folded down, if any.

To the Suffragettes' efforts through many decades in the U.K. and U.S., we modern women owe our right to vote. That right was finally extended to all American women in 1920 and to all in Great Britain in 1928. Thus, although most of the jewelry is Victorian, Edwardian or transitional, some dates from the Art Deco era.

In the case of this bracelet, we have to rule out Edwardian times, because it's so substantial: weighing about 50 grams. Edwardian jewels tended to be delicate and airy, as you know, and they often featured white metals. Thus, it must be Victorian or post-World War I. The design is certainly Art Nouveau, being loaded with curves and scrollwork, and the four domed plaques are joined by fold-over links that are typically 19th century (narrower than the classic bookchain, but basically the same idea). It's impossible to tell for certain whether it dates from the 1890s or a couple of decades later, during the first Victorian Revival period. Either way, it's antique by American 75-year standards. I see nothing that can be called damage -- only age-appropriate surface wear visible under high magnification and, on the reverse, some residue of old glue yellowed with time. Any good jeweler could remove that in a twinkling, if it bothers you, and could also safely polish up the metalwork if you want a brighter look.

From a Florida estate, this beauty measures about 7 inches long, 1.5 inches wide and more than .25 an inch thick. In addition to the 4 big cabochons of faux jade (very beautifully marbled), there are 8 faceted amethyst pastes and 8 faux pearls. The jades are most likely Bohemian (or Czech, if fashioned after WWI), but the amethysts and pearls could be French and I'm inclined to think the setting is French, since working with gilt bronze has been a specialty there for centuries.

Suffragette jewelry has steadily risen in price since the movie "Iron Jawed Angels" appeared in 2004, revealing what the gals went through (including hunger strikes and beatings). Wearing Suffragette jewels is a great way to show your pride and appreciation and, now that the genre has been rediscovered, they have serious investment value, too.

There's no charge for insured U.S. Priority shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail erinharris@comcast.net to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Rare Antique German Art Deco Variscite in Sterling Ring

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Silver: Deco: Pre 1930   item# 698877

Rare Antique German Art Deco Variscite in Sterling Ring
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you!

(Free U.S. Priority Shipping
& Gift-Wrap if Desired) 

This is among the most fascinating antique rings I've ever seen, because of its extremely unusual stone. I had to look it up in my gems book, having never run across one before. Like the ring, the stone is German -- taking its name from the Latin "Variscia" (now called Vogtland, a region including Bavaria, Saxony, Thuringia and part of the Czech Republic). It's distinctive for its blue-green color and white veins. The type found in Utah is darker, often with spiderwebbing and brown matrix, but this stone is pure aqua and white -- gorgeous with the silver mount framing it here.

The ring is an ultimate Art Deco design, certainly dating from the 1920s. Its dramatic pattern of sunrays forming pyramid shapes at each side shows Egyptian Revival influence and is finely adorned with millegrain detail and sparkling rivoli-cut marcasites. Sunrays repeat on fancy prongs at the top and bottom of the face, which measures 3/4 of an inch tall: large, without being overwhelming. Including those elaborate shoulders visible from the front, it's about an inch wide.

A great deal of age patina is in place and I haven't disturbed it. Naturally you can make the silver shine like the dickens, if you want to. Condition of the engraving and stones is wonderfully crisp. The points of the marcasites haven't even smoothed, so the ring can't have been worn much. The only flaw I note on close examination is that the mounting sits a bit lower on one side than the other. The stone may have fallen out at one time and been reset a little crooked. Any jeweler could quickly put that right, if it bothers you, but you really don't notice at a glance. Marks are Germany -- neither East nor West, which assures us of great age -- and Sterling, rather than the later 925. Present size is about a US 4, easily altered since the back of the shank isn't ornamented. Provenance is a Chicago area estate.

This is a very sturdy and sophisticated jewel that can be worn to stunning effect by either a man or a woman. There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail erinharris@comcast.net to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Antique Art Nouveau Uncas Sterling Marcasite Rose Ring

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Silver: Art Nouveau: Pre 1920   item# 698080

Antique Art Nouveau Uncas Sterling Marcasite Rose Ring
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you! 

If you don't mind being noticed (and envied), this large and spectacular antique ring is meant for you. It's a knuckle-covering 1 1/4 inches tall and 3/4 of an inch wide at leaf level.

The design, as you see, is absolutely enchanting. Marcasite "dewdrops" nestle among the rose petals and their shape is echoed by round embossing on the leaves. Edges and shoulders are lovingly detailed, as well. Naturally this was the creation of a master, namely Vincent Sorrentino, an Italian immigrant who formed Uncas Manufacturing Company in Rhode Island in 1911. The turn of the twentieth century in America attracted many talented artisans and jewelers from Italy, who were instrumental in the development of the American fine and costume jewelry industry. The Uncas "U" between two arrows (their earliest mark) appears inside the ring, along with the Sterling stamp.

Most likely it was made before 1918, since the ring is so Art Nouveau and that style didn't survive World War I. Present size (easily changed) is about a US 4.75. The rivoli-cut marcasites normally smooth after this long, but here they're still sharply pointed for maximum dazzle. Overall condition is simply lovely: better than that of the first ring of this type that we had in the past and as fine as the second, which sold within days -- so, if this strikes your fancy, it would be smart not to delay.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail erinharris@comcast.net to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Exceptional Edwardian BELAIS White Gold Cufflinks

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Gold: Edwardian: Pre 1910   item# 696818

Exceptional Edwardian BELAIS White Gold Cufflinks
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you!  

Even if you already have a pair of wonderful white gold cufflinks by the legendary Belais Brothers, you may need these, too. Their design motif is especially interesting, in that it combines an anticipatory taste of Art Deco geometry with delicate Edwardian foliate and lattice details on an elegantly elongated shield form. And that sleek diamond-shaped panel at the center would be a great spot for a monogram.

This is a Belais design I've never seen before, most likely dating from around 1905. The type of connector used, a shank fixed at one side and hinged at the other, is also typically Edwardian. Another indication of great age is that the stamping isn't typical. Only two reverses are marked "Belais White Gold Front," whereas later examples from transitional and Art Deco times are normally marked on all four reverses and state whether they're 14k or 18k. Thus, this pair must've been made while the Belais brothers were still experimenting with formulae for white gold -- a process they began around 1887. We'll have to content ourselves with uncertainty about exact gold content. It would be a sacrilege to mess these beauties up with files and test acids. Their size is 5/8" by 1/2", provenance is a Deep South estate and condition is lovely, requiring high magnification to note any surface wear.

With fashion's return to the elegance of French cuffs, antique cufflinks are flying off our shelves as fast as we can find them, particularly those by Belais. When you possess a piece marked 'Belais,' quite simply you own the best of the best, because the Belais brothers were the *gods* of white gold jewelry in the early 20th century, until the Great Depression caused the company's closure by destroying the market for luxury goods.

Thanks for looking!



Spectacular Antique Suffragette Bracelet

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Rhinestone: Pre 1920   item# 696685

Spectacular Antique Suffragette Bracelet
 click for details

GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you!

(Free U.S. Priority Shipping
& Gift-Wrap if Desired) 

When green, violet and white appear together on historic jewelry, this unusual color combination typically signifies that the piece was first owned by a member of the Suffragette movement -- for whom green represented hope, purple signified dignity and white stood for purity. The language we associate with "regard" jewelry applied, too: The "G" of green, "W" of white and "V" of violet comprised an abbreviation for Give Women (the) Vote. All this seems cryptic now, but was clearly understood by everyone in an era when messages were also communicated by which flowers you sent, how you held your fan and which corner of a calling card you folded down, if any.

To the Suffragettes' efforts through many decades in the U.K. and U.S., we modern women owe our right to vote. That right was finally extended to all American women in 1920 and to all in Great Britain in 1928. Thus, although most of the jewelry is Victorian, Edwardian or transitional, some dates from the Art Deco era.

In the case of this bracelet, we have to rule out Edwardian times, because it's so substantial: weighing more than 55 grams. Edwardian jewels tended to be delicate and airy, as you know, and they often featured white metals. Thus, it must be Victorian or post-World War I. The design is certainly Art Nouveau, being loaded with curves and scrollwork, and the four domed plaques are joined by engraved bookchain links that are typically 19th century. The only thing that argues for a later dating is its amazing condition. The gilding remains bright, the gorgeous stones are in great shape and the only signs of wear evident without high magnification are on the links, which seem to be of softer gilt brass rather than gilt bronze. Heavy wear is unusual on Suffragette jewelry, though, since most people wore it only occasionally and tucked it away after the vote was gained. Of course the bracelet is now an antique, by American 75-year standards, whether made in the 1890s or a couple of decades later.

From an estate in the Pacific Northwest, it measures about 7.5 inches long, 1.25 inches wide and more than half an inch tall. The layered construction and very large green stones make it highly dimensional. In addition to the 8 big crescents of faux jade (very beautifully marbled), there are 8 faceted amethyst pastes and 4 faux pearls. All appear original. The jades are most likely Bohemian (or Czech, if fashioned after WWI), but the amethysts and pearls could be French and I'm inclined to think the setting is French, since working with gilt bronze has been a specialty there for centuries.

Suffragette jewelry has steadily risen in price since the movie "Iron Jawed Angels" appeared in 2004, revealing what the gals went through (including hunger strikes and beatings). Wearing Suffragette jewels is a great way to show your pride and appreciation and, now that the genre has been rediscovered, they have serious investment value, too.

There's no charge for insured U.S. Priority shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Antique Art Nouveau Suffragette Lavaliere Necklace

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Rhinestone: Pre 1920   item# 696564

Antique Art Nouveau Suffragette Lavaliere Necklace
 click for details

GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you! 

This antique Suffragette necklace is a charmer, styled with an elaborate, oversized surmount and a surprising drop, unexpectedly short, that whimsically suggests a watch fob.

The necklace is jeweled with pretend-jade of beautifully marbled early plastic (probably Galalith, invented in the 1890s) plus amethyst pastes and faux pearls, but the gilt metalwork is the real star here. It's highly dimensional with flower petals, some also suggesting shells. The airy openwork and gracefully articulated construction argue for an Edwardian dating, although it could have been crafted a little earlier or later. The surmount and drop measure about 2 3/8 inches, to which the chain and filigree clasp add about 15 inches. Even the chain is extraordinarily well detailed with bright-cut patterns and beaded edges. This is a very supple chain that's a joy to touch.

My best guess on origin is France, based on the sophisticated wit of the design, the quieter sparkle of the stones compared to those made in Bohemia and the heft of the metal. I expect there's bronze under this gilding, not brass, and the French have always known their way around gilt bronze. Condition, as you see, is superb, showing only slight surface wear on high points under extreme magnification, and provenance is a West Coast estate.

As you know if you collect Suffragette jewelry, the unusual combination of green, purple and white had deep meaning for early feminists. For them, green represented hope, purple signified dignity and white stood for purity. The language we associate with "regard" jewelry applied, too: The "G" of green, "W" of white and "V" of violet comprised an abbreviation for Give Women (the) Vote. All this seems cryptic now, but was clearly understood by everyone in an era when messages were also communicated by which flowers you sent, how you held your fan and which corner of a calling card you folded down, if any. The wealthiest suffragettes mixed amethysts and pearls or diamonds with green stones such as emeralds or peridots, but pretend gems were naturally favored by the majority.

Wearing Suffragette jewels is a great way to show our appreciation of those who won us the vote. That right was finally extended to all American women in 1920 and to all in Great Britain in 1928. Although forgotten for many years, these jewels have been steadily gaining value since the movie "Iron Jawed Angels" appeared in 2004, revealing what the gals went through (including hunger strikes and beatings) and, now that the genre has been rediscovered, they're getting much harder to find. This is a jewel that offers significant investment potential, as well as exceptional beauty.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Stunning Vintage 9 Inch Inlaid Red Lacquer Hairpin Set

Catalogue: Archives: Estate Jewelry: Accessories: Pre 1980   item# 696358

Stunning Vintage 9 Inch Inlaid Red Lacquer Hairpin Set
 click for details

GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


Sold; thank you! 

These gorgeous vintage hair ornaments will fasten your hair up quickly and securely, adding exotic style while also being far kinder to hair than bobbypins and bands. Although they're usually called hair sticks now, these are technically one point hairpins -- a type used by ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, as well as in Asia. These are clearly an Oriental version: longer than the European sort and worn in pairs, often crossed in the middle. That was a Japanese innovation, but the cinnabar red color here also evokes China.

Especially exciting and unusual about these is their highly abstract decoration. Conventional motifs from nature are a great deal more common than these lavish swirls of antique gold and cinnabar black. Each pin also has six inlaid panels of iridescent carved abalone plus a host of smaller accents that appear to be white shell. A lot of hand-craftsmanship went into this ornamentation, which is well sealed under clear lacquer. Presumably there's wood at the core, but none is visible. Overall condition is fabulous, showing no surface wear without high magnification and no losses of inlay.

Each pin is 9 inches long, with an effective length (the undecorated part that actually goes into your hair) of about 4.5 inches. The lower portion is smooth as silk, which is important for avoiding damage, and finishes with the rounded narrow point that also signifies high quality.

Provenance is the New Mexico estate of a lady who acquired them in San Francisco during the mid-1970s. Actual age is unknown, but they have to be at least 30 years old. The 1920s wouldn't be out of the question, since Oriental hair ornaments of this type were exceedingly popular then; if that's the case, they're antique, rather than just vintage.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!


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