// Alexandra May Jewellery / vintage fashion rss

Timeless Marcasite Jewellery

by Alexandra May | November 06, 2015 | 0 Comments


Year after year, our range of Marcasite silver proves to be one shop's most adored collections - it seems the glittering jewellery's instantly recognisable, turn-of-the-century look sparks nostalgia in people of all ages, whatever their personal style. We've just added another 30 pieces to our extensive online range, as we predict it'll be very popular come Christmas.

The stones in Marcasite jewellery are actually pieces of Pyrite, a gem that became known as 'Fool's Gold' in the 19th century after gold miners attempted to pass one material off as the other. It was its affordability, however, that ensured the stone's enduring appeal: young Victorian girls could afford to copy the Queen's style by accessorising with a marcasite brooch, while economising 1930s women saw it as a way to wear sparkling, encrusted jewellery without having to face the diamond price tag.

During the 1920s, the gem enjoyed another spell of popularity. It was so ubiquitous that it cropped up on all manner of occasion-wear: belts, headbands, dresses, shoe buckles.

A very Art Deco Luke Stockley design:

            Have a look at some nostalgic images in my Inspiration Gallery.

Enjoy browsing the site!

Posted in 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, art deco, Art Deco earrings, art deco jewellery, Art nouveau, brooches, collectable jewellery, costume jewellery, costume jewelry, glamour, handmade, handmade earrings, handmade jewellery, Luke Stockley, Marcasite, marcasite and more, marcasite earrings, marcasite jewellery, marcasite stones, mother of pearl, mother of pearl brooch, sterling silver, sterling silver jewellery, vintage earrings, vintage fashion, vintage jewellery, vintage necklace, vintage rings, vintage wedding jewellery, Wedding Jewellery

Fantastic Plastics

by Alexandra May | October 01, 2015 | 0 Comments

Bakelite - named after its chemist creator, Leo Baekeland - was an early plastic used as a cheaper alternative to crystal and metal in depression-era jewellery.

Some of my Bakelite bracelets

Here's my beloved Miriam Haskell giant black and orange flower brooch that I spotted in Hirst Antiques.

Miriam Haskel brooch

Due to the limited range of dyes available at the time, Bakelite's colours tend to be deeper and richer than those of modern plastics - vintage pieces usually come in shades of green, brown, black, mustard and red. The material is very resilient and polishes to a high shine. Also when worn together there is the special distinctive 'clunk' that only Bakelite has...

My purple set

Since Bakelite was easy to manipulate and set hard, jewellers let their imaginations run wild and created wearable works of art. Pictured below are a pair of cheerful 'thumbs up' brooches.

Today these innovative wonders are highly sought-after by collectors and jewellery fans. You can view some of the most beautiful examples of modern and vintage Bakelite on my Pinterest board.

Here are also some of my own pieces from my latest addiction....Bakelite!!

Brandon BakeliteEnjoy browsing!


Posted in 1930s, 1940s, 1940s glamour, american, american jewellery, bakelite, bangles, costume jewellery, cuffs, dita von teese, glamour, lucite, man ray, Miriam Haskell, plastic, plastic bangles, plastic jewellery, retro, retro jewellery, secondhand jewellery, thirties, vintage, vintage fashion, wartime fashion

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