Monday, September 16, 2013

Faking the Frippery

It's possible that one of my favorite things to design and
collect in the world is costume jewelry. Growing up I used to scour my favorite antique shops for their sparkiest pieces. I'm a die hard magpie and costume jewelry could always transform an outfit and make me sparkle like a duchess! (but not like a princess because that's too much of a pain)

We rather take costume jewelry for granted these days, but the decade we can really thank for it for starting the fervor for fakery is the 1920's...

With styles changing fast after WWI, and a growing spectrum of women finally able to participate in fashion, the inherited gems of the aristocracy could no longer fill our thirst for baubles, and it was time for paste to make a come back.

Dusausoy (Jewels) 1923 J.G Domergue Art Deco Style Doll ElegantUsed by Coco Chanel as a means to complete a woman's costume and unify her vision, fake gems were a must have for the wealthy woman looking for a little frosting to co-ordinate her pristine new outfit for the night,  and for the average gal on the streets it also allowed women of more modest means to enjoy wearing "jewels" of a less modest design. Jewelry designers also got to let their imaginations run wild without the constraints of precious material costs creating all kinds of whimsical designs.

I love vintage jewelry, real and "fake" from the 1920's for it's unique designs. There were a lot of interesting mixes of sparkle and colorful geometry. They also loved their pearls, and long time blog followers know what a soft spot I have for pearls!

I've been craving some deco gems to ad to my wardrobe lately, and despite being seeing some amazing period precious stone pieces, I just don;t have a Christie's budget, I'm also concentrating a great deal on sharpening my skills in the jewelry area so it felt only natural to turn my hands at designing and making a little costume jewelry set for myself, ready for when I get that deco feeling!

I went with a bit of Nile green  and tried to capture the long lean lines of my favorite 20's jewelry pieces. Something with the hard geometric shapes, but in a softer pallet to go with my usual wardrobe of pastels. They've proved quite versatile together and separate, and something I'm going to get a lot of millage out of.

I love working in costume jewelry using a lot of techniques I was taught to work with in fine jewelry, and I always give a big "thanks" to the 1920's for setting the ball rolling!


  1. Gah! So cute and cool!
    I LOVE your hair in the photo! Did you cut your hair, or stayle to look short?
    If you styled it short, I humbly request a tutorial!
    The more detailed the better...I am REALLY daft on hair styles, but would love to try this!

    1. I'll have a go a building a tutorial for the hair, it was actually pretty quick to do and all done with just rolling the hair and pinning it to look short (to fickle to actually cut it I think!)



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