Vintage and antique jewelry: what are they and what to wear with
Remember how in childhood we secretly got to the cherished mother's and grandmother's boxes with jewelry? It seemed to us that there were incredible treasures stored there, which only queens deserve! And then we grew up, and the jewelry of mothers and grandmothers began to seem to us at first ordinary, and then – ridiculous and even funny.
So: it's time to grow up a little more and once again open the box with old jewelry. Antique jewelry in 2022 acquires an updated sound. Their presence in the bow speaks of the exceptional taste and respectability of the owner!
What is considered vintage jewelry
Let's understand the terminology. Truly ancient jewelry is stored as expected in museums and private collections of very, very wealthy people.
Vintage is considered to be jewelry made at least 20-30 years ago with signs of the corresponding era. That is, a woman of elegant age may well have her own collection of interesting jewelry purchased in her youth.
If the decoration turned out to be half a century old, then it is already referred to as antiques. But in the United States and Canada, the attitude to this term is much more selective. Antique items there are considered to have been made almost 200 years ago!
Antique jewelry is able to immerse us in the corresponding era with its inherent style: Empire, Art Deco, Art Nouveau, Baroque, Classicism and so on. These styles are successfully played by modern designers, but jewelry with a history is especially appreciated.
From vintage and antique should be distinguished rare jewelry, released in a limited edition or even one of a kind. And not necessarily very old!
Tracing the path of jewelry from vintage to the present day, you can notice several trends:
- Antique jewelry, for the most part, is of higher quality and durable compared to modern ones (especially when it comes to costume jewelry made by a manufactured method). Consider grandma's gilded brooch: most likely it is perfectly preserved for such a venerable age.
- Modern materials for the manufacture of costume jewelry are more diverse. Still: jewelry epoxy resin, polymer clay, foamiran - these are all very young materials. And amateur masters create beauty literally from everything in the world!
- Vintage jewelry is usually more intricate in design. About 50 years ago, the minimalist style was a revolutionary innovation. Most fashionistas still preferred more sophisticated jewelry: with filigree, a game of enamels, interesting combinations of pebbles and so on.
- In antique jewelry, imitation is clearly traced. In those days, natural materials (leather, rough threads, wood) were not in fashion. Therefore, jewelry was created according to the same principle as a jeweler, only even more "expensive-rich".
Vintage jewelry is especially appreciated for its presentable appearance. Only noble signs of age (for example, patina, scuffs, small scratches and irregularities) are allowed. Frankly restored jewelry is valued lower than those preserved in its original form.
Vintage jewelry of famous brands is especially appreciated. Some of them are still functional today (Chanel, Christian Dior, Fendi, Givenchy), others have sunk into oblivion and are known only to collectors.
The most expensive and well-preserved specimens are entered into special catalogs and sold at auctions for enormous sums of money. However, true connoisseurs of antiquity know that, wandering through the flea markets of European and American cities, you can become the owner of an incredible rarity for relatively little money.
From vintage and antique jewelry should be distinguished modern jewelry made "antique", that is, in techniques and materials popular in the relevant era.
Subject to good quality, vintage jewelry can be used to create stylish bows. They are much cheaper than analogues with history, so they are available to fashionistas.
Jewelry of our ancestors
Now interest in ancient Russian jewelry is reviving. Unfortunately, truly antique jewelry more than a century old died in the flames of the revolution, and the surviving specimens are in museums and private collections (mainly abroad).
In many cases thetraditional jewelry has to be recreated from archival records, drawings and specimens preserved in museums. All that is sold now in stores are new products created based on the jewelry of our ancestors. Sometimes they are lucky enough to have the right to life.
So, let's look at the jewelry that was worn by our ancestors
Pendants instead of earrings
Our ancestors firmly believed that the soul leaves the body through the mouth. To prevent this, many ornaments were hung around the neck, which also played the role of amulets.
Jewelry was replete with all sorts of metal elements (including bells) that rang at the slightest movement. It was believed that no malicious spirit would approach such a ringing beauty. And if in the decoration there is a Moon (the sickle of the moon with horns down with all sorts of sacred signs), the woman is exactly under reliable protection.
Necklaces were then called multi-layered beads made of glass and artificial pearls, which were worn mainly over the clothes of representatives of all classes. But hryvnias (hoops around the neck made of precious metals) served as special signs of high status.
Complex multi-layer beads are an ideal solution for decoration in the style of ethno-boho. In a special honor, the red color - our ancestors considered it protective.
Ancestors of modern bracelets
Sleeves, hoops, naruchi - these are all the names of the Slavic ancestors of modern metal bracelets. They played, first of all, a utilitarian role: they fixed long wide sleeves for convenience in work. But even without protective signs, these decorations could not do.
Wide bracelets-hoops (closed and not) with Old Church Slavonic symbols are relevant today. And you can wear them over the sleeves, as our distant ancestors did.
Jewelry and costume jewelry
Vintage jewelry is much more monotonous than those made in the West. In the boxes of fashionistas, one could find gold rings and earrings with large transparent stones of different colors (usually synthetic), as well as long chains with pendants that do not differ in diversity. Such a jeweler is not of particular interest, but in combination with a properly selected bow, it will also play.
The most interesting is the high-quality Czech and German costume jewelry, which was incredibly scarce. Rare lucky people brought it from abroad and sold it at a triple price. In special esteem were beads made of artificial pearls and brooches with Czech glass and semi-precious stones.
Among the jewelry, products made of Baltic amber are of particular interest Very attractive look and jewelry with finifti, that is, painting on enamel. As a rule, earrings, pendants and rings with finifti were made of cupronickel and silver, so that they still retain a fairly presentable appearance.
The classic finifti theme is all sorts of floral motifs. The appropriateness of such jewelry in the creation of modern outfits can be argued. But you need to understand that in front of you are the rarest antique rarities that are very expensive. And they were created exclusively by hand by hereditary enamellers, who passed on their own art from generation to generation.
What to wear vintage with
If you come across real vintage jewelry, you will immediately feel the surrounding aura of antiquity. Believe me, you will instantly feel its relevance to a particular bow – it magically incorporates a refined sense of style.
And in general, you can not bother much about this: the incredibly popular boho in various manifestations is friendly to the most incredible alliances. And there can be a lot of jewellery, and it is absolutely diverse.
And vintage recycling is also in trend - the introduction of modern trends in the appearance of jewelry with a history. For example, a mother's pendant with finift can be made friends with a chain of modern weaving, original pendants can be added to vintage earrings, and an antique seal can be worn along with an ultra-trend ring made of baroque pearls. Antique jewelry is very expensive and affordable for few. But who prevents you from making a picky inspection of your grandmother's box, wandering through flea markets or just buying a quality modern vintage-style jewelry?