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Costume Jewelry

Costume Jewelry

From Art Deco to Art Modern jewelry, there are new ways of exploring the potential of not so precious materials for special days and occasions. Rhinestones, crystals, glass and synthetic stones are becoming bracelets, pendants and even crowns.

Costume jewelry pieces, also known as trinkets, caused turmoil when they tried to occupy the territory of fine jewelry, back in the second decade of the 20th century.

People wanted to wear coloured and complex bracelets, pendants and earrings using less expensive core materials. If you were going to the beach, during summer, you won't probably be taking a fine jewelry charm to the salted water.

Because of its fashionable characteristic, all costume jewelry would come and go with like trends and waves. Trinkets were seen as simple accessories to go with main outfits.

Just like a costume or outfit, these inexpensive jewelry pieces emulated the imagery of valuable gemstones with their colors, durability and natural imperfections. Lead, plastic, acrylic, leather and wood start to look like wearable designs.

Here are a few examples of costume jewelry pieces:



There are three major periods in the history of costume jewelry:

Art Deco (1920–1930s)
Retro (1935 to 1950)
Art Modern (1945 to 1960)
Meanwhile, costume jewelry has been upgraded and is already embedding precious metals and gems. Still, contemporary trinkets are affordable, popular and a middle class statement in Western societies. Cubic zirconia rings and earrings are an excellent example of costume jewelry.

In the last 50 years, high end jewelry brands and jewelry houses have been producing more jewelry pieces that can be used in multiple daily moments.

Faux jewelry, for example, was popularized by fashion designer Coco Chanel. Gold and faux pearls were blended and marketed as unique creative jewelry pieces.


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