All of us at Isadoras love animals, so it is only natural that we have a special connection with the inspirational animal jewelry in our antique heirloom collection.
Animals have been a popular motif throughout the entire history of jewelry.
The first animal ornaments can be traced back over 4,500 years ago to the Sumerians, who buried Queen Puabi with gold and lapis lazuli fish-shaped amulets, and a gold amulet fashioned into two joined antelopes.
Fast forward to the Victorian Era – by the late 1800s, the rapid development of science and technology caused a population shift from rural areas to cities. Against the backdrop of polluted rivers and poison factory smoke, nature was seen as a healthy alternative. The middle class romantic fascination with nature - animals, insects, and plants - was manifested in jewelry, art, and science.
When we think of famous, midcentury animal jewelry, one name readily comes to mind – Wallis Simpson. The Duke of Windsor lavished Simpson with jewelry, and the sentimental collection of Cartier cats were pieces that she and her husband co-designed with Jeanne Toussaint. Simpson’s incredible crouching panther is possibly one of the most illustrious bracelets in the world.
And, for fun (and because it is so cool) – below, is the amazing midcentury double-crocodile necklace designed by Cartier for actress Maria Felix.
The crocodile necklace features 1,023 fancy yellow diamonds and 1,060 circular-cut emeralds.
From the glorious ornamentation found in Queen Puabi’s tomb, to the Victorian fascination with nature, to the midcentury Cartier panthers designed for Wallis Simpson, antique animal jewelry has made a profound statement not only about the era in which it was crafted, but also about those for whom it was designed.
Take a look at some of our favorite vintage animal pieces from our heirloom collection – naturally inspired and exceptionally beautiful.
Top: Victorian Lion Head Pendant
Lower Left: Victorian Snake Diamond Ring
Lower Right: Antique French 18KT Bird Brooch
Top: Edwardian Silver Animal Cufflinks
Lower Left: Vintage Marlin Fish Pins
Lower Right: Vintage Marcasite Bird Brooch
Top: Victorian Gold Lion Bracelet
Lower Left: Circa 1970s Lion Head Ring
Lower Right: Tiffany 18KT Dolphin Brooch
Top: Silver Bull Belt Buckle
Lower Left: Victorian Butterfly Brooch
Lower Right: Vintage Silver Horse Cufflinks
If you have any questions, you can reach our knowledgeable staff at 206.441.7711, or e-mail Isadoras Antique Jewelry at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This entry was posted in Jewelry History, Inspiration and tagged midcentury, heirloom collection, victorian era, gemstones, cartier, antique jewelry, Animal Jewelry, Isadoras Antique Jewelry, Diamonds on March 26, 2016 by Jill Schoenleber.
Before there were wedding bands, lovers fashioned reeds into rings to pledge their love. Whether made of gold or grass, the meaning was the same – infinite circle, everlasting love.
The band has symbolized enduring love between two souls for over 3,000 years.
Wedding bands are so much more than circular rings – they are an individual reflection of your own personality, as well your love for one another.
At Isadoras, we feel that wedding rings can be any ring that brings you joy...and history supports this idea.
In the past, there was not one prescribed “type” of wedding band for those who pledged their troth. The looks were varied and interesting.
Below, is a 15th century niello wedding band inscribed with the words: the two shall become one flesh.
Gimmel wedding rings surged in popularity during the Victorian Era.
Gimmel rings were made of two intertwined halves. The word “gimmel” is derived from the Latin “gemellus,” meaning “twin.”
In the ring below, the hands hold each other signifying union – in love or friendship.
The snake ring has symbolized true love since the 1800s and would make a wonderful wedding band.
In America, men did not wear wedding rings until World War II. Throughout the war, young couples often married knowing the groom would soon be sent to battle. These young lovers wore their wedding rings not knowing if they would ever see each other again. The rings served as reminders of each other over time and distance. According to the website, The Knot, by the time World War II was in full swing, 85 percent of marriages were dual-ring ceremonies.
And this tradition continues today.
All of the antique rings in the heirloom collection at Isadoras are as unique and individual as your love for each other.
We have recently added over one hundred amazing antique and vintage pieces to our heirloom collection!! And we would be happy to help you find an exceptional wedding band that is perfect for you.
Visit us in-store or online and experience our beautiful antique jewelry collection.
Some fantastic options for wedding rings are below. Take a look and enjoy!!
Top: Vintage Opal & Diamond Ring
Lower Left: 1901 Chester Sapphire 18KT Ring
Lower Right: Birmingham Gold Engraved Ring
Top: Edwardian Diamond Yellow Gold Band
Lower Left: Midcentury Diamond Band
Lower Right: French Zircon 18KT White Gold Ring
Top: 1911 18KT Gold Diamond Snake Ring
Lower Left: Edwardian Double-Row Diamond Ring
Lower Right: Edwardian Engraved Buckle Ring
This entry was posted in Our Thoughts, Jewelry History, Inspiration and tagged gold ring, gold band, wedding band, love, wedding ring, Isadoras, antique jewelry, Vintage, Isadoras Antique Jewelry on March 25, 2016 by Jill Schoenleber.
All of us who work at Isadoras, absolutely adore every single piece of jewelry in our store. When we have been asked to pick a favorite piece, we find it impossible to decide because there are so many amazing pieces to choose from. And we are drawn to each piece for different reasons.
The day the Stunning Retro Ring came into the store, we were all blown away by its character and presence. And we still gravitate toward it – stunned by its beauty.
This handmade Retro-Era ring is spectacular. The focal diamond weighs .62 carats, and the accent stones add almost 1.5 carats of glittering gorgeousness.
While the effervescent diamonds take center stage, the 18KT gold setting adds a dash of the bold and dramatic, with a retro vibe. It is the perfect partner to host diamonds of such brilliance and magnitude.
We want to wear this ring everywhere we can - every. single. day.
Stop by Isadorsas and immerse yourself in our amazing antique heirloom jewelry collection. And visit us online.
This entry was posted in Piece of the Week and tagged stunning retro diamond ring, heirloom collection, Piece of the Week, Isadoras Antique Jewelry, Diamonds, Rings on March 16, 2016 by Jill Schoenleber.
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