Jewelry in the Modern World

modern jewelBack in the 13th century the growth of creativity in jewelry were stunned because Medieval Sumptuary Laws were enacted to control jewelry growth. This was because even the common townsfolk were starting to wear pearls, gold and silver jewelry.

It was only during the emergence of Napoleon that jewelry’s prominence came back to France. Jewelry suddenly became pomp in fashion during Napoleon’s time.  It was the “Joailliers” that worked with fine jewelry and the “bijoutiers” that worked with less precious materials.

Members of the French Imperial family had the royal family gems of the previous French Imperial family turned into a new neo-classical style of trend. The influence for their designs were the Greek and the Romans. Later on these new trends found their way to the whole of Europe, particularly in England.

A jewelry that became popular during Napoleon’s time was the parure. A parure is a piece of jewelry that had a precious gem matched or put on a comb, tiara, necklace, pins, earrings, rings, etc. A person is considered to have a full parure when he or she has four of them. It is considered a demi if it was three or less.

When Queen Victoria came to the throne in 1837 jewelry became romantic and nationalistic. Jewelry at her time influenced the Arts and Crafts movements. But the mass production of jewelry during her era created low quality jewelry. These low quality jewelries saw Victorian women rebel.

That rebellion made Tiffany’s see a niche market. Tiffany’s created jewelries that were very high standard and operated stores mainly in Europe.

The Arts and Crafts movement was simply a reaction to the inferior jewelry at that time as a result of the industrial revolution. Jewelry at this time gave arts a simpler and medieval look to the items.

Following the Arts and Crafts movements was the art Nouveau movement. The Nouveau movement created new looks for jewelry. Jewelries during this movement had curves that sometimes insinuated romanticism.

We now jump a century later to the 20th century. Jewelry in our current world has always been influenced by the American culture.  What people mostly see in the glamour world of Hollywood is mostly emulated.

In fact Hollywood’s influence on jewelry was first felt during the 1940-50’s. But it got stalled again when World War II hit. This is because during the war, the metals were rationed.

Jewelry started to rise once again during the 1980’s when American soap operas started their strong influence around the globe.

Today jewelry is as strong as ever. It is not only women who mostly use cheap jewelry. Now, more and more men also enjoy the glitz of jewelry as well.


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