Memories 01.06.2017

Art of Mourning Shop

Dear Mourners, the Art of Mourning Shop on Threadless is now alive! I’ve been using the primary design elements and…

Photography 16.12.2016

Jewels, Memory and Photography

Despite the title of this dissertation in mourning and sentimental jewellery being ‘Art of Mourning’, the primary message of the…

Miniatures 04.07.2016
Mourning miniature for a child.

A Boy’s Mourning Miniture

The 1800-1820 period in mourning jewels solidified their necessity and identity within social status and culture. The British, French and…

Rings 28.04.2016
Gold and black enamel mourning ring with an octagonal swivel case containing, on one side, a gold crowned CR monogram on ground of white hair, under a crystal; the reverse with lock of grey hair and an inscription on the band 'ob 17 Nov, 1818 aet. 75'. Shank enamelled in black.

Royalty & Control in a Mourning Ring for a Queen, 1818

Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was born on the 19th of May 1744 and passed away on the 17th of November, 1818….

Brooches 17.04.2016
Hair-work brooch made of brown human hair. Shaped in a bow. The centre is bound round with gold wire and the ends are trimmed with gold tassels. There is a gold pin engraved with the birth and death dates of a 16-year-old. With a black card box with an engraved label.

A Hair Brooch for Sarah Beth Sparks, 1841

The beauty of mourning jewels is how immediate they are with their emotion. They don’t need to be expensive, elaborate…

Collecting 03.01.2016
Gold mourning ring enamelled in black and white. The shaped rectangular bezel, with a willow tree reserved on white enamel with a small glazed locket containing hair. Inscribed behind Anna/ Seward./ Ob. 25 March, 1809.' Aet. 66.

Mourning Jewellery in White

With its absence of light and its embodiment of the mystery of the unknown, black is the accepted primary colour…

Collecting 10.12.2015
Photograph of Queen Victoria (1819-1901) with Empress Frederick (1840-1901) both wearing black in mourning holding a photograph of Emperor Frederick III who died in June 1888

Mourning Jewels: How They Were Worn, Part 2

The wearing of 18th century mourning jewelry set the template for numerous revivals through to the 20th century. The 19th century was the catalyst…

Accessories 12.11.2015
Collection of mourning and sentimental jewels donated to Art of Mourning

A Collection & The Late 19th Century

Mourning jewellery holds a certain fascination in jewellery collecting, far more than any other modern style of jewel. They are…

Collecting 16.09.2015
Mourning ring; gold; marquise bezel studded round border with garnets in settings over bands of blue and white enamel; contains figure of Britannia(?) sitting on stern of vessel on which is a name, and wreathing the picture of an admiral; lion at her feet with paw on dead dove. No maker's mark.

Death at Sea: Mourning Jewellery and Nationalism

Being lost at sea strikes an image of loss and departure that evokes the very essence of sadness. In the very…

Memories 06.07.2015
A gold mourning brooch with black and white enamel frame set with circular miniature of Queen Victoria wearing the riband of the Order of the Garter

Mourning Fashion & Jewels During Victoria

Victoria’s reign from the 20th of June, 1837 to the 22nd of January, 1901 was the height and decline of the…

Collecting 23.03.2015
AN00435171_001_l

Mourning & Sentimental Jewels of the Georgian Era, An Introduction

“It is said to be peculiar to us, that our villages ape, so minutely, the fashions of our cities; that…

Uncategorized 16.03.2015

Hairwork, An Introduction

Often, the question is asked ‘how do I find more out about hairwork jewellery?’ Hair is one of the most…

Lockets 25.12.2014
faithhopecharity_pendant1

Faith, Hope and Charity

The allegory of faith, hope and charity are important symbols of the early modern period, becoming prominent from the late…

Rings 01.12.2014
forget-me-not ring, sentimental, blue enamel, cobalt, diamond, rose

Love, Flowers and Diamonds Create a Perfect Ring

Floral motifs in the late 18th century mark a change in symbolic and mourning practice. Even more than just for…

Collecting 24.11.2014
Richard Redgrave, 1846, "Throwing Off Her Weed"

A  Guide to the Stages of Mourning

Grief is automatically triggered by loss as part of our psychological construction. Mourning, in its most pure form, is a…

Is It, Or Isn't It? 20.11.2014
Skull Hairwork Ring Early 19th Century

A Mourning Tour: Anachronisms and a Mourning Ring

Anachronisms, or pieces from the times that don’t correlate to when they are meant to exist, are quite typical of…

Memories 17.11.2014
Brooch in gold and enamel in the form of an enamelled ER VII monogram with a red and green enamelled crown. The crown and the letter R are set with diamonds.

A Mourning Tour: Decline of Mourning

The decline and disappearance of the mourning industry does not have one simple answer. It is a mix of cultural…

Brooches 15.11.2014
Silesian iron wire-work brooch, c.1825

A Mourning Tour: Berlin Ironwork Jewellery

Giving something precious for an important cause is considered one of the most respectful ways to show honour and fidelity…

Lockets 13.11.2014
French St Esprit Necklace

A Mourning Tour: French Saint Esprit Dove Necklace

During the Rococo period of the 18th century, much of the most ornate and elaborate jewellery was created. Rococo as a…

Brooches 10.11.2014
Chalcedony_brooch_front

A Mourning Tour: Chalcedony and Sentimental Brooches in the 19th Century

The 19th century saw a massive swing towards sentimental jewellery, with an industry that could sustain itself through being popular…

Accessories 09.11.2014
Agate Hair Watch Key 19th Century Victorian

A Mourning Tour: Pocket Watch Key With A Hair Memento

Sentimental accessories show just how important the Romantic movement was within the fashion of 19th century society. Many peripheral accessories…

Brooches 08.11.2014
Black Enamel Mourning Brooch Gothic Revival In Memory Of

A Mourning Tour: The Mourning Brooch Standard, Early-Mid 19th Century

Mourning jewels are easy to identify for their purpose. It is within the sentiment of a jewel that one can…

Rings 07.11.2014
Drawing in pencil and watercolour on card

A Mourning Tour: 19th Century Jewellery Designs and Primary Sources

In the early modern era of jewellery design and manufacture, there is the need to create standardisation for artists to…

Brooches 05.11.2014
Miers Sentimental Shade Profile Silhouette Brooch

A Mourning Tour: Silhouettes & Shades From Miers & Field

Capturing the image of a loved one affordably and quickly is a relatively modern invention. Having the technology to produce…

Brooches 04.11.2014
REGARD pin with turquoise

A Mourning Tour: The Georgian “REGARD” Brooch

Jewellers and goldsmiths who had a close proximity to the crown benefitted from the attention and fame that their patronage…

Miniatures 02.11.2014
rest in peace 18th century urn mourning pendant

A Mourning Tour: “Rest In Peace” – An 18th Century Mourning Pendant

If ever a jewel was a contradiction in its title, it’s this mourning pendant. “Rest In Peace” is written modestly…

Brooches 25.10.2014
Butterfly mourning brooch, sardonyx cameo “Henry James Esqr died /13th Nov 1839 in his 80th Year”

Butterfly Symbols and 19th Century Jewellery

As with all symbols, there aren’t simple explanations for them when they transcend one culture or time. Organic symbols have…

Memories 15.09.2014
Brooch in gold and enamel in the form of an enamelled ER VII monogram with a red and green enamelled crown. The crown and the letter R are set with diamonds.

Decline of Mourning

The decline and disappearance of the mourning industry does not have one simple answer. It is a mix of cultural…

Rings 01.09.2014
Drawing in pencil and watercolour on card

19th Century Jewellery Designs and Primary Sources

In the early modern era of jewellery design and manufacture, there is the need to create standardisation for artists to…

Lockets 11.08.2014
French St Esprit Necklace

French Saint Esprit Dove Necklace

During the Rococo period of the 18th century, much of the most ornate and elaborate jewellery was created. Rococo as a…