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…

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…

Hairwork 11.11.2014
Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Serpent Clasp Heart

A Mourning Tour: The Art of Hairwork Collection

The Art of Hairwork was originally a series of articles written in 2012 as the format of Art of Mourning…

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 06.11.2014
Mourning Ring, 18ct Gold and Enamel, Hallmarked London 18ct Gold Dated 1827 inscribed with "Wm (William) Wrightson ob 26 Dec. 1827 At 75"

A Mourning Tour: In Memoriam / In Memory Of Rings, 19th Century

Black enamel bands are the most recognised of mourning jewels, being placed in very visible positions for others to see,…

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…

Lockets 23.06.2014
Victorian Locket Pendant Silver Enamel Monogram

Onyx and Silver ‘IMO’ Victorian Hairwork Pendant

The second half of the 19th century saw the combination of mainstream fashion and mourning fashion. High mortality rates and…

Art 16.06.2014
French Hair Mourning Art from the 19th Century

French Hair Art & The Industry of Mourning

“Hair is at once the most delicate and lasting of our materials and survives us like love. It is so…

Hairwork 24.02.2014
Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Serpent Clasp Heart

The Art of Hairwork Collection

The Art of Hairwork was originally a series of articles written in 2012 as the format of Art of Mourning…

Rings 16.09.2013
Mourning Ring, 18ct Gold and Enamel, Hallmarked London 18ct Gold Dated 1827 inscribed with "Wm (William) Wrightson ob 26 Dec. 1827 At 75"

In Memoriam / In Memory Of Rings, 19th Century

Black enamel bands are the most recognised of mourning jewels, being placed in very visible positions for others to see,…

Brooches 26.08.2013
Black Enamel Mourning Brooch Gothic Revival In Memory Of

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 13.03.2013
Agate Swivel Ring

A Very Sentimental Locket Swivel Ring, 19th Century

Even the simplest of designs from the early 19th century show a multitude of burgeoning ideas and new perceptions about…

Lockets 04.03.2013
Edwardian Heart-Shaped Locket

Post-Victorian Lockets and Pendants

The decline of the mourning industry was not exclusively ‘mourning’ related, but an actual change in fashion and social taste….

Lockets 01.03.2013
In Memory Of Locket Victorian

‘In Memory Of’ – A Timeless Dedication For A Memorial Locket

‘In Memory Of’. Very few sentiments in mourning jewellery resonate so strongly over such a long period of time and…

Lockets 27.02.2013
1870 Jet Mourning Pendant

Jet and Hairwork Mourning Pendant, 1870

As a popular material for the purposes of fashion, jet was held in high regard during the 1860s-1890s. Why this…

Lockets 25.02.2013
Jet Pearl Locket

Late Victorian Pearl Cross/Sheaf Locket

Vulcanite, Jet and the materials to represent the same styles are many of the most misinterpreted in mourning and sentimental…

Lockets 22.02.2013
Swiss Hairwork Locket

Swiss Hairwork Locket, Mid 19th Century

The Swiss and German hairworking industries produced remarkable three dimensional hairwork and memorial art, as the above example shows. From…

Lockets 20.02.2013
Locket Miniature Black Enamel

Miniatures, Lockets and The Rise of Photography

Since the 1840s, photography had changed the landscape of sentimental jewels. Many factors contributed to this, involving improvements in technology…

Lockets 18.02.2013
Turquoise Forget-Me-Not Locket with Hairwork

Turquoise Forget-Me-Not Locket with Hairwork

Many facets make this piece truly wonderful for its time. The mid to late 19th century had embraced the meaning…

Lockets 15.02.2013
1849 Locket

“My Olive Branches” Twisted Hairwork Locket, 1849

Post 1859, many of the jewels that are commonly found in antique stores and fairs had their origin. This is…

Lockets 11.02.2013
Remember Pendant with Pearls

Seed Pearl and Gold Filigree ‘Remember’ Pendant

Jewellery and design are both a dance in the art of subtlety. Symbolism is often the outcome of this, with…

Lockets 08.02.2013
Gothic Revival Locket Diamond Forget Me Not

Gothic Revival Meets Rococo Revival in this Stunning Locket, 1834

By 1834, all the elements of the Gothic Revival had entered mainstream fashion and was directly responsible for jewels like…

Lockets 06.02.2013
Gothic Revival Small Pendant

Small 1830s Mourning Pendant with Hairwork

Here, we see the Gothic Revival and its impact on pendants and lockets. The most important aspect of this is…

Miniatures 14.11.2012
Photograph and Miniature Compact

Photograph and Hairwork Compact

Compacts in velvet or leather cases took the place for a transportable memento, which has its roots based in the…

Accessories 29.10.2012
Mourning Stickpin

Memorial Stickpin With Gothic Revival Flair

Stick pins can be dated to the latter half of the 17th Century and were a common accessory, but are…

Accessories 22.10.2012
Onyx Earrings

Progressive Style Onyx Earrings

Very Edwardian in style, these earrings show delicate forget-me-nots with pearls, resting on onyx. Onyx became a popular feature, taking…

Accessories 19.10.2012
Jet Earrings

Late 19th Century Jet Earrings

Catalogues of the 19th century are one of the most invaluable ways of finding out about the date of a…

Bracelets 15.10.2012
Pressed Horn Bracelet

Pressed Horn Forget-Me-Not Bracelet

This pressed horn example is surrounded by the forget-me-not pattern, and is showing signs of discolouration and chipping. The forget-me-nots…

Accessories 12.10.2012
Bracelet Mourning Set

Bracelets and Mourning Sets

Bracelets complete an appropriate set of jewellery. The demi-parure to the left is an excellent example of its time. Circa…

Bracelets 10.10.2012
Turquoise Hairwork Bracelet

Turquoise Hairwork Bracelet

Depending on the weave, hairwork can stretch to the size of the wearer. Turquoise beads and late 19th Century etching…