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Fashion Jewelry Down the Ages

Sep 11, 2008
Fashion jewelry is not a concept that was born in modern times contrary to what a lot of people might think. It existed way back, dating as far back to the 1700's. In those days it used to be referred to as costume jewelry. Costume and fashion jewelry are essentially the same thing. They were used to accessorize certain outfits and were not meant to last long periods of times. Here a peek at what fashion jewelry looked like over the last couple of centuries.

The 1700s - duplications of the fine jewelry of the rich

The fashion jewelry that was perhaps the most common in the 1700s was duplicates of the fine jewelry that the rich possessed. The rich duplicated their fine jewelry for a number of reasons. These fashion jewelry items and were often made out of cheap metal with glass stones that were pasted on it.

The 1800s - inventive middle class jewelry

By the middle of the 1800s, the middle class had grown in substantial numbers and jewelry began to be manufactured at different levels to cater to all strata's of society. While fine jewelry from precious metal and stone was still being made, fashion jewelry was also being made. This jewelry was generally made of an inexpensive base metal and then covered with a layer of rolled gold. Semi precious stones like corals, pearls, amethysts etc would be used. These brought down the cost of the jewelry considerably yet kept it looking classy. There was also the even cheaper variety which was base metal that looked like gold with glass stones. This was fashion jewelry that was affordable to everybody.

The 1900's - stylish make believes

In the 1900s fashion jewelry went through distinct phases and it is because of this that it is fairly easy to distinguish the era from which a particular piece came from. Between 1910 and 1930 silver was the in color for metal. Most of the jewelry from this period was set in base metals that were colored to look silver. In the 1930s rhinestones became a popular material that was being used in fashion jewelry in Europe. These stones however were not freely available in America till the 1940s and therefore the rhinestone jewelry that was found in America prior to the 1940s was made up of small clusters of stones rather that a big single piece.

The present times - modern and trendy?

The fashion jewelry available today is not very different from what was used in the years that have gone by. The concept is still the same - inexpensive fun jewelry to accessorize an outfit. In fact while fashion jewelry today is modern, trendy & stylish, there is also a segment that is reverting to antique and vintage styles. These pieces may not be as heavy as their original counter part, but if they are worn right they make excellent fashion statements and are most definitely conversation starters! So go ahead, have fun accessorizing with fashion jewelry and dress to turn heads.
About the Author
Queen Bee Jewelry offers a great selection of Women's Jewelry including Fashion Jewelry & Sterling Silver Jewelry. Visit us on the web at http://www.queenbjewelry.com for all your Fashion Jewelry needs.
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