How To Date Mid-Century Jewellery
To date Mid-Century jewellery it is best to start with the findings (clasps). These findings will help to narrow the time period which the item in question is from. Clip-on earrings were widely used during the fifties, as were push in box clasps for necklaces. Hallmarks or signatures on a piece can also yield a lot of information, which will help to narrow the date even further. After this the next step would be to examine the style of the item. Contemporary designs made from silver were a common theme of Mid-Century jewellery. These pieces were dominated by clean sharp lines and symmetrical patterns. Jewellery designs were more reserved than those in the previous Retro era, which favoured bold colourful displays. Motifs of animals, plants, flowers, butterflies and stars along with geometric patterns were a mainstay for 1950s jewellery. Enamel and semi-precious gems such as Lapis were widely used, giving a splash of colour in silver items such as butterflies and floral displays. Short choker length necklaces, usually single strands were the height of fashion. Costume jewellery also featured strongly in the fifties. With designers Trifari, Coro and Miriam Haskell being some of the better known. Trifari produced their iconic fruit and veg brooches during the 50s, along with their ever-popular crown shaped designs. Coro are remembered during the 50s for their stunning duette brooches, which are highly prized today. Miriam Haskell created beautiful filigree pieces with faux pearls and crystal beads. It was only in 1950 when her brother took over the company did her work begin to be signed. Complete matching sets of jewellery known as “parure” or sets of two matching items called “demi parure” were also a common feature in Mid-Century jewellery.
Illustrated below are some of the important dates of Mid-Century Jewellery.