Jewelry Trends Through the Ages

Jewelry Trends Through the Ages Jewelry has been around since before the history books were being written. There have even been cave drawings found that depict items wrapped around necks and wrists of the people. Trends in jewelry have changed drastically throughout the centuries and styles have developed in line with the times. Materials have also changed with different cultures using various metals and stones to create their masterpieces. The first creation of jewelry as we know it today was created by the ancient Egyptians. When mummies were pulled from the pyramids, especially the likes of King Tut, the array of priceless jewelry was astonishing. There were gold necklaces, pendants, bangles and collars. Egyptians were very fond of big, bulky jewelry embellished with natural stones and symbols of their culture. Egyptian royalty have been thought to wear lavish collar-like necklaces, armbands, rings – just about anything they could fit on their body at one time to make sure their status was clear. By the time of the ancient Greeks, tastes in jewelry had changed dramatically. The Greeks preferred more delicate pieces than the heavy, chunky jewelry of the Egyptians. The people of Greece shaped their metals into shapes that related to their cultural and spiritual beliefs, often times associated with nature like flowers and insects. Precious gemstones were also used by the Greeks. They enjoyed using stones like emeralds, amethyst and pearls. Their clothing was very light and airy and their accessories matched that style. Women wore very delicate, feminine pieces. During the Renaissance times of old England, pearls really were making their mark. Pearls were a symbol of high royalty and wealth and only those in high society wore them. Women would don themselves from head to toe in pearls. Queen Elizabeth was known for her passion for pearls and was often painted wearing them. Jewelry in this time was very bold and flashy. Everything during this period in history was a status symbol and there was no better way to show that status than through jewelry. Once the early 20th century rolled around, high fashion designers like Coco Chanel and Kokichi Mikimoto were making their mark on the jewelry world. During these fun, carefree times, costume jewelry was very popular. Many women mixed their real, valuable jewelry with their cheaper baubles. In the 1920’s, the flappers were known for wearing their long strands of pearls, brooches and feathers. Once World War II came around, popularity of jewelry dropped because metal was rationed out for use in weapons and ammunition. Once the war was over, jewelry came back with a vengeance. Precious metals like golds and silvers soared in popularity and sparkling gemstones were all the rage. Even the sweet housewives of the 1950’s were often depicted wearing their strands of pearls with their aprons. These were the decades when celebrity influence really began. Celebrities on the red carpets at awards shows had a huge influence on jewelry fashion trends. The same is true today, no matter how the trends change celebrities are always at the helm. To stay on the cutting edge of fashion, all we have to do is turn to the red carpets.

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