White Jewel

Pretty Belle Époque pendant/brooch in platinum with 1.60 ct diamonds, circa 1910

The fashion of the first decade after 1900 brought a completely new development in the history of jewellery. As in the years before, the jewels shone in bright white, made of platinum and diamond (Cf. "Learn more..."). But the forms now became lighter, airier, more delicate, even ethereal. In particular, the increasingly practiced use of platinum made it possible to create the most delicate ridges and structures, which had previously been technically impossible with gold or silver. Hardly thicker than the threads in the web of a silkworm, these designs stretch out like an airy mesh, whether as pendants, brooches or rings. And they always bear sparkling diamonds, which the light metal can make appear even larger than their shape suggests. Delicate brooches made of platinum and diamonds were a speciality of the years around 1910. They still surprise us today with the precision with which they are designed and inspire us with the delicacy of their designs - of which this example is a wonderful example. In this brooch, which can also be worn as a pendant thanks to an attachable eyelet, we see this principle of form executed with exemplary delicacy. Around a central old-cut diamond of beautiful quality, we see a multitude of fine bars, some of which expand into delicate diamond settings. A total of twenty-one old-cut diamonds of beautiful qualities are set together with sixteen diamond roses, which adorn the perfectly symmetrically constructed front of the jewel. The central section of the brooch features the five largest specimens in individual bezel settings, from which the structure opens out to be held together by a curved frame.... The piece of jewellery shows itself to be a child of the light and elegant fashion of the beginning of the century. Incredibly delicate and refined, the goldsmith has brought the platinum here to a design that combines a total of 1.60 ct of diamonds. Whether worn as a brooch or a pendant, the jewel draws the eye - and the closer you look, the more admirable the jewel itself becomes. Beautiful in its design, precise in its execution and select in its material, it displays timeless elegance, ready to adorn many more generations to come. Cf. with numerous examples of jewellery of this type: David Bennet and Daniela Mascetti: Understanding Jewellery, Woodbridge 2010, p. 82, p. 271ff.

The Belle Époque produced jewellery of such precision craftsmanship as had hardly been seen before. Narrow sawn shadow joints, the most delicate mille handles - all this was made possible by the application of a thin layer of platinum on gold, because the hard, white material made the gold harder and made such techniques possible in the first place. Pure white materials - diamonds, pearls and platinum - were also particularly in demand, and the artistic surface treatment made the jewellery seem to consist entirely of light and shadow.

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You can rely on our years of experience in the trade and our expertise as a professional art historians for reviews of the antique jewellery. As a member of various trader organisations and the British Society of Jewellery Historians, we remain committed to the highest possible degree of accuracy. In our descriptions, we always also indicate any signs of age and defects and never hide them in our photos – this saves you from any unpleasant surprises when your package arrives.

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We want you to be 100% satisfied! That’s why we examine, describe and photograph all our jewellery with the utmost care.

If for any reason you are still not satisfied, contact us and we will find a mutual solution immediately. Regardless, you can return any item within 30 days and we will refund you the full purchase price.