Precious contrasts

Luxurious Art Deco brooch with diamonds & onyx in platinum, around 1930

Luxurious jewellery made of white precious metal - as familiar as it is to us today, the road to it was a long one. In the late 19th century, only silver was known, but it was tarnishing and could not be worked as finely as gold. Early white gold, patented in the 1910s, was still slightly yellowish. Finally, platinum was already being processed around 1900 as a fine overlay on gold, but it was still too expensive to be used on a large scale for solid pieces. Just after the October Revolution in Russia in 1917, Russian deposits fell away, and in conjunction with the hardships of the First World War, the price of platinum briefly rose to five times the price of gold. Only a few, particularly luxurious special orders were made of massive platinum. However, the desire for white jewellery was still unbroken. For this reason, it was something of a sensation in jewellery circles worldwide when further platinum deposits were discovered in the Transvaal in South Africa in 1924. The US trade magazine "The Jeweler's Circular", for example, devoted a two-page article to this discovery in May 1924 (H. 88, May-Jul. 1924, p. 63ff.). And indeed: the new deposits caused the price of platinum to fall so sharply by 1926 that by 1930 it was only one and a half times the price of gold! At last the way was cleared for precious, solid platinum jewellery. The present brooch in platinum, which holds almost one and a half carats of diamonds, also dates to this period. It derives its charm from the contrast of the non-colours black and white, which results on the one hand from the combination of onyx and diamonds and on the other hand from the structuring of the platinum, which thus seems to dissolve into light and shadow. The composition unfolds geometrically to the left and right along the central half-carat in the old cut. A piece of jewellery from the heyday of Art Deco that is typical of the period in many respects!

We want you to be 100% satisfied! For that reason, we examine, describe and photograph all of our jewellery with the utmost care.

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.

Should you for some reason not be satisfied, please don’t hesitate to contact us so that we can begin to find a solution together. In any case, you can return any article within 30 days and we will refund the full purchase price.


OUR PROMISE

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.

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