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A rectangular diamond cut with four corners that create a rectangle or four-sided polygon.


The connector at the top of a pendant, which allows the pendant to hang from a chain or jump ring


A synthetic material, patented in 1909. Created by Leo Baekeland and patented in 1909, bakelite is a castable and fire-resistant plastic. Originally used for manufacturing purposes, early 20th century jewelers began to realize it as a great material for making inexpensive jewelry such as bracelets, rings, and pins. This material became especially popular in the jewelry industry during the Great Depression, both because of its affordability and the wide variety of bakelite colors that were introduced during that time period. Though it was an affordable material, bakelite was also used during the Great Depression by high-end jewelers including Coco Chanel. Today, authentic bakelite is a collectible item, with jewelry collectors purchasing pieces for thousands of dollars.


A traditionally rigid, non-flexible bracelet


This jewelry style is marked by pieces that are bold, ornate, and heavy-looking. The word Baroque refers to the time period between 1600 and 1775. During these times, jewelers moved away from creating jewelry pieces fashioned with colored enamel and began creating more unique masterpieces using such materials as pearls and boldly-colored gemstones. Jewelers’ skills at cutting gemstones greatly improved during the Baroque time period, which can be witnessed by viewing many authentic pieces from the Baroque time period that remain today. Popular bold jewelry pieces worn during this era in time included large necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets, and tiaras. As explorers were coming back from far-off lands and returning with flowers from these new destinations, Baroque jewelers were influenced by their findings. As such, many Baroque jewelry pieces feature exotic gold and silver flowers that captured the hearts and imaginations of the Europeans who proudly adorned themselves with these creations.


This enameling technique, which translates to “shallow cut,” allows jewelers to create pieces in which the colored enamel position of the jewelry item is at a low-relief pattern in metal, typically gold or silver. The process begins with a jeweler tracing the enamel design on the gold or silver piece of jewelry. Then, the jeweler uses a tool, such as a tracer, to remove the inner area of metal, creating a recessed area in which to place the enamel. Typically, different depths in the metal are chiseled out so that the enamel placed in it will shine through with varying degrees of light and color. With basse-taille, the height of the enamel is at a lower point than the height of metal that surrounds it. Additionally, enamel is added to basse-taille jewelry’s metal position. This allows for a stunning light show and creates a unique and beautiful artistic effect. Originating in Italy during Medieval Ages, the process of basse-taille again became popular in 17th century Europe.


Small, feather-like cracks along the girdle of a diamond


This term is the French history equivalent of the British Edwardian period. Ranging from 1880 to the beginning of World War I in 1914, Belle Époque jewelry was created at a time of increasing wealth and a flourishing of the arts. Jewelry pieces created during this period in French history include both machine-made and handcrafted items. Pearls were very popular in Belle Époque pieces, including freshwater pearls, saltwater pearls, and the less expensive cultured pearls. Many Belle Époque pieces represent the natural environment, so it's common to find pieces of jewelry from this time period that feature designs of birds, insects, and other creatures. Colorful elements were also popular during this time period to bring these naturalistic designs to life, so you’ll find many Belle Époque jewelry pieces with elements including amethysts, amber, aquamarine, chrysoberyl, crystal glass, demantoid garnet, horn, malachite, moonstone, opal, peridot, ruby, sapphire, tortoiseshell, and tourmaline. Platinum is a popular metal in Belle Époque jewelry, particularly during its Arts & Crafts period.


Cast iron jewelry, worked into delicate openwork patterns, and made in Berlin during the first half of the nineteenth century


A mineral consisting of a silicate of beryllium and aluminum of great hardness that occurs in colorless hexagonal prisms when pure and in various colors such as: green, blue, yellow, or pink, when not pure


A setting for a stone, that has a collar instead of prongs, in order to secure the stone


The term Bijouterie is a French word that refers to the art of working with gold and enamel. Both of these jewelry mediums have been popular for centuries. In modern history, gold became an extremely sought-after metal for jewelry pieces in the 19th century. During the Georgian and Victorian eras, it was very popular for gold jewelry pieces to be ornamentally decorated with black enamel. Like gold, enamel jewelry has been popular for centuries as well, starting as far back as the 3rd century, when it was commonly used in the Eastern Roman Empire as well as in the Celtic regions of Gaul and Britain. Working with gold to create jewelry is a delicate process, which requires the uses of waxes, molds, fine razors to cut shapes, and high-temperature heating to melt gold and pour it into the desired molds. Likewise, using enamel with gold is a complicated process. The enamel begins as a finely powdered substance, similar to the consistency of baby powder. It is fused with its gold pieces by heating it to extremely high temperatures between 1,380 to 1,560 ℉.


A flaw, spot, or scratch on the surface of a gemstone


An irregularly shaped and hollow pearl, cut from the shell of an oyster


A topaz that is light brown or colorless when mined, which turns a vivid blue when exposed to heat


Bog oak is a type of wood that has been preserved over thousands of years in Irish bogs. This type of wood can also be found in Scotland and England. Bog oak is hard enough to be carved and worn as jewelry. During the late Victorian Era from 1860 to 1890, bog oak jewelry was a popular jewelry medium to be used in mourning jewelry. Many bog oak mourning jewelry pieces included sentimental details of the person who was being mourned, including initials or dates of birth and death that were carved into the pieces. Bog oak jewelry also became popular as everyday jewelry during the late Victorian Era because of its fashionable, dark hues.


A finding that is entirely or partially hollow, drawn back on an internal spring, which connects rings


A Victorian style of chain that is made in solid gold or sterling silver, in which each link is a rectangular folded piece of metal resembling a book


A stone, enclosed in a box-shaped setting with metal edges that are pressed down to hold the stone in place


An ornamental band or chain worn around the wrist


A jewelry design element in which multiple strands of an often precious metal appear to be woven together


An alloy made up of roughly half copper and half zinc, which has a nice yellow color


The intensity and amount of light reflecting from inside a diamond or gemstone


Brilliant cut is the standard cut style for diamonds and consists of a total of 58 facets: 1 table, 8 bezel facets, 8 star facets, 16 upper-girdle facets on the crown, 8 pavilion facets, 16 lower-girdle facets and usually a culet on the pavilion or base


A very dense, heavy alloy of 60% Copper and 40% Tin


This jewelry piece is typically a large pin that is fastened to a blouse, a hat, a jacket or a handbag, but can also be hung as a pendant (see link). Brooches have been popular pieces of jewelry in several eras, and are actually one of the first known accessories crafted by ancient artisans. Originally, these brooches were fashioned with precious stones, and metals like gold and later silver. During the age of kingdoms and controversial coups, noblewomen would strategically choose and place brooches, often depicting bows, angels, flowers, and insects like butterflies, to discreetly signal coded messages to one another about their position on the palace’s affairs. Today, brooches are still fashionable but are less a form of secret communication and more of a fashion statement. Brooches are now highly regarded as a popular form of expression for both men and women.


A texturing technique used on metals, where a series of tiny parallel lines are scratched onto the surface with a wire brush of polishing tool


A style of stone cutting, where the top of the gemstone is a dome (en cabochon) and the pavilion is faceted

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