Story of jewellery- From Fish Bones to Polished State of Art
Jewellery (derived from the old French word jouel) everyone loves. Can you find someone, in your vicinity, who doesn’t like Jewellery? I am not sure, you can. It doesn’t matter the base or the metal of jewellery, and we only talk about jewellery. Every piece of jewellery, be it a diamond ring, designer earring,14kt gold pendants, quality certified bracelet, any piece you pick for yourself, defines who you are. Accessories are part of your entire wardrobe. Without the right accessories, your fashion game might just topple you over.
The trail of jewellery can be traced back 25,000 years ago. Even before the discovery of cloth, our ancestors did decorate their bodies with various ornaments, made from various elements depending on their place of habitats. La marque-M’s Ocean collection is inspired from the history of people residing near Oceans,who made their ornaments from a variety of shells, fish teeth, colored pebbles, and fish bones, while inhabitants of inland had ornaments made from animals’ bones, teeth, horns, etc.
The human race is one of the most beautifully crafted creatures of god. We need to have a good soul to beautify our essence of being a human. But in the world of glitter and glamour, ostentation has become a mandate. Jewellery establishes a symbol of acceptance, richness, status, rank, and authority. At some time, in Europe, jewellery was adorned by only high-ranking church officials and wealthy people, thus symbolizing wealth. Symbolizing human connection is also one chore, which has been effectively done by wedding rings. Ornaments are celebrated artifacts, we wear them at festivals, on family occasions, and so on and so forth. Jewellery can be seen as a synonym of happiness.
As we left our footprints in history and continued our journey to the new world every day, the universe has changed its course. From joint family to nuclear family, from the only wired telephone in the house to a mobile phone in the hands of every individual, everything has changed with time, with new needs and lifestyles and standards. Following the path of change, styling, designing, the process of making jewellery has also changed with time. The discovery of various metals and techniques to work on them has played a major in the development of jewellery.
Jewellery for status conscious society
Jewellery of 1200BC -1500BC, Medieval Jewellery is worn around the region of Europe, symbolizing hierarchical and status-conscious society. People of higher ranks mostly adorn jewellery with the base of gold and high-value gemstones embossed in them. People from the lower ranks of the society also wore jewellery, but the major difference stood at the base metal being used. Copper, Brass were the metals used for manufacturing ornaments worn by the people from the lower ranks of society.
Emergence of art of enameling and gemstones.
As we move forward towards the period of Renaissance, Jewellery became more elaborated with enameling and gemstones more finely polished and cut than before were being used. The use of color stone and an array of colors in the form of enamel were highlights of jewellery. Designs of this era were mostly inspired by mythological figures and scenes.
Time to feel royal with Pearls.
Moving towards the age of the modern era came the 17th century. The era lost the essence of colored stone but tasted the richness and royalty of Pearl, in particular, the “Baroque Pearl.” Floral designs bows were the favorite design motifs of the time. The technique of Enameling(used in waves of ocean diamond bracelet) advanced it way, with the discovery of opaque enamel. However, advancements in techniques of cutting stones, made gemstones sparkled.
Diamonds are forever to shine
The 18th century was lit by the sparkle of the diamond. Designs of this century were dominated by the shine of Diamonds. Silver became the favorite metal for jewellery to amplify the shine of diamonds and was the choice of riches.
Era to focus on craftsmanship
The rise of industrialization and major shifts in society took place in the 19th century. But jewellery was intact with its value and worth. However, designing of this century mostly took reference from the past era. Jewel smiths were inspired by the medieval and Renaissance period. Simple and elegant designs of the 18th century took a step back and more complex designs inspired by nature were making their way. Despite the rise in machine-made products, the jewellery industry kept its focus on handcrafting jewels to maintain the soul of workmanship.
With continuous changes in style, designing, improvement in techniques to make the metal work came 1900. Designs were glamorous and innovative. Sharp geometric shapes made their way to the jewellery designs describing the era of machines and industries. Yellow metal i.e., gold became a new favorite, as it became cheaper than Platinum. This trend was continuing even in the 2000s.
Took cue from past, but stay ahead
We are in the year 2021, Gold prices stand at an all-time high near Rs50,000, but still, everyone is keen to buy gold ornaments. The only reason being the shine of gold never fades. Taking a look at the designs, now we prefer minimalistic designs, which can be worn anywhere, anytime. Gold to date is a symbol of richness, but adding diamonds to it makes it luxurious. However, we can see the return of our historic designs in silver ornaments. Elaborated oversized designs crafted with hands in silver have made their way even in this era.
So, fashion never goes out of fashion, and it does find its way back.