Niello has such a wonderful look and feel to it, and contrary to popular thought, niello is actually not an enamelling technique, rather it is a blackening technique produced as an alloy of sulfur with copper, silver and lead. Once produced it is then used to fill the channels that have been previously engraved into the metal, and after a few more steps including polishing, the result is a wonderful contrast of colours in often a beautiful design as can be seen in this antique niello locket.
Dating from the later part of the 1800's, the design alone is so captivating and thanks to this design as well as the colours, will suit any outfit that it is worn on, as well as being perfect to wear for any occasion day or night.
Measuring 4.5cm across by 2.5cm wide, this is a wonderful brooch that will always be admired.
Out of stock
Antique niello brooch
Antique niello brooch made in the late Victorian era of the 1890's.
A brief article on niello.
What is niello?
Dating from around the 11th century, niello is blackening technique produced as an alloy of sulfur with copper, silver and lead. Once produced, it is used to fill designs that have been engraved into the surface of a metal. Usually done to silver, once applied to the metal and heated, the result is a black colouring that runs into the engraved channels. The excess niello is then removed by scraping until the filled channels are clearly visible. After this, the surface is then polished. The contrast of the black niello against the bright silver surface produces an attractive decorative effect. Regaining popularity during the Art Deco period of the 1920's to the 1940's, niello jewellery has a look that although first appearances will lead people to think it is enamel, it does have its own unique texture and feel.
Where can I buy an antique brooch?
At Kalmar Antiques in the Queen Victoria Building in Sydney. With a large range of antique and vintage brooches, there will always be one that is perfect for any occasion and outfit.
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