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Home / 2023 - 2024 Catalogue / Antique pique pendant with a bird of paradise

Antique pique pendant with a bird of paradise

This antique pique pendant is so beautiful for not only the material in which it is made from, but also the gorgeous bird of paradise on the front that adds to the charm even more.

Pique jewellery is such an amazing material and is unlike anything else, and click here to read a brief article on pique jewellery: https://www.kalmarantiques.com.au/articles/history-of-pique-jewellery/

Dating from the 1880's Victorian era, often both flora and fauna played a big part in the design of jewellery with the symbolism attached to it. And for centuries the beautiful bird of paradise has been associated with love and faithfulness, making this pique pendant even more charming.

Made in a romantic heart shape that measures 19.3mm by 20.8mm to the top, this really is a wonderful example of an antique pendant that can so easily be dressed up or down depending on the occasion, and will always make such a wonderful talking piece that will always be admired.


Stock# ET1295

Circa: 1880



Out of stock


Antique pique pendant

Antique pique pendant with a bird of paradise on the front.

What is pique jewellery?

A brief history on pique jewellery:

Pique jewellery is a style and type of jewellery all unto itself. It is one that cannot be reproduced today and is so unique and spectacular. Made most popular during the Victorian era, it can be found as far back as the 18th Century. Pique was popular throughout most parts of Europe but mostly in Italy and England.

Pique (pronounced pee-kay) is gold or silver, or sometimes a combination of both, inlayed into another material. Quite often the material was tortoiseshell (from the Hawksbill tortoise which was also used for the making of other tortoiseshell material such as boxes etc) and sometimes even from elephant ivory.

The tortoiseshell seemed to be the most popular. this was probably because of its light weight and being easy to mould into other shapes. Tortoiseshell is a natural thermoplastic , meaning that it is quite malleable when heated/warmed. Very fine gold or silver would be fashioned into either fine rod or leaf designs. These were then pressed into the already warmed tortoiseshell. After the gold and silver was set, the shell was left to cool down which would then contract to hold the metal in place.

Prior to 1870, the metals were cut by hand allowing for very fine and intricate detail then after 1870, machines started to do the work resulting in more straight and angular designs. The attention to detail no matter the age is always something that never ceases to amaze people. More so when you consider that these pieces were often made well over 140 years ago and still look superb today.

Pique jewellery can most commonly be found in earrings and pendants, and the designs and colouring are amazing to admire.

This form of jewellery making is now a lost art as both the elephant and Hawksbill turtle are protected species. This of course means that pique jewellery will become harder and harder to find as the years go by.

In antique jewellery and design both flora and fauna played a big part in the design with the symbolism attached to it. And for centuries the beautiful bird of paradise has been associated with love and faithfulness.

Click here to see more antique necklaces and pendants that are currently instore:


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Kalmar Antiques 2022 - 2023 Annual Catalogue

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