Pique jewellery was the technique of inlaying tortoiseshell with extremely intricate and beautiful designs with gold and silver, and here are a very rare pair of antique pique earrings made with a triple hoop design.
Click here to read a brief article on pique jewellery: https://www.kalmarantiques.com.au/articles/history-of-pique-jewellery/
Dating from the 1870's, the incredible detail in the earrings is simply breathtaking and will amaze so many when they discover that they are over 150 years old and sill in superb condition. The workmanship is a true testament to the quality of jewellery made during this wonderful era, well before any modern equipment that is available today.
With each circular section able to move and sway independently, these earrings will be the perfect pair to wear to any occasion and always stand out from the crowd.
Measuring 24.8mm wide by 48.5mm to the very top of the shepherd hooks, these earrings are as beautiful today as when they were made.
Antique triple hoop pique earrings dating from the 1870's
Pique jewellery is a style and type of jewellery all unto itself and 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 and 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, 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 and the 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 especially 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, meaning that pique jewellery will become harder and harder to find as the years go by.
Click here to see more antique earrings that is currently in store:
Click here to see more antique pique jewellery that is currently in store:
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