Retro 1940s Jewellery and Retro Costume Jewellery

1940's Jewellery

1940s Retro BroochDue to restrictions on raw materials during World War II, materials such as Lucite and Bakelite really came into their own on the costume jewellery front. The most notable change was the substitution of Sterling Silver for various base metals.

In 1942, sterling silver was the only precious metal that was allowed for costume jewellery and in American various pieces of jewellery were made of vermeil (gold plated over Sterling Silver). Glamorous cocktail costume jewellery was very popular during this period as it was a way women could cheer up the austere wartime look and it became so popular in American that sales of cocktail jewellery had tripled by 1945.

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1940's Jewellery: Through Post War Austerity

1940s Pink Lucite EarringsWith the advent of Dior's revolutionary New Look in 1947, this offered a welcome return to luxury and feminism after the gloomy austere period of the Second World War. Costume jewellery trends and designs were opulent, very well made, feminine and very very showy with big bold "conversation statement pieces". Large, vibrant and colourful diamante necklaces, bracelets, brooches, earrings were of the trend, the more opulent the better!

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