Bracelets of the Art Deco Era

Bracelets of the Art Deco Era

If you're anything like me, you're fascinated by the bold designs that defined the Art Deco era, especially when it comes to the stunning variety of styles that emerged during this influencial period. Today, we'll focus on one specific type of jewelry that truly encapsulates the spirit of the Roaring Twenties: bracelets.

Art Deco 14K White Gold, Diamond, and Sapphire Filigree Bracelet

Originating in the 1920s and reaching its peak in the 1930s, Art Deco was more than just a design trend—it was a cultural movement. Characterized by its emphasis on geometric patterns, vibrant colors, and an overarching sense of modernity, Art Deco reflected the rapid industrialization and technological advancements of the time. Think of it as the rebellious younger sibling of the more ornate and flowery Art Nouveau movement.

The Art Deco period was a time of groundbreaking innovation, leading to several developments in jewelry design, including the following bracelet styles:

The Elegant Line Bracelet

The straight line bracelet became a quintessential piece in the Art deco jewelry box. These bracelets, similar to today's 'tennis' bracelets, epitomize the refined aesthetic of the 1920s and 1930s. Simple yet sophisticated, it was and still remains the perfect accessory for those who want a bit of glamour without going over the top.

Art Deco Platinum and Diamond Line Bracelets

As the name suggests, these bracelets featured a straight line of gemstones, usually diamonds. Most were set in platinum and, despite their seemingly rigid appearance, these bracelets were designed to move gracefully with the wearer.

Oversized & Geometric

If there's one thing the Art Deco era knew how to do, it was making a bold statement with large diamond bracelets. These pieces were designed to showcase the luxury of the time, often becoming the centerpiece of an ensemble.

Art Deco Platinum Diamond and Emerald Bracelet

Featuring elaborate patterns and multiple rows of diamonds and gemstones, these bracelets were all about making a statement. Platinum was commonly used, providing a bright and neutral backdrop that highlighted the diamonds' fire and sparkle.

Van Cleef & Arpels | Mystery-Set Ruby and Diamond Bracelet, Source - Sotheby's

The Innovation of Mystery Setting

One of the most significant innovations in jewelry design during the Art Deco era was the development of the mystery setting, a technique perfected by French jeweler Van Cleef and Arpels in the late 1920s. This method involved setting gemstones in such a way that no metal was visible from the front, creating the illusion of a seamless, uinterrupted surface of gems. The mystery setting was revolutionary, allowing for a more fluid and modern aesthetic that perfectly complemented the geometric and linear motifs of the Art Deco period. 

Vibrant Pops of Color

While diamonds were a staple of Art Deco jewelry, the era was also known for its vibrant use of color. Bracelets featuring bold and striking hues became popular - emeralds, sapphires, rubies, and even gemstones like onyx and turquoise were commonly used.

Designers loved to pair vibrant colors with black and white elements. The use of color wasn't random; gemstones were arranged in geometric patterns or motifs inspired by nature and art.

Cartier Colored Stone and Diamond 'Tutti Frutti' Bracelet, France, Source - Sotheby's

A standout piece in this category is the 'Tutti Frutti' bracelet by Cartier. This iconic design combined carved emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and diamonds in a colorful and exuberant mix that was whimsical yet luxurious. The bracelet recently fetched a record-breaking price of $1.3 million at Sotheby's auction.

Feminine Filigree Bracelets

For those who appreciate delicate and detailed craftsmanship, filigree bracelets from the Art Deco period are a true delight. These bracelets showcased the technical skill of jewelers from this golden age of design.

Filigree involves twisting fine threads of metal into intricate designs, often creating lace-like patterns. Common motifs included geometric shapes, flowers, and vines.

Art Deco 14k White Gold and Synthetic Sapphire Filigree Bracelet

From the timeless elegance of the straight line bracelet to the bold statement of large diamond pieces, these bracelets highlight the creativity of an era that continues to inspire us today. Whether you're a seasoned collector or a newcomer to the world of antique jewelry, there's something undeniably enchanting about the patterns, colors, and materials that define Art Deco jewelry design.

Shop Art Deco Jewelry
As we've seen, these bracelets are not only beautiful accessories; they're pieces of history, each with its own story and significance. So, the next time you don a piece of Art Deco jewelry, remember that you're embracing a rich legacy of art, culture, and craftsmanship that has stood the test of time.