The vintage lover’s guide to the perfect ring
If you’re an old soul with a love of swing music, opulent jewellery, Victorian-inspired buffets or monochrome print, why not bring a touch of retro to the biggest event of your life – your wedding? This is the perfect time to do exactly what you and your partner want so if you’d much rather be twirling in a flapper dress than tapping on an iPad how about arranging a vintage ceremony?
There are many things you can do to capture the excitement and awe from times gone by such as opting for an Audrey Hepburn style wedding frock or hosting a dapper 19th century feast, but the first thing on your list should be choosing (or hinting at getting) the perfect ring from the likes of 77 Diamonds. An antique rock will add shine to any big day, so here’s a guide to vintage rings.
What makes a ring vintage?
When you hear the term ‘vintage’ you might think of coloured jewels, extravagant designs and iconic symbols such as scorpions and serpents, but what exactly gives accessories this label? Well, the word ‘vintage’ is used to describe both genuine old-fashioned items that are still in existence as well as reproductions of original items and new products that are designed in a style that was popular in a particular era. The term vintage is commonly associated with the retro clothing revival (1920s to 1980s) but when used to describe jewellery it usually refers to older styles of jewellery inspired by Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco styles.
Vintage jewellery is extremely interesting as it has changed and adapted over the years having been influenced by many significant periods in history. The Victorians, for instance, were fascinated by the ancient world and based many of their jewellery designs on treasures discovered in Egypt, Greece and Asia. A good example of Victorian reproduction jewellery is the engagement ring of Queen Victoria that featured a very impressive serpent design with an emerald-set head. While the snake is the Roman symbol for love and a powerful image which holds significant importance in many countries, the emerald was the Queen’s birthstone incorporating history with romance.
When Edward VII came to the thrown in 1901, trading and manufacturing made the United Kingdom one of the most powerful nations in the world. A time of peace and plenty, there were no severe depressions and with Edward being quite the fashionista and leading extremely image-conscious elite, jewellery making soared. Not only did expensive-looking accessories, featuring large jewels and extravagant designs, become popular, platinum was one of the most favoured metals used for diamond rings for the rich and wealthy. Bigger really was better back in the day, so if you want to stand out from the crowd perhaps follow the Edwardian’s lead.
If you love geometric patterns, clean cut lines, crisp angles, bright colours and bold shapes, Art Deco inspired jewellery might be right up your street. The 1920s and 30s were a particularly creative period for jewellery makers with different hues and shades being incorporate with modern and edgy designs. The demand for Egyptian-inspired designs also boomed in the 20s after the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in 1922 spread Egyptian imagery throughout the western world. Scarabs and lotus flowers were popular and people even opted for rings with Pharaoh’s heads, sphinxes and mummies.
So, as you can see, vintage accessories are not just old (or styled on old-fashioned items). They carry with them a host of history and rings of this kind could really help bring your retro wedding day to life.