by Rob Wagner
Brooches and pins have long been one of the most versatile jewelry choices for women of all ages. Vintage brooches and pins are wonderful additions to a variety of outfits and styles. Vintage brooches and estate brooches are widely available and vintage-style brooches are making a comeback, giving jewelry lovers a wide selection of pins to incorporate into their wardrobe. Vintage brooches range in style from plastic pop-culture pins to Victorian-era sterling silver brooches and pins embellished with gemstones. Add vintage jewelry to your outfit with a brooch or pin with retro style.
History: The brooch can trace its history to the Bronze Age when pins were a popular adornment for clothing. During this early period, brooches were fastened to clothing using an early version of the safety pin. Byzantines introduced colored enameled brooches, and by the 18th century, brooches became an important clothing accessory to fasten finery such as feathers and fabric. In the 19th century, the brooch expanded into many styles to give women versatility. Today, brooches give women and girls the chance to add a touch of vintage jewelry to practically anything they wear.
Types: You can choose from many types of antique jewelry. Gemstone, plastic, novelty, filigree, sterling silver, pearl and enamel vintage brooches are all great additions to a variety of outfits. Try a pop-art plastic brooch on a fun, modern handbag or dress up a simple sweater with a pearl cameo pin. Brooches made of gold and diamonds can be worn with dressy or casual outfits, while novelty sterling silver brooches can be pinned to hats, scarves and blazers.
Function: Vintage brooches serve a functional purpose in addition to an aesthetic one. Throughout time, brooches have been used to fasten clothing and hair, while bringing a fashionable touch to an overall look. Like many other types of antique jewelry, vintage brooches have evolved to fit the style and function of women around the world.
Features: Vintage brooches reflect the prominent art designs of the era in which they were made. The Art Nouveau movement of the early 20th century dominated the features of brooches with highly stylized flowing flowers and plant motifs. Art Deco followed with bold symmetric lines. Regional designs also are abundant. Brooches from the Southwest United States and Mexico, for example, frequently incorporate silver with turquoise stones. Vintage-inspired brooches often choose one of these features to showcase. Modern cameo brooches, for example, bring the Victorian era back with intricate gold designs and rich pink and red hues.
Collecting: Vintage brooch collecting provides an excellent opportunity for novice hobbyists to start in the field. Vintage brooches are available in a wide range of prices styles. Consider collecting brooches that appeal to you, rather than heavily tracking trends and market value.
Care for your vintage jewelry carefully. Pieces of vintage jewelry can be more fragile and delicate than modern pins and pendants. Avoid exposing vintage brooches to chemicals and store and clean them gently.