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History in Reverse

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog

Your Essential Primer on Estate Jewelry- And Why There Is

Nothing Else Like It!

The world of estate jewelry offers a beautiful array of treasures to suit every taste: vintage jewelry, antique jewelry, one-of-a-kind pieces and more. It is anything you could imagine — and a lot of discoveries you couldn’t.

The term estate jewelry doesn’t just refer to pieces which come from an estate — the things owned by someone — it also includes uncommon and fun jewelry, too. Many are designer pieces. When we are adding pieces to the deBoulle Estate Collection, we are looking for signed pieces from Cartier, David Webb or Van Cleef & Arpels. We are also looking for pieces that are emblematic of their period of creation. “We might have a client who is interested in something unusual and rare, which these pieces definitely are,” says Denis Boulle, CEO of deBoulle Diamond & Jewelry. “Jewelry is about the imagination, and estate pieces have a sense of romance that comes from the time when they were made.”

Our dedicated, expert associates are accredited by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and several of our staff are GIA Graduate Gemologists. With specialized equipment and many years of experience, our associates empower our customers to buy with absolute confidence. Each piece is thoroughly checked, researched and verified, so that our customers know that the piece they are buying is authentic. Our unrivaled collection of estate pieces is just one of the many facets that sets deBoulle apart. Timeless and individualistic, estate jewelry is filled with legends and lore, as well as the unique. Come visit deBoulle anytime to see what is new — and old.


Circa 1970-Present

Encompasses all jewelry after the 1960’s which has not been designated with a style.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
Graff natural fancy intense yellow radiant cut diamonds and marquis, round and pear shape diamond fringe necklace, circa 2010.


Circa 1950-1960

The years following World War II were a welcome return to prosperity — and jewelry design reflected that in its bold looks crafted with glistening diamonds and gemstones. The styles eventually gave way to voluptuous curves, especially iconic pearl strands, and whimsical portrayals of nature, including animals, flowers, branches and vines.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog

Harry Winston diamond clips.


Circa 1940-1950

The Golden Age of Hollywood brought big, bold glamour to the jewelry scene — by way of multicolored golds in yellow, rose and green, heightened with a variety of gemstones, shapes and materials for added drama. The term retro-modern itself suggests looking both backward and forward, so this jewelry looks to the past and future for its inspiration. Like a great Hollywood star, each piece is always ready for its close-up

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
Herz-Belperron clips.


Circa 1920-1935

A design movement in the years between the world wars, the Art Deco period derived from the exciting Paris exposition of 1925 known as the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes. It was an extravaganza designed by the French government to highlight the new modern styles of architecture, interior decoration, furniture, jewelry and other decorative arts. In the U.S., the Jazz Age of the 1920s and ’30s perfectly coincided with the Art Deco movement, bringing color back into jewelry and introducing geometric themes with linear designs embellished with even more color.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
Yard Emerald and Diamond ring.


Circa 1900-1915

So named for England’s King Edward, this era brought forth jewelry known for its use of platinum, pearls and diamonds. Its hallmarks are exquisite craftsmanship — often made with platinum — and a feminine flair, especially its garland styles embellished with garlands and flowers in invisible settings.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
Pearl brooch/pendant with ruby and diamonds.


Circa 1895-1910

Art Nouveau jewelry was a rebellion against the more complex designs of the mid and late Victorian period. It was also a movement toward the hand-made, with silver, enamels and moonstones combined in organic forms to represent insects, plants and flowers.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
René Lalique dragonfly brooch.


Circa 1840-1890

Queen Victoria, who reigned over the United Kingdom for almost 64 years, greatly influenced much of the fashion in the world. Initially, sentimental jewelry with floral motifs and symbolic themes flourished. The middle of the century brought the Grand Period, with its many revival styles, including Gothic and Renaissance. Late in the century, the Aesthetic Period blossomed. During this time, gilded metal, rolled gold and manufactured gold-plating techniques were perfected and gems such as citrines, amethysts and garnets were popular. With the death of Prince Albert in 1861, the queen went into mourning for years — which resulted in black jewelry becoming in vogue.

History in Reverse Jewelry, Blog
Engraved bow brooch with turquoise.

deBoulle Diamond & Jewelry is a world-renowned independent retailer of fine estate jewelry, premium pre-owned watches, and vintage timepieces. If you are interested in selling your vintage or estate fine jewelry and or pre-owned premium watch, deBoulle is always seeking better pieces to add to our Collections. Precious metals and gemstones are at their highest prices in decades.

You can find out exactly what your heirlooms are worth. The professional sales associates at deBoulle are diamond, jewelry and watch experts who are ready to assist you with your sale of fine estate jewelry and pre-owned premium watches. Please contact us if you are interested in selling or trading in.