Vintage Mid -Century Earrings
After WWI Costume jewelry became quite popular. So many metals had been used exclusively to aid in the war, so designers began a creative journey to find replacements for precious metal jewelry. After the Great Depression, fashion focus was put on ladies looking "put together" simply. This led to the rise in the popularity of pearls, and the pearl necklace. Stars such as Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly were seen donning pearls as their choice looks for elegance and refinement. It wasn't long before designers learned to create faux pearls that were more affordable to the average housewife. Thus the rise in the popularity of costume jewelry began.
After WWII, Occupied Japan was in desperate need of an economic boost. Japanese manufacturers turned their attention to producing goods for export. Items such as ceramics and, yes, even jewelry! This was the era of expression! It was during this time that ladies began expressing themselves even more through the use of their jewelry and accessories. Lots of color, texture and interest pieces became the rage. Japan began creating quite an array of colorful beadwork. It was handpainted and made from everything from glass to various plastics. You can often still find these pieces in estate sales and antique markets. Jewelry marked " Occupied Japan" would be dated from 1945-1952. Jewelry marked "Japan" would be from 1952 onward. It is quite rare to find any two pieces alike. They were mostly unique and strung in interesting patterns and styles.
I have taken just such a necklace and created earrings with it. This necklace is mint in color and is accented with hand-painted beads, sugar beads, and aurora borealis-dipped plastic crystals No two pairs will be the same!