Costume jewelry isn’t just about cheap imports created off-shore. Costume jewelry has a special history in the evolution of jewelry as an accessory in our society.
Costume jewelry has been a part of our society for over 300 years. In the 18th century, there were glimpses of it with the introduction of some glass jewelry pieces emerging onto the market. However, it was in the 1800s that costume jewelry really started to make its mark with the incorporation of semi-precious stones. The use of semi-precious materials meant that jewelry could be made more affordable and therefore more accessible to the common people.
When I think of the true era of costume jewelry I think of the beginning of the 20th century. When the desire for well-made replicas of higher-end pieces connected with the machine age. This made it possible to mass-produce cheaper versions of “the real thing “.
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