History of celluloid jewelry. Jewelry Styles from 1920s

Researching Costume Jewelry History, Companies and Signatures

History of celluloid jewelry

The obvious answer is via weight, but that is no help when buying online or even in a shop if there is no similar celluloid item with which to do an in-hand comparison. One trade name, Galalith, derives from the Greek words for milk gala and stone lith. Why Jewelry Makers Loved Lucite Lucite was unique and popular in the 1940s and 1950s as a way to make jewelry for several reasons. Enjoy them in their own right for what they really are: One of the very last chapters in the story of vintage celluloid adornments! Other characteristics included a horizontal orientation to buildings as well as the extensive use of chrome hardware. Trademarked names for the molded phenolics include: Aqualite, Arcolite, Arochems, Bakelite, Beckopol, Catapond, Catalin, Celoron, Coltrock and Coltwood, Consoweld , Gala, Marblette, Plaskon and Tego. White metal and rhinestones provided the base for larger color gemstones to be featured.

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Vintage Celluloid Jewelry: Featherlite, Featherweight, and Bubbleite

History of celluloid jewelry

Bakelite can be transparent, translucent, or opaque. An especially interesting cast phenolic was Bios Glace, made by Lisner in 1935, whereby a clear cast phenolic would be poured over a wood piece placed into a mold. They are of course vintage, having made in the 1950s, but they are not and should not be represented as Art Deco era jewelry. Testing: Application of hot water will produce a sour-milk or wet-wool smell. Cascades of beads or shapes drew the attention to the neckline.

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Celluloid: The Eternal Substitute

History of celluloid jewelry

Inspired by the possible money, John Hyatt began research into process. However, if sufficient heat is applied to any part of it — and that could be as high a temperature as boiling water or as low as 140F from tap water or being left in the sun — it will soften again. Hyatt used heat and pressure to simplify the manufacture of these compounds. Some designers took inspiration from earlier styles, resulting in a Victorian Revival in the late 1930s to early 1940s. By 1946, Providence, Rhode Island, was the costume jewelry capital of the U. It is almost always opaque never translucent and vintage pieces are often seen in mottled or swirled colors with black or very dark brown being one of them.

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A Lesson in Celluloid

History of celluloid jewelry

While testing acids on organic materials in 1846, Swiss chemistry professor Christian Friedrich Schönbein found that a mixture of sulfuric and nitric acids drastically affected the cellulose in cotton. Celluloid jewelry can be damaged by moisture, temperature extremes, or chemicals. Thus, mold marks can often be present. Fruit shapes add a touch of whimsy to your 1940s inspired outfit. Jewelry makers obliged by inventing new types of pieces. Celluloid cellulose nitrate This is the original and very flammable material invented by the Hyatt Brothers in New Jersey in 1868.

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Is it Bone, Ivory, or Celluloid? Test Your Knowledge!

History of celluloid jewelry

Though celluloid linens never completely replaced true linens particularly among the upper classes, who scorned such artificiality , they were moderately popular until shirt styles changed in the 1930s. Success with the male line was so great, the company discontinued its original line of ladies jewelry. Update, 2019: The Treasures from Yesterday web site no longer exists; the Researching Costume Jewelry resource has been incorporated into thesite. They were made of large polished cabochons of Lucite that looked like rock crystal. Similar materials like catalin used in radios and other consumer goods were made by other companies.

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Difference between lucite and plastic?

History of celluloid jewelry

This is a tough question to answer definitively! Many resembled pearls or could be real pearls. This Pepsi ad woman is wearing a green necklace, possibly made of Bakelite or Catalin plastic Early plastics started to grow in popularity at the start of the 20 th century. Ditto with the plastic pearls found on quite a few multi-strand necklaces made in Hong Kong, Japan and Germany during the 1950s — most people either love them or hate them. Not quite as heat resistant as the molded phenolics but is still a thermoset; for example, the top of an early 1940s radio cabinet made of a cast phenolic may be blistered from heat buildup while one of the same age but made from a molded phenolic will probably be fine. Linked bracelets and bangles were worn over gloves or on unadorned wrists.

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