About the style of this marvelous warehouse-find Jewelry…
Downton Abbey – The Great Gatsby
There has always been a following for the Art Deco style of the 1920s, but it is certainly growing today. Why the fascination with the 20s?
The 1920s was “Party Time”, and people were celebrating after the harsh, painful years of World War I. The economy was stable, in an upward swing and people were taking advantage of the security and prosperity by having fun. (Sometimes that meant decadence.) With Prohibition, drinking alcohol was illegal, but that didn’t stop those who wanted to imbibe. They did it in secret, in little hidden gathering places where parties would be held most nights.
With travel opportunities at an all time high, including cars for the average family, airplanes, autogyros and trains, as well as the motion picture phenomenon, the style encompassed the idea that ‘anything was possible.’
Architecture responded in kind with taller buildings reaching to scrape the sky. Literature and art flourished, as did the movies, which brought the world to the average person. Everyone wanted to be 'Modern'.
When King Tut’s Tomb was discovered and opened by Howard Carter in 1922, it made news worldwide, and the wave of Egyptian Revival in the decorative arts touched every aspect of life…architecture and home décor, as well as fashion. People couldn’t get enough of the Egyptian style. Having seen hieroglyphics showing the flat-chested women of the Nile, depicted with their hair straight and chopped, with bangs, women lopped off their long hair into a bob and sported bangs, too. They even bound their breasts and wore straight chemise dresses (without waistlines) and the hemline went higher--and higher--than ever before.
Enter the flapper…she was progressive, passionate, sophisticated, fashion-conscious and flirty. She was worldly, a real party girl. She related to the rich land of Egypt, with its height-of-an-empire lifestyle, a place where mysterious Pharoahs --and Cleopatra-- had ruled the ancient world, and influenced men in exotic style.
By the Mid-Twenties, when this jewelry was created, there was also a brief Art Nouveau Revival, in 1924, which accounts for the proliferation of ladies with flowing hair, butterflies, dragonflies and peacocks as popular motifs, just as they delighted at the turn of the century.
As the decade progressed, and ended, the hunger for other ‘exotic’ cultures ushered in a taste for Oriental, Mayan, Persian and Far Eastern motifs, as evidenced by the Fox Theater chain building edifices to those ancient civilizations.
Today, we still appreciate the 1920s style – and it is even more ‘in vogue’ right now than just a few years ago! With "Downton Abbey" spanning the 20s, as well as the release of "The Great Gatsby" in 2014, and the popular Australian TV series, "Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries" (on Netflix), we are seeing fashion, themed events, and even weddings taking hold and running with ‘flapper style’.