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Retro Jewelry

Travel back to the glamor of the Retro era (1940s-1950s). Bold, oversized designs and a resurgence of yellow gold characterize this period. Explore jewelry that reflects the exuberance and optimism of post-war America.

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The Retro era of jewelry saw a more free-flowing organic, less symmetrical feel. Gold jewelry and consequently yellow jewelry become very popular. The introduction of the large ‘gas pipe’ look also became popular. Much of the ‘Retro’ jewelry from the era came in the time of World War II. Like almost every era of jewelry, Retro reflected the times. Some of the jewelry started to resemble tank treads for example. Buckles became back in style, and colored gemstones such as aquamarine began to be introduced.  Due to the war, larger gemstones of slightly lesser quality were commonly used to add color to keep the prices down.

Retro Jewelry FAQs

What is Retro-era jewelry?

Retro-era jewelry, from the 1940s to the 1950s, reflects a departure from wartime austerity with bold designs, oversized pieces, and the use of yellow and rose gold. Gemstones like citrine and aquamarine were popular during this period.

What are the characteristics of Retro-era jewelry?

Retro-era jewelry is characterized by large, statement pieces, often featuring bows, ribbons, floral motifs, and pieces that resemble post-war times such as “tank track” bracelets and “gas pipe necklaces”. Yellow and rose gold, often accompanied by bold gemstones like citrine and aquamarine, define the glamorous and extravagant style of this era.

How old must jewelry be to be called Retro jewelry?

To be considered retro jewelry, pieces should date from the 1940s to the 1950s, capturing the postwar era’s departure from wartime austerity towards more extravagant and bold designs.

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