Retro Costume Cameos

Retro Costume Cameos

If you have an interest in vintage costume jewelry, then you should definitely consider a cameo. This delicate style dates back to ancient times, and it is used in many antique and vintage jewelry pieces. Cameos can be found in all colors, shapes, and types of jewelry, so they are easy to find.

What is cameo costume jewelry?

Technically, a cameo is any type of object with a carved relief, but costume jewelry cameos typically meet these requirements:

  • Material - Vintage cameos are normally made of shell or glass, but they can also be plastic, resin, or gemstones.
  • Color - This antique normally has a white carving on a reddish background, but it may be black, white, blue, or any other color.
  • Subject - Traditional Victorian styles are normally the silhouette of a person. Floral motifs, birds, or trees are other common subject matters.
  • Use - Cameos show up in all sorts of costume jewelry, including brooches, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, or pins. They may be set in rhinestones, semiprecious gems, or metal.
How do you tell if a cameo is actually shell?

Shell cameos are the most prized type of vintage cameo because it took a lot of time and effort to carve the shells. A real shell will typically have a slightly curved back, be made in natural colors, and have a matte look. You may be able to see color gradients from the shell, and when you hold it up to a light, it may be slightly see-through.

How do you wear a cameo pin?

A brooch is often the most common form of vintage jewelry. There are many ways to wear a brooch.

  • Wear it as a brooch - Pin the brooch jewelry to your collar or upper chest to display it.
  • Pin it on an accessory - Attach the cameo to a scarf, denim jacket, or purse to show off your antique.
  • Turn it into a necklace - Many brooches contain a back loop that you can run a chain through to make it into a necklace.
  • Include it in a costume - Add the brooch to any Victorian or Edwardian costume to make it look more authentic.
What time period is retro cameo jewelry from?

Cameo jewelry has been in style many times since it first became fashionable in the 1850s. Most costume jewelry made in the last century are from these time periods.

  • 1930s - These cameos often have art deco settings with rhinestones and clean, geometric lines.
  • 1950s - The subjects in 1950s costume jewelry tend to look extremely delicate and feminine. Jewelry from the 1950s is normally quite small.
  • 1980s - Cameos came back in the 1980s when Victorian-style clothing was trendy. These vintage pieces are often made of plastic or resin, and the bracelets and necklaces are typically quite big.