Jewel Boxes

1899.  My Lady’s Jewel Box  MY lady’s jewel box, if chosen by herself, will quite probably give expression to some of the tastes and characteristics of its owner. It may be a richly embossed square or oblong silver casket, in which one would expect to see a blaze of light and color from magnificent gems; it may be of some beautifully colored leather daintily overlaid with tracery of silver, arguing a preference for elegance and artistic effects; or it may be fashioned, in serviceable if somewhat commonplace style, of a suitable cabinet wood with metal corners and top ornament. Some such form it will assume, if it is of generous proportions and intended to accommodate all of its possessor’s treasures of gold and gems. Its velvet or chamois lined interior is divided into compartments by means trays and adjustable partitions, which be removed or rearranged to furnish suitable space for any special article. Still another style of jewel box, well established in favor, is the heart shaped affair of silver, which ranges from a considerable size down to the tiniest of ring and trinket holders.

In briefly noting the contents of a well equipped jewel box, there is no question of the article with which the chronicler must begin.  It cannot be other than the ring, around which clusters so much of the sentiment and romance of jewelry tradition, which has never been more profusely and elegantly worn in this country than today. For, though modified in appearance somewhat from time to time by the vagaries of ever changing fashion, the ring yet defies them all, and, with its endless round, remains essentially the same and always beloved of womankind. BY ALICE BENEDICT, Feb. 1, 1899. Jewelers’ Circular


THE PROBLEM of choosing gifts approaches with Christmas, and although the shops never offered a more beautiful display of holiday goods, its solution is a matter requiring much time and thought, unless a list is kept of friends’ known wishes. The fever begins about the first of December and reaches its climax with the last week before Christmas, making necessary many tours of the shops; where this is impossible the following illustrations and suggestions will be found useful. Perhaps the easiest presents to select are those for women, including the very little maid and the grandmother, though for the latter the question again assumes a more difficult aspect. …………. Beautiful articles are exhibited in the new copper gold ware in the form of jewel cases, photograph frames, opera glasses, desk accoutrements and bric-a-brac. ….The Delineator, Jan. 1903

1905.   Jewel boxes never seem to go out of date and this year shows a great many new and beautiful ideas in this line. Among the newest goods is a heart shaped jewel box of German silver with velvet cushion top They come in different sizes to retail from two dollars up. Fabrics, fancy goods and Notions, Volume 39 1905

March, 1912.   The sample lines of fancy goods now being displayed by manufacturers and importers are far more attractive than ever before. American manufacturers, especially, have been and still are making most wonderful strides in the production of fancy goods of all descriptions. The advances they have made in this direction should be a source of satisfaction, not only to them, but also to the trade in general. In no branch of the trade have greater advances been made than in the line of metal toilet articles, many of which, for artistic beauty and excellence of workmanship, compare most favorably with the choicest productions of the old world.

     Enameled Metal Fancy Articles Immensely Popular. Metal fancy goods enamelled to imitate ivory, which were first introduced a season or so ago, have now secured a great hold upon the popular fancy, and a splendid business is the result. All kinds of fancy goods are being made, decorated and finished in this manner, amongst the most popular of which are photograph frames, desk sets, clocks, jewel boxes, and thermometers, many of them being exquisite specimens of fine art in fancy goods. As a rule, these articles are made in close imitation of white ivory, although a number of the most attractive are perfect reproductions of old carved ivory, with a cream like effect, which is much admired. A new development however, and one which has met with popular approval, is the production of metal fancy articles of this nature in raised floral patterns; these floral decorations are daintily tinted in their natural colors and are not only entirely new and novel, but exceedingly artistic and sell remarkably well. The jewel box illustrated herewith are of this character and is one of two of the most popular in lines being shown.

September, 1912. Ivory Finished Metal Goods Popular. The interest which has been developing steadily in the line of imitation ivory toilet articles has reached such a point that manufacturers are unable to supply the demand although, in many cases, their facilities have been quadrupled. The popularity of articles of imitation ivory has extended to many lines of fancy metal goods. The assortment includes all kinds of goods which were formerly so popular in gold plate. Amongst the many attractive articles are clocks, candlesticks, jewel boxes, photo frames, thermometers, stamp boxes, cigar and cigarette jars, and many other fancy articles. Notions and fancy goods, Volume 46 1912

1916 American Fancy Goods Now Prominent ………………many Gold plated articles will undoubtedly be amongst the leaders during the coming season. Amongst the best sellers will be clocks, jewel cases, thermometers, photo frames, etc. Articles of brass, in spite of the tremendous advances which have recently been made in the cost of the raw material, will be much in evidence. In fact, but few buyers realize the extent to which brass is being used in the manufacture of fancy articles of almost every nature. Every season the line of brass novelties becomes larger and more varied. In addition to their good selling qualities, they make a handsome display when properly arranged.

It is with pleasure that we note the wonderful strides being made by American manufacturers in the production of high grade and artistic metal novelties. They have steadily improved their product each succeeding season and today fancy metal articles of American manufacture favorably compare in artistic beauty with the best production of the old world.

Not only do their products equal, if not surpass, those of European manufacturers but, owing to the introduction of modern machinery and up to date methods of manufacturing which has considerably lessened the costs of production, prices for American made fancy goods are lower than those of equal merit made abroad.

It is now but a rapidly dying out tradition that Europe surpasses us in the making of goods of artistic beauty of excellence of workmanship. For instance, with all the centuries of experience behind them, the cameo cutters of Europe are no more proficient today than those in America, and why should they be. America is the Mecca for all the old world musicians, artists, and experts in all kinds of professions, and why should it not also be the Mecca for the high class artisans of Europe…. NOTIONS AND FANCY GOODS July 1916



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