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cabinet of curiosities | dkfarnum
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cabinet of curiosities

cabinet of curiosities

Not all jewelry has to be precious. While we focus primarily on fine jewelry, the design of fantasy or runway jewelry can be compelling.

After World War II, jewelry became more accessible to all parts of society with the introduction of mass production. During both World Wars, gold and other precious metals were requisitioned by governments for the war effort and for the arms industry. Craftsmen had to turn to alternative metals (nickel, silver, bronze, Bakelite) and to expand their parameters. The role of women evolved and with that, fashion and jewelry design began to reflect this change. “Bijoux Fantaisies” or costume jewelry emerged as interesting new adornment. Runway jewelry has gradually emerged as a way for Couture designers to dramatize their “looks” and to make decorative pieces more affordable.

We present five options below, just in from our French foray.

 mercedes robirosa earrings mercedes robirosa earrings

Robirosa designed for Saint Laurent and Alaia but is perhaps best known for her work with Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel. These seventies geometric earrings bear her signature. 2.5 inches long, light and lovely.

yves saint laurent abstract flowers yves saint laurent abstract flowers

Large and light, these abstract flowers by Saint Laurent are from the collection of Catherine Deneuve who for many years was a muse of Saint Laurent. Signed, ca. 1980s. 2 inch diameter.

ugo correani cuff ugo correani cuff

Correani collaborated with Chanel and Versace, but his work under his own signature is most distinctive. He designed costumes and jewelry for La Scala. This cuff may be worn on the upper or lower arm. Signed and singular. Fits most arms.

abstract coil earrings abstract coil earrings

Made in the fifties, these bohemian beauties were avant garde. Unsigned but distinctive and chic. French. 2.5 inches long.

jean xavier duhart earrings jean xavier duhart earrings

Created for fashion shows for Thierry Mugler, these crispy frosted metal and glass stars are emblematic of Duharts love of glass and modernist style. Signed, distinctive.


the wall street journal

“Costume jewelry represents a nice entry level, especially for younger people,” said Dana Kraus, owner of Connecticut-based DKF Estate Jewelry. “I recommend new or young collectors to find a designer you love, follow and collect them, and take care of what you have.”

The Wall Street Journal | Read Online


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