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Riviera retro | dkfarnum
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Riviera retro

Pieces featured below are all from the forties and fifties and available for sale at dkf.

Between 1937 and 1961, the decorative arts evolved into a period of renewal, especially as manifested in jewelry and fashion design.

Art Deco geometric forms gave way to a lavishly figurative style, to jewelry as sculpture.

These (the forties) years started as times of deprivation and dissonance when the use of precious stones and metals were constricted, and designers had to make do with what was available to survive.

The fifties and sixties saw jewelry and fashion evolving into exuberance and extravagance as the world tried to regain equilibrium post-war.

The wasp waist and extravagant hats in fashion inspired Cartier and Van Cleef to create equally dramatic designs.

Technical proficiency became a banner for the haute jewelry houses as evidenced in the Van Cleef zipper necklace created by Van Cleef for the Dutchess of Windsor. Jewelry emulated lace, wicker, and other textures.

Necklaces could transform to bracelets, pins to earrings, brooches to bracelets.

Themes that emerged in the forties and fifties jewelry:

Brooches as the indispensable accessory.

Preferred necklaces evolved from long sautoirs to close-fitting “gas-pipe” and snake-chain chokers.

Bracelets were sculpted, usually articulated raised geometric shapes or flat, flexible straps of plaited or braided metal.

Rings had remained opulent even during the war, but they became more refined. Knot shaped, turban-shaped they were anchors of a woman’s jewelry wardrobe.

Earrings that had been long became reserved for dressier occasions, and close to the ear daytime earrings emerged, often as suites with matching necklaces and brooches.

We love jewelry from this period as we feel it represents the most innovative design in the twentieth century.

These pieces have become templates for much of what is seen as “modern” today.


forties gold tank bracelet forties gold tank bracelet

Composed of 14k yellow gold, probably American (makers mark is rubbed), this forties tank bracelet has it all. Affordable elegance.

18k gold and diamond ring 18k gold and diamond ring

Vintage 1940s cocktail ring with 18k gold and diamonds, French hallmarks. Size 6.5 but may be sized. Very Belperron styling, chic.

18k rose gold diamond ring 18k rose gold diamond ring

Fabulous cocktail ring from the 1940s with pave diamonds and two-textured gold. French hallmarks, size 6.5 but may be sized.

pierre sterle rope twist earrings ca. 1950's pierre sterle rope twist earrings ca. 1950’s

18K gold Sterle earrings. As seen in the Sterle book, iconic Sterle design that looks new although it was created almost 70 years ago. 12.75 grams, 1-3/4″ long by 3/4″ wide. Signed, ca. 1950’s.


seaman schepps looking glass necklace seaman schepps looking glass necklace

Vintage Seaman Schepps pendant on an Antique Fob Chain. Seaman Schepps looking glass from the 1940’s in 14k gold; classic American design. We have it on an antique French 18k gold fob chain which is sold separately. Signed and stunning.


Call the DKF Personal Assistant
(917) 841-8405
to order or for further details