From bangle to band, chain to articulated link, the bracelet is one of the earliest forms of jewellery, found throughout history and can be traced back as early as 5000BC. No longer limited to the wrists of nobility, the bracelet has found its way to becoming a staple piece of a lady's jewellery collection. Some of the earliest examples were made from organic materials such as leather cords and braided leaves and foliage. As the human race developed and tastes changed so did the materials used for adornment. The discovery of precious metals such as gold and silver lent their malleable properties to advanced designs which would stand the test of time.
Creative pieces include precious gemstones, hand engraving, symbols, enamelling, openwork, carving and filigree. As an articulated piece of jewellery made up of a series of links, bracelets have the capacity to move with the wearer making them eye-catching and wearable. Bracelets which are solid and do not have the flow of movement are called bangles.
One of the most favoured styles since the 1920s is the diamond line bracelet, or now in modern times more widely known as the ‘tennis bracelet’. This design is simple and features a continuous line of diamonds each set in an articulated collet and fastened with a secure clasp. This classic and versatile piece of jewellery can be worn as a stand-alone piece or ‘stacked' next to other bracelets or indeed a watch. Traditionally featuring diamonds, this type of bracelet can also be set with coloured gemstones or a combination of both.
Antique sapphire and diamond bracelet, circa 1910.
Antique sapphire and diamond bracelet. Set to center with an oval cabochon natural unenhanced sapphire in an open back rubover setting with an approximate weight of 1.80 carats, bordered by twelve round old cut diamonds in open back grain settings with a combined approximate weight of 0.75 carats, to a coronet cluster design with millegrain borders, intricately pierced gallery with engraved detailing to base and open backholing, set on a curb link chain and fitted with a secure concealed push clasp with additional safety chain, approximately 7.1" in length. Marked yellow gold with platinum settings, French import mark, circa 1910.