Knowledge Centre > Jewellery History > History

Brooches: A Versatile Accessory

Brooches have come a long way from their origins


 tourmaline, diamond pearl pendant/brooch berganza hatton garden
Victorian tourmaline, diamond and pearl pendant/brooch, English, circa 1870.
Ref: 25390

Monday 9th May 2016

Brooches have come a long way from their origins where they were used in a functional capacity to fasten or secure articles of clothing. It is believed that the Romans were the first to elaborately decorate their clothing pins which they named fibula, placing them on the shoulder to secure their robes. The practical uses of brooches somewhat ceased during the middle ages when brooches transitioned into ornaments used purely for adornment and decoration. Brooches can be found in an array of designs featuring precious metals, gemstones of every kind, fine enamelling, engraving and carving. Due to their versatile nature brooches can and have been worn on hats, scarves, overcoats, ball gowns, sashes, belts and even as pendants.

Our reigning monarch Queen Elizabeth II is rarely seen without one of her elegant pins. Since her coronation in 1952 she has delighted us with creations from Garrard, Boucheron and Cartier to name a few. Many of her brooches were inherited upon her accession to the throne and hold immense historical value.

More recently brooches were featured adorning celebrities at the MET gala in New York city. Actress Saoirse Ronan wore an Anna Hu Butterfly brooch set with rubies, pink and white diamonds accessorising the midsection of her gown. Singer Jared Leto opted to wear a Cartier diamond and sapphire brooch instead of the traditional bow-tie. Actress Allison Williams was photographed wearing diamond and pearl brooches in her hair and Actress Uma Thurman stole the show with a Cartier museum vintage peacock brooch, featuring over eighty-three carats of diamonds pinned to the strap of her gown.

At Berganza we have a collection of stylish ancient, antique and vintage jewellery, including Victorian brooches. Visit us today and choose your very own versatile accessory, perfect for any occasion. 

Art Deco onyx, diamond emerald brooch berganza hatton garden
Art Deco onyx, diamond and emerald brooch, circa 1925.
Ref: 25370
Antique brooch set citrines amethysts berganza hatton garden
Victorian amethyst and citrine brooch, Scottish, circa 1860.
Ref: 25415
Antique natural pearl and diamond pendant hatton garden
Antique natural pearl and diamond pendant.brooch, circa 1890.
Ref: 25433
front view Art Deco diamond clip brooch, circa 1930.
Art Deco diamond clip brooch, circa 1930.
Ref: 25434
Signed Art Nouveau gold brooch
Art Nouveau gold and diamond brooch, circa 1900.
Ref: 25363
Ruby and diamond set fob watch by Mellerio, circa 1900. berganza hatton garden
Mellerio Ruby and diamond set fob watch, French, circa 1900.
Ref: 25742
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