The United States of America was formed as a nation on the 4th July 1776 when thirteen American colonies united and signed the declaration of independence. As a country in its infancy the United States took advantage of their new opportunities for trade and importing, manufacturing new goods which were previously produced and supplied by England. Culture and arts flourished, with new materials artists created inspired pieces drawing upon fashions from their native origins. Design houses such as Black, Starr and Frost found their beginnings in the early 19th century where it’s merchandise included an eclectic range of home décor, fine paintings and jewellery.
Discovery of gold in California in 1848 attracted migrants from across the globe all hoping to find their fortunes in the land of opportunity. Each of these new settlers brought with them skills and trades which added to the diversity of this growing land. During the years of 1848 to 1855 the Californian gold rush was in full swing and skilled jewelers created brooches, pendants and bracelets decorated with diggers and gold nuggets all encapsulating the essence of the time.
By 1870 Tiffany & Co. the esteemed American jewellery house had been established for nearly forty years. After acquiring part of the French Crown Jewels, Tiffany & Co became synonymous with style, elegance and glamour and was often referred to as ‘The King of Diamonds’. Tiffany lived up to their reputation well into the 20th century having pioneered American jewellery on many fronts including silversmithing, jewellery design, and gemmology. Their designs inspired a nation with Art Nouveau pieces from Louis Comfort Tiffany, to geometric jewels from the Art Deco period all the way through to the bold designs of creators such as Oscar Heyman Brothers famed for their craftsmanship and daring designs.
With top houses like Tiffany & Co. setting the standard for exceptional design and quality, the 20th century is marked as an exemplary time for jewellery design in the United States. In 1916 J.E. Caldwell brought exceptional Art Nouveau pieces to the American public, using the signature motifs of the Art Nouveau period of hybrid insects, sensuous female forms and decorative flora and fauna. Their success continued throughout the Art Deco period with high quality geometric designs which are still sought after today.
Other famous designers of the 1920s, 30s, 40s and 50s include Raymond Yard who established himself as a skilled perfectionist creating elegantly understated jewels for New York’s elite. Seaman Schepps who provided a vivid display of bold, geo-centric designs all set with high quality natural gemstones which graced the covers of high fashion magazines such as Vogue and Harper’s. Finally, the Granat Brothers of California specialized in engagement rings and wedding bands making beautifully fitted sets for retailers around the country.
View our collection of jewels from the finest designers America has to offer. Whether you are searching for intricately carved pieces of the 19th century, signature geometric styles of the Art Deco period or bright and bold designs from the 1940s and 50s at Berganza we have pieces to suit your needs. Visit us instore or view our range online and purchase your very own piece of American history.