Knowledge Centre > Jewellery History > Design Periods > 1960’s

1960’s

The 1960s was a transformative decade defined by a whirlwind of social, cultural, and political changes. The decade was marked by a spirit of rebellion and a quest for individual freedom, epitomized by counterculture, the rise of feminism, and the embrace of psychedelic art and music.

Iconic moments include the 1961 USA presidential election of the USA’s youngest ever president, JFK, the moon landing in 1969, as well as a musical revolution with Beatlemania and possibly one of the most historic music events to ever take place: Woodstock festival.

Similar to the fashions of the time, 1960s jewellery experimented with being unconventional. Vibrant colours and unusual textures were worked into fabulous big, yet wearable jewels. Jewellery designs were diverse and embraced geometric shapes within abstract designs. Often featuring bold angular lines juxtaposed against swirling patterns, jewellery reflected the Pop Art movement of the time, while also being heavily influenced by modernism and the Space Age era.

Jewellery in the 1960s tended to be bold and substantial. Necklaces, bracelets, and earrings were often chunky and oversized, making a strong fashion statement. Cocktail rings would often be bright and dramatic.

Both yellow gold and platinum were used, and sometimes combined to strike a contrast within the same piece. Jewellery designers began experiment and play with textures, with some celebrated jewellery designers such as Georges Lenfant, Andrew Grima and Jean Schlumberger creating avant-garde and unconventional masterpieces.

Whether reflecting the mod culture, the flower power movement, or the influence of pop art, 1960s jewellery remains an important and distinctive chapter in the history of fashion and design.

Vintage earrings of the 1960’s and 1970’s

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Updated 17/06/2024 at 5:34PM

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