Saturday, April 4, 2009

Butterfly Wing Jewelry - Nature as Accessories

Jewelry which is made from insects dates back to ancient times, but one style which has remained popular to today is butterfly wing jewelry. During the British Empire Exhibition of 1924, Thomas Mott's butterfly wing jewelry exhibit is credited with making butterfly jewelry a fashion rage.

Basically, there are three different types of vintage butterfly wing jewelry.
  • The first is jewelry that actually contains a whole butterfly. Jewelry like this is often found in a large pendant and is quite rare.
  • The second type is called "Morpho Butterfly Jewelry." It has scenes reverse painted on the glass or lucite covering the butterfly wing. Common scenes are tropical, western, even people and animals.
  • The third style is Morpho Butterfly jewelry which has not been altered in any way. The wing of the butterfly is set in jewelry so as to showcase it's natural beauty.
In the USA, a company called Hoffman started making butterfly-wing jewelry during the late thirties. They still manufacture today, with new pieces being sold at the Amish Farm & Home Gift Shop in Lancaster, PA. Older Hoffman pieces range from the typical palm tree & sunset motif to the very attractive art deco or arts & crafts style frames. Their newer pieces have an Amish motif.

The bracelet featured in this blog is a Morpho reverse painted Hoffman butterfly wing bracelet. It is available for $32.99 from my Vintage Jewelry Lane butterfly jewelry category.

1 comment:

  1. I have a 1964-1965 New York worlds fair pin . Genuine Butterfly Wings, By Hoffman.
    I have never seen another like it. It is still in org box .
    Marking on box,
    Unisphere presented by United States Steel
    1961 New York World's Fair 1964-1965 Corporation.
    On side of box (Disbursed for Goldfarb ) Esposidos Souvenir Corp.
    Official Licence .