Many of us grew up thinking of charm bracelets as bits of kitsch worn by teen girls. Smart women have always known better. Elegant, beautifully designed charm bracelets have adorned some of the most famous wrists in the world.
People have worn talismans and charms since the dawn of civilization, and the first known charm bracelets date back to ancient Babylonia. The modern charm bracelet was born of royalty and romance. The marriage of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert was that rare thing among royals, a true love match. Albert adored the young Queen, and frequently gave gifts of jewelry. To commemorate the birth of their first child, he wanted to give her a special gift. He chose a gold link chain bracelet, had the birth date inscribed on it, and asked the jeweler to attach a heart-shaped gold locket ornamented with enamel. As more children came along, eight more lockets were added, each finished in a different shade of enamel, and each with a lock of the child’s hair inside.
Queen Victoria loved her charmed bracelet, and loved the idea of such highly personalized jewelry. Soon she was commissioning new charm bracelets, many of which she gave as gifts to friends and favorites. This caused a sensation among the upper class. Every woman wanted a bracelet that suggested she too belonged to the inner circle, and had received a gift from the Queen. One can only imagine the number of women who purchased charm bracelets for themselves, then swore the jewelers to secrecy.
At the Paris Exposition of 1889, Tiffany jewelers debuted their first charm bracelet, a chain with a single heart. Whether or not the design was a deliberate echo of Queen Victoria’s original is unknown. The piece was an instant hit, and soon became one of the company’s most popular items. The heart tag bracelet is now a classic, and remains in production today.
In almost two centuries, the charm bracelet has been seldom been out of favor. When women bared their arms for the first time in the 1920s, bangles with dangles became must-have accessories. During World War II, servicemen sent overseas discovered that charms were just the kind of small, pretty souvenirs they could easily carry home with them. When inexpensive plastics came into use after the war, millions of charms poured out of millions of gumball machines into the hands of little girls, who soon graduated to sterling silver charm bracelets and charms designed for every life experience imaginable. In the late 1980s, high-end designers like Donna Karan added haute couture charm bracelets to their lines.
Joan Crawford, Elizabeth Taylor and Jacqueline Kennedy were all charm bracelet enthusiasts. Humphrey Bogart gave Lauren Bacall a bracelet with a whistle charm to commemorate a scene in To Have and Have Not, the movie that started their romance. Princess Diana’s charm bracelet included her sons’ initials in gold block letters, ballet slippers, a tiny replica of St. Paul’s Cathedral and a golden apple to represent her love of New York. Kate Middleton, wife of Prince William, is often spotted wearing a bracelet with a single gold disk engraved with a crown and her initial, proving that elegant charm bracelets are still at home on royal wrists.
In the world of Jewelry Addicts, curiosity and creativity are intrinsically intertwined in one always-evolving, artful journey. Jewelry Addicts thrives on exploration, discovery, and the beauty of geometric design. Beauty exists in the smallest of details. Passionate, hands-on design and production turns found, raw input into refined and timeless rose quartz statement pieces, from bracelets used with healing stone to girls bracelet inspired by the iconic brands . All Jewelry Addicts designs are crafted from the highest quality stainless steel, sterling silver, 18K gold plated, copper, healing crystals and natural stones materials.
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