Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Look What I Found. Wired Flower Necklace from 1940's Occupied Germany

Aren't these lovely?

I recently purchased 2 unfinished vintage beaded and wired necklaces made in the 1940's in Germany.

They consist of flower motifs, made from flower and leaf beads and brass wire, joined with melon shaped beads linked rosary chain style...everything in that chalk white that was so classic at that time.

The challenge in using this necklace, or in using parts of it, like the flower clusters, is the uneven patina of the wire. So I've been doing a bit of experimenting in both directions - cleaning the wire to restore it to the original golden brass, and also going the other way and deepening the patina of the wire to make it uniformly dark.  I took apart one of the 2 necklaces in order to do these experiments.  I'll talk about what I did in an upcoming blog post, but you can see the results in the first photo, restored on the left, original in the middle, and patina'd on the right.

I can locate and date these necklaces with some precision due to the tags that were attached. Germany was occupied by the Allies from 1945 until 1949, and these necklaces were made in the US Zone of Allied-occupied Germany during that time.

Vintage with a clear provenance - it doesn't get any better.

1 comment:

  1. An amazing find, S.! I think I actually like your darkened patina the best. The contrast between the chalk white beads and the black wire is really striking! Can't wait to see what you do with these beauties!