The Victorian period (between 1837 and 1901) is named after Queen Victoria. This was an era of modernization that affected fashion and jewelry in a very positive way.
Gold was the preeminent material, pinchback (an alloy of copper and zinc similar to brass) and aluminum were widely used, as well as ivory and coral, all these materials had an important role in the production of jewelry.
The favorite gemstones of the Victorian jewelers were diamonds, emeralds, topaz, and turquoise, but also pearls.
One characteristic piece of jewelry of the Victorian era was the Cameo, a carved image in materials such as coral, lava stone or glass. This was used almost everywhere in pendants, lockets, rings, earrings, and bracelets.
One peculiarity of the Victorian era was the use of black in jewelry. Black was not only worn to symbolize mourning, but it was used as a fashion statement as well. In the case of black Victorian jewelry, the materials were mostly Berlin iron, cast iron, Gutta-percha which is a type of resin from Malaysia, onyx, vulcanite, and jet a type of black fossilized wood.
The Victorian era marks a period of splendor, undeniable beauty, and modernity in the fashion and jewelry history that still influences our modern period. Nowadays it is not unusual to find clothing accessories and jewelry items which resemble the ones from the Victorian period. The romantic style, intricate metalwork and elaborate use of precious gemstones of that time are timeless and still make the heart of almost every woman beat a bit faster.