Industrialisation brought with it mass production and machine-made objects and for artists living in England this was a disaster. They believed that skill and expertise were fundamental and far more important than materials and gemstones. Designs from this Arts and Crafts era are often simple in style but unrivalled in workmanship.
They were directly opposed to the Industrial Revolution so they wanted items to be handmade by an individual or at most a small group. Inspiration came from nature and abstract organic shapes so the common themes were flowers, leaves and animals. In making an accessory like a ring, the focus shifted from the material to the design and this meant that inexpensive metals like brass and copper were chosen over platinum and gold. The quality of a gemstone wasn’t as important as its colour and so amber, moonstone, pearl and opal were common choices. They were cut into cabochons and didn’t take centre stage in a ring but were rather used as accents.
The final product was frequentlylooked rustic, because it was crafted entirely by hand, even though the jewellery makers were highly skilled. This amateur look is what they wanted as it meant that each item was unique. To find your own piece of history, search for quality Arts and Craft jewellery online to find that special one-of-a-kind ring that you simply can’t live without.