When did wearing jewellery first become popular?
Archeological studies prove that every culture in the world has valued jewellery for many 1000s of years. Since the beginning of time people have enjoyed adorning themselves! The earliest pieces of jewellery were made using animal bones, predator’s teeth, feathers, shells or stones.
Archaeologists found 33 snail shell beads in Morocco’s Bizmoune Cave in 2014. Uranium dating found these early pieces of jewellery to be at least 150 000 years old, making them the oldest pieces of jewellery to ever be recorded.
Let’s look at 6 reasons why jewellery is so significant and meaningful:
1 It makes us feel good, confident and beautiful
Jewellery has been used through the ages to highlight the natural beauty of its wearers. In addition to that, it is commonly known that jewellery was, and still is, a symbol of status and a way to display wealth and importance. The ancient Pharaohs believed in the supernatural and healing powers of some metals and stones and they popularised the wearing of jewellery.
2 Jewellery connects us to other people
A piece of jewellery can be used as a way to create a connection between people. A mum and daughter could have matching pendants. A group of friends with the same jewellery have a lasting connection. A few years back I made a range of Sunflower jewellery for a group of 9 friends. The sunflower had been their school emblem and each flower had 9 petals, to symbolize the members of the group.
Imagine the pearl pendant that Anne wore on her wedding day in 1963. Then imagine her granddaughter Kirst wearing it as a bracelet on her wedding day in 2022.! Granny and Grandpa couldn’t be at the wedding so their fingerprints were on an chain round Kirst’s ankle, which connected her to them on her special day. Rememberance jewellery, popularized in Victorian times, is a way to connect us to those who are not physcially present.
3 A physical reminder of our memories
It is a physical reminder of our memories. A piece of jewellery can transport us back in time and stir up memories of an event, significant people, our pets or our favourite places. When you touch the shell pendant from your holiday it brings back a flash of the sights, sounds and smells of the experience and the people you shared it with.
4 Jewellery is empowering
Jewellery has historically been given as a gift to mark significant milestones or achievements, like a graduation, military reward or even Olympic medals. So the association of achievement and success has become deeply engrained with jewellery. Every time we wear the jewellery associated with the reward we feel empowered and reminded of what we can achieve.
5 Jewellery connects us to our ancestors and heritage
Our jewellery reveals something about us. Our heritage, history, and culture influence the jewellery we wear and the jewelry we keep. Heirloom jewellery is more than just a piece of metal and stones. It is a symbol of love, heritage and memories. Regardless of their monetary value, these treasures, passed down through generations, hold immense sentimental value, often associated with family traditions, important milestones and special moments in our lives, The special meaning and significance and the memories associated with these pieces transcends time.
These pieces of jewellery tell a story and are a reflection of the lives and loves of those who came before us. Heirloom jewellery reminds us of where we come from, and the people and events that shaped us.
6 Jewellery can be a good investment
Finance expert, Alister Clare from Credit Capital says, “jewellery is not only used for decoration, but certain items can also serve as great investments and will hold their value indefinitely. A jewellery collection can be a great security fund. She adds, “buying jewellery investment pieces, especially the expensive ones, allows you to buy what you love, however you must ensure that you are buying from reputable sources.”
The high demand of diamonds and gold ensures that jewellery holds its value.
Gold is a precious metal, meaning that gold bracelets, rings, and necklaces can easily be melted down and turned into bullion bars or new pieces of jewellery. The value of gold remains relatively stable unlike that of cash, which fluctuates depending on economic factors. Jewellery with high gold content will always have a high value. Even the current global economic crisis is not having an impact on gold prices!