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Expert in vintage costume jewelry from the 1920s, 1930s, 1940s & 1950s

Trifari leaf brooch & earrings set
'Jeweleaf' brooch
'Jeweleaf' earrings
Another view of Trifari earrings
Back of 'Jeweleaf' brooch
Maker's mark on brooch
Back of 'Jeweleaf' earrings
Maker's mark on earrings
Design patent for Trifari leaf brooch

Sapphire & Diamanté 'Jeweleaf' Trifari Brooch & Earrings Set


MAKER: Trifari

SIZE: Brooch: 2 3/8" x 1 7/8"; earrings: 1 1/8" x 1"

CONDITION: Excellent

DATE: c.1951-1952

MARKS: Brooch: "TRIFARI PAT. PEND"; earrings: "TRIFARI" (with crown)

REFERENCE: Design patent D166,347 issued to Alfred Philippe in 1952 (application filed in 1951);1952 magazine ad

This Trifari leaf brooch and ear clips set was named Jeweleaf. Designed by Alfred Philippe in 1951, it features diamanté-paved maple leaves outlined with sapphire-glass baguettes. The setting is rhodium-plated base metal. The pin closes with a roll-over safety clasp. An all-diamanté version, described as “platinum-toned … paved with stones” and “one of two charming variations on a Spring theme”, was advertised in the February 1, 1952 issue of Vogue. The brooch was $17.50, and the earrings were $15.00, for a total of $32.50. (In 1950, the average U.S. family’s income was $81.50 per week.) Note that the photo of the brooch alone shows it in the position indicated in the design patent (last photo), but you can wear the jewel in any position you wish.

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Sapphire & Diamanté 'Jeweleaf' Trifari Brooch & Earrings Set

$245.00 USD
Why Buy Vintage Costume Jewelry?

One reason is that it’s environmentally friendly. Resale fashion and vintage jewelry has become a preferred sustainable and affordable shopping choice by today’s discerning fashion and eco-conscious consumer.

Another major reason is the quality. Although vintage costume jewelry was made for all levels of the marketplace – from dime stores to high-end fashion boutiques and jewelry stores – you will find only the best pieces here. They were well-designed and carefully made to last. The manufacturers represented here used only the finest materials – glass stones and beads from Bohemia, Austria, and France, and faux pearls from France and Japan. Settings were primarily sterling silver, gold-filled, or base metals heavily plated with gold, silver, or rhodium. Stones were hand-set, and pieces were hand-finished.

The northeastern part of the U.S. was the center of the industry, with the largest companies located in Providence, Rhode Island by the end of World War II. During the Depression, the quality of costume pieces climbed to new levels when many jewelers and craftsmen had to switch to this segment of the industry. In addition, it attracted many skilled workers who fled the political situation in Europe for the U.S. For these reasons, designs and manufacturing techniques rivaled those employed in the making of fine jewelry.

A third reason to buy costume jewelry is its uniqueness. Having survived for so many decades in such wonderful condition and having been selected for their aesthetic quality, the pieces you’ll find here are unlikely to be found elsewhere.

True vs Fake - how to shop vintage costume jewelry with confidence

Barbara Schwartz, a noted costume jewelry historian, is the author of "True vs Fake" , an in-depth blog series providing examples of how vintage costume jewelry can be accurately attributed. She also shares tips on how to avoid being duped into buying misidentified vintage costume jewelry.