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

Sceptron brooch & earrings with faux sapphires & diamantes
Rose vermeil brooch w/faux sapphires & diamantes
Sceptron 1940s brooch in horizontal position
Close-up view of brooch center
Faux sapphire & diamante matching earrings
Front view of screw-back earrings
Brooch back
Maker's marks
Earring backs

Sapphire, Diamanté & Rose Vermeil Sceptron Brooch & Earrings


MAKER: Sceptron

SIZE: Brooch: 3 7/8" x 1 7/8"; earrings: 3/4" x 7/8"

CONDITION: Excellent

DATE: c.1945-1946 (based on use of sterling and catalog reference)


REFERENCE: Bennett Brothers 1945 catalog

This Sceptron brooch with matching earrings feature rose-gold-plated sterling silver set with large, faceted, triangular sapphire-glass stones and diamanté accents. This set is a wonderful example of the Retro Modern style of the 1940s. I couldn’t decide if the brooch should be worn horizontally or vertically until I saw Anne Baxter wearing one like it in the 1946 movie Angel on my Shoulder. Hers was perfectly placed in the vertical position at the base of her V-neckline. She even wore the matching earrings. The pin has a roll-over safety clasp, and the earrings are screw-backs. I’ve included a photo of the brooch in the horizontal position, so you can decide if you prefer it that way. A similar piece was shown in a 1945 wholesaler’s catalog. The page was entitled “New Pink Gold Finish on Sterling Silver — Styled by Master Craftsmen” (who were not named). The brooch was $28.50 retail, and the earrings were $13.50, or $42.00 for the set. (While I don’t have income statistics for the mid-1940s, to put these prices in perspective, the U.S. government reported that by 1950, the average American household’s weekly income was about $81.) This well-made set was not inexpensive.

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Sapphire, Diamanté & Rose Vermeil Sceptron Brooch & Earrings

$375.00 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.