Early Victorian 18kt Swiss Enamel Bracelet w/Locket
Swiss Enamel pieces were commonly produced to be sold as souvenirs for Victorian travelers. A very fine type of enameling, this technique used very intricate detail and often portrayed scenic Swiss Alps villages with streams, mountains and wonderful homes and churches. These serene images were produced by covering a piece of metal in a neutral enameled color. A wonderful detailed picture was then painted on the enameled base and re-fired to set the image. A clear glaze was then applied to the image to preserve it. The pieces were often set in a hollow frame making them very light and comfortable to wear.
This bracelet is an absolutely wonderful example of the Swiss Enamel fine craft! A fabulous piece from the early Victorian period (ca1850), the bracelet is comprised of 9 gold and enameled links and a single larger center link with a beautiful Swiss Enamel picture. Each link is inlaid with rich black and white enamel and set in a hollow 18kt yellow gold frame. The links have alternating shapes but share a similar design with soft enameled flowers, leaves and ornate scrolls. The largest, center link also acts as the bracelets clasp and a nice sized locket. This box-like link looks like a framed picture with the frame carrying a similar complementary design as found in the enameled links. Set within the frame is a wonderful Swiss mountain scene with a waterfall, stream, beautiful skyline, greenery and a small church at the base of a hill. A border of gold, white and orange surrounds the picture, which is oval in shape. On the inside of the locket is an oval shaped piece of mother of pearl and a place to put one of your favorite photos. There are two small hallmarks on the tongue of the clasp however I am unable to make out what they are. Please refer to the photos. This wonderfully elaborate and unusual piece would make a great addition to any collection!
Measurements: The bracelet measures approximately 7 1/4" long. When clasped, the diameter where your wrist would rest, measures approximately 2 1/2" wide and 2 1/8" tall. The links measure approximately 1 1/2" wide by a little less than 3/4" tall and 1 9/16" wide by 1/2" tall. The framed locket link measures approximately 1 7/8" wide, 1 1/2" tall and 5/16" thick.
Condition: The overall condition of the bracelet is excellent. There are a few minor chips in the enamel however this does not at all take away from the beauty of the bracelet. The clasp and locket are secure and in good working condition.