There’s always tons of excitement in July – the long weekend of the 4th, music festivals, outdoor activities, beach excursions and long summer nights.
So, in the jewelry world, it’s only fitting that the stone of the month is the fiery ruby.
Among natural gems, only diamond is harder, one reason for the ruby’s popularity in a variety of jewelry styles.
In Victorian jewelry, rubies were set in the heads of snake rings; in Art Nouveau pieces, which are often nature-inspired, they were set to resemble the petals of flowers; and you’ll see rubies often in Retro jewelry, boldly set in yellow or rose gold
Below, a look back in time to where (and how!) the ruby was worn:
It’s widely circulated that Queen Victoria’s wedding band was a snake biting its own tail. Whether or not this factoid is true, we may never know, but what I do know for sure is that there are tons of snake rings to be found (in a variety of styles) from the Victorian era.
They are often set with precious stones in their eyes or on top of their heads, and this particular one is set with a ruby, as well as a diamond and a sapphire.
There was a period of time during the Victorian era when jewelers were fixated on the design techniques of the Etruscans (ancient Romans). This 18k yellow gold necklace showcases both this design inspiration and beautiful old cut bezel set rubies.
Art Nouveau Era
Art Nouveau jewels are rife with organic shapes and motifs. A bright ruby (the color of flowers, fruits and other natural delicacies), only enhances this naturalistic beauty, as seen with these two curvaceous Art Nouveau pieces.
Due to the dearth of platinum and other jewelry materials during the Retro era (which spans World War II, from 1940 to 1950), jewelers used alternative metals such as yellow and rose gold, and alternative stones such as citrines, amethysts and, of course, rubies.
Their lack was our gain, because ruby jewelry from this era is always some of the boldest.
With the Heirloom by Doyle & Doyle line, we take inspiration from the motifs and designs of some of our most favorite antique pieces and fashion them anew. A great example are these serpent earrings, accented with ruby drops.
With all these great examples, it should be easy (or very, very hard if you are indecisive like me!) to add a ruby jewel to your collection.