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Do You Know Filigree Designs When You See Them?

Western style jewelry has many different components and design styles. Often pieces are referred to as having filigree elements, but what does this mean exactly? Filigree is a type of metal crafting where delicate threads of silver, gold or other metals are twisted and entwined into designs which resemble lace. Through braiding and curling thin, pliable metal threads together, and joining them through soldering techniques, there is no limit to what can be created with this unique style. 

This art form has been around since the early days of civilization, most notably in ancient and Persia (the Middle East). It has been found in cultures around the world throughout history. Filigree is at its core about creating something from thin metal threads, with an intricate design. This technique has been used for jewelry, to embellish manuscripts, architectural features, and even armor. When the ancient Greeks learned the craft, they began to add in gemstones to their filigree creations. 

The addition of gemstones, along with the finely tuned skill needed to craft filigree items, made these pieces a symbol of elegance, and costly for the average wearer to obtain. Filigree designs reached their peak of high fashion popularity in the early 20th Century, when King Edward VII of England had the brilliant idea of intertwining different metals into filigree pieces. This brought more color and flare to this already specialized metal craft. 

With the modern era, filigree jewelry became more readily available with the advent of machinery which can readily mass produce pieces, making them more affordable. Filigree still exists as a hand-crafted art form though, an incredible skill for a jeweler to have. The endless design possibilities with filigree is what keeps this style of jewelry in demand today.

If you love Western Style jewelry like I do, I invite you to check out our products, West Coast Cowgirl, where you will find a wide variety of jewelry options, from classic motifs to more modern cowgirl bling. Whether you are looking for a gift for that special someone or ready to treat yourself to something new, products are added regularly so be sure to check back often.