There are things in modern life that are certainties; death, taxes, and of course the autumn/ winter fashion designers rule which states that either army fatigues, the ‘Gothic look’ or head to toe tartan will be the next big thing (oh, and that some colour other than black will be the new ‘black’).
This year it’s tartans turn back on the runways (you can see some stunning Saint Laurent, Mulberry, Givenchy, Versace collections
here). And if you happen to love tartan then why not finish your look with some rather gorgeous pieces of Scottish jewellery? Here are some beauties to wet the apatite…
This Scottish agate brooch is a real genuine antique, and dates from around the 1880s. Jewellery made from agate and quartz gemstones found in Scotland has been around for hundreds of years.
Another antique Scottish agate brooch from around the late 19th to early 20th Century. Old Scottish jewellery has a big following around the world, and many experts can even tell what part of Scotland the agate came from just by looking at at.
An antique Scottish agate axe brooch, circa 1880s. Most antique Scottish agate jewellery was set into either base metals, gilt, un-hallmarked silver, or occasionally gold. A simple ‘925’ stamp on Scottish jewellery is generally only found on post 1950s silver tone pieces.
In times gone by, Scottish agates were used to make brooches, necklaces, bangles and pendants, like this tiny Victorian cross charm.
A collection of old Scottish agate jewellery. From top: a vintage 1970s brooch with huge yellow centre stone, a 1920s silver dirk pin in the shape of a tiny dagger, and a tiny early Victorian cross brooch.
A stunning example of an antique Scottish agate brooch, made from a variety of agates found around Scotland’s coastline. Note the perfectly flush settings – found in only the best examples of the genre.
Scottish jewellery has never gone out of fashion. The real stuff can be expensive, but fear not – there are some gorgeous costume jewellery imitations available. This vintage modernist style brooch was made in the 1970s, and uses a real agate set into base metal.
Even the famous vintage costume jewellery designers of the 1950s and 60s brought out collections that imitated Scottish agate jewellery, including ‘Exquisite’ and ‘Hollywood’. The stones were made from colourful glass, and set into base metal.
A circa 1980s imitation Scottish agate brooch, set into bronze tone metal
Celtic knot work (as seen on this stunning circa 1980s brooch) is a sign that the brooch was made post 1960s – older Scottish agate jewellery was decorated with non-Celtic scroll work and typical Victorian flourishes.
Iona stone from Scotland is a popular choice for Scottish agate lovers (as seen in these lovely earrings)
Real Scottish agate bracelets and bangles are rare and cost hundreds of pounds, so if you’re on a budget why not treat yourself to a costume jewellery imitation? Prices start from about a tenner.
One of the most famous modern makers of Scottish agate jewellery is the ‘Miracle’ company, who make both costume jewellery pieces and high quality fine silver reproductions.
Thistles are the emblem of Scotland, and when seen in jewellery the flower part often made of quartz from the country.
This beautiful Scottish thistle brooch is made by another famous jewellery company called
Heathergems. The stone isn’t a real ‘stone’ at all – learn more here!
Buckle motiffs never date. This fabulous vintage Scottish agate brooch is fully articulated, and was made in the Victorian period circa 1870s. Love it!