Jewelry is everywhere, advertised on TV, magazines and billboards. In many of those advertisements the jewelry is as typical and mainstream as the most recent Billboard hit. It lacks authenticity and character, something that should be innate in your jewelry. Jewelry is a form of self expression and one should be adorned with something that is as unique as they are. It should not be massed produced by a machine but hand crafted and individual. Antique jewelry fits this style. Many of the pieces were handcrafted before the era of machines and so each piece is unique. The pieces are always made well because they have stood the test of time and each comes with its own history and with you, a new future.There are many different styles of antique jewelry, the first to look into is Victorian jewelry. There are three types of Victorian jewelry, Early Victorian, Mid-Victorian and Late Victorian though most jewelers lump them together under the one category. Early Victorian (1837 – 1855) is often inspired by nature designs which would be delicately and intricately etched into gold. Brooches and lockets were the generally the popular pieces of the time often different colored gem stones. Mid-Victorian (1856-1880) corresponds with a time of sorrow as Queen Elisabeth’s husband had died. The designs are known to be solemn and grave to be intune with mourning. The pieces are adorned with heavy, dark stones though they were also considered more creative than the previous Victorian style as they would often feature shells and mosaics. Late Victorian (1885-1900) jewelry is also known as the Aesthetic period featuring feminine designs jeweled with diamonds and bright gemstones. Star and crescent designs were popular during this time.The next style to look into is Nouveau. Nouveau jewelry (1895-1915) is jewelry that features natural designs such as flowers and butterflies. The jewelry often is curved and naturalistic in design and attempts to accentuate the curves of a woman. Nouveau jewelry is often considered the most romantic of all jewelry styles. Sadly it saw it’s decline with mass production of enameled created jewelry though recently it has become a popular form again with vintage jewelry designs and collectors.After the Nouveau period Art Deco jewelry become the popular form of art. Art Deco jewelry (1915 – 1935) is often characterized by a stiff but very stylized design. The style is named after 1925 L’Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Modernes, held in Paris, France. It is inspired by many different cultures including American Indian art, ancient Egyptian art and Greek and Roman architecture. Cubism and Dadaism also influenced Art Deco. The greatest influence came from the unearthing of King Tut’s tomb and the following world tour in the 1970’s. Many of the relics found inside are said to be the inspiration of many jewelers of the time.Antique Jewelry is more than just an adornment that you wear, it is small piece of history with character unmatched by all mass produced jewelry. It is unique and hand made. Check out your local antique dealers at their shops or online and you will be certain to find something that is not only beautiful but also individual. Antique and estate jewelry is more than just jewelry, it’s an expression of yourself.