From 1920 to 1935
The excesses of the Art Nouveau and Garland styles gave way to the bold, simplistic stylization of Art Deco. Jewellery designs of this period were streamlined, geometric, elongated and symmetrical. The stepped profile is the épitomé of the Art Deco form, represented throughout art and architecture, from skyscrapers to jewels. Other exemplary motifs of this period are chevrons and lightning bolts, stylised images of aéroplanes, cars, cruise liners, as well as natural motifs such as seashells, sunrises and flowers.
This was also the time when the Bright colours of exotic gemstones made their way back into jewellery designs : Kashmir sapphires, Burmese rubies, and Old Mine Muzo emeralds. Their vibrant colours were used to provide strong contrasts to the use of platinum and diamonds and the forceful geometric designs.
The period also saw a major technical innovation – Van Cleef & Arpels « Mystery Setting » or Serti Mystérieux. This allowed gemstones to be closely set together by métal tracks hidden beneath the stones, so that no métal could be seen, giving the appearance of a unbroken surface of precious gems.
Boucheron, Cartier, Paul Flato, Janesich, Lacloche, Marchak, Mauboussin, Ostertag and Raymond Yard.