Art Deco Elegance: Star Sapphire Engagement Ring of the Week


Art Deco Star Sapphire Ring from Doyle & Doyle

The newest Engagement Ring of the Week is inspired by the fantastic exhibition, Elegance in an Age of Crisis: Fashions of the 1930s, currently on view at the Fashion Institute of Technology’s museum. The exhibition provides an overview of both women’s and men’s fashions of the 1930s, a pivotal decade that introduced the first truly modern clothing and accessories. Our 1930s Art Deco star sapphire and diamond ring, with its dramatic proportions and streamlined details, is a perfect compliment to the beautiful clothing on display.

Art Deco Star Sapphire Ring from Doyle & Doyle

You may be wondering why this type of stone is called a star sapphire. These special gemstones have a unique internal structure that creates the rayed “star” of light that you can see in its depths. This effect is caused by asterism, a phenomenon where tiny needle shaped inclusions in the stone are aligned at intersecting angles, reflecting the light in a unique way. Sapphires that exhibit strong asterism are cut as high domed cabochons to bring out the color and star, instead of being faceted for sparkle like their clearer counterparts.

This striking ring is beautiful on its own, but don’t assume that you can’t pair it with a wedding band. We like a little space between the engagement ring and wedding band, it gives each ring space to stand out. Try pairing an Art Deco wedding band, like this diamond studded one, to highlight the sapphire ring’s glittering details.

Art Deco Star Sapphire Ring from Doyle & Doyle

Art Deco means more than just flappers. Comparing the fashion and jewelry in this post to the pieces in our 1920s post, you’ll see a dramatic shift in shape and silhouette from one decade to the next. The androgynous, dropped waist looks of the 1920s gave way to longer styles that elegantly skim the body and highlight a woman’s natural shape. We love that FIT also included period men’s fashions, such as dapper tuxedos and deconstructed suits. Time to pull out the cufflinks!

FIT 1930s Fashion Exhibition

Jewelry designers continued the fashion for glamorous white jewelry that started at the turn of the century, but the shapes and detailing changed in the 1930s. Following the prevailing trend for streamlined geometry, they put aside the fanciful filigree of the early Art Deco period in favor of bold, graphic designs. Pops of color, like our emerald three stone ring and ebony drop earrings, make a striking counterpoint to sparkling white diamonds.

1930s gowns and jewelry

Exhibition curator Patricia Mears discusses the cultural factors that affected fashion, and by extension jewelry, design in the 1930s:

It is a compelling irony that the elegant and progressive qualities of 1930s fashions emerged during one of the most tumultuous periods of modern western history. Set between the stock market crash in 1929 and the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939, this decade was a startling paradox, as the title of this exhibition suggests. Yet despite these crises—or maybe in reaction to them—culture during the Great Depression was not only elegant, but also buoyant, effervescent, and escapist.

Along with the classical revival, influences that led to a new, modern style of clothing were advances in textile technology and a strong reliance on craftsmanship. Inspired by the bourgeoning, streamlined aesthetic and enriched by the growth of softer materials, innovative tailors and dressmakers began to construct clothing without padding and boning.

Elegance in an Age of Crisis: Fashions of the 1930s is on view at FIT until April 19, 2014. Our 1930s collection of jewels, including the star sapphire and diamond ring, can be seen everyday!

1930s fashion dresses



Shop the Story

Contact Information

* Required Fields