Hi, I’m Jaima, a jewelry stylist who doesn’t mind a bug landing on my shoulder….that is as long as it sparkles and is made of beautiful gems and colorful stones. Yes, I am bug friendly as long as it’s decorative jewelry.
A great place to find vintage insect jewelry is at flea markets, antique shows and estate sales. Insect jewelry has been around for centuries, inspiring and beautifying women of all ages. This past spring, a bug trend surfaced. These bejeweled critters are really classics and never go out of style. Here are a few stories about beetle brooches and a some tips on how to wear them. Personally, I think they are miniature pieces of art. Read on…
Photo courtesy of Mark Platt. Elledecor.com
One insect that is showing up more and more is the Scarab Beetle. It shines in real life but not quite like the gorgeous pin above. Egyptian Scarab Beetles have been popular amulets for over 3000 years. Skipping ahead a few centuries, this insect was a favorite theme in the 1950’s and was often found carved in stones for bracelets, rings and necklaces by the Van Dell company. These were purely decorative pieces where in ancient times, scarab jewelry symbolized:
- Good Luck
Photo by Mark Platt
In the past, scarab pins were given to women for fertility and to men for protection before they went into battle. Also, decorative scarabs were often put into Egyptian tombs to protect the dead from evil spirits. Amenhotep III was a famous Egyptian king who memorialized the Egyptian Scarab Beetle. Today, movies use beetles to replicate historic scenes like in ‘The Mummy”, where millions of scarab beetles fight off and consume the enemies of Amenhotep III. It’s great how we incorporate history into our modern day entertainment and fashion.
Even the color of a scarab pin was important as each color symbolized a hidden meaning.
- Blue was symbolic of the Nile River
- Red represented the sun
- Green symbolized new life
Diamond Scarab Vintage Brooch
Photo Courtesy of ISTDIBS.COM
It’s fun that they are popping back up in fashion. What I love about beetle brooches is that they bring a lot of color, sparkle and interest to fashion. I like to display these critters in different ways. My favorite place to wear a pin is on my shoulder with several other pins together, creating a little cluster. As a scarf collector, I often wear them to hold scarves into place. (so I don’t loose them!) Here are some fashion tips on how to wear these sparkly little bugs.
Wear them on:
- a lapel of a blazer
- the shoulder, with two other pins
- a collar
- a scarf
- a cloth belt
- a cuff of a blazer
- a shoe strap or sandle ( costume of course!)
- a hat
- a handbag or clutch
It’s no wonder I like these beetle brooches. They’re beautiful, colorful and decorative. Who wouldn’t love the little guys!