Bakelite Earrings - a Great Introduction to Collecting

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Pile of Multi-coloured Bakelite EarringsMulti-coloured Bakelite Earrings
Blue Moon and Green Hoop and Clip on EarringsBlue Moon and Green
Vintage Bakelite Hoop and Clip on Earrings Red and BlackRed and Black
Yellow and Caramel Earrings in BakeliteYellows, Caramel and Black

My Collection!

Yes, OK, I have far too many!.  But you do need to have all the different colours, and ones to match every bead necklace and every geometric necklace, and every bangle!

And then a few spectacular ones that you can wear on their own.

With the craze for short hair in the 1920s earrings became more important, and began to be made like shoes, a different shape for each ear, whereas before, the right and left would have been interchangeable.  My huge Art Deco sunburst clip-ons are a case in point. 

Bakelite Art Deco Sunburst EarringsHuge Art Deco Sunburst Earrings

A lot of the older earrings will have screw on findings.  Clip-ons were developed in the 1930s as many drops were getting too heavy for the screw on types.  Pierced backs were also available throughout the 1920s and 30s.  Though some women in the 1920s didn't want to get their ears pierced thinking that it was barbaric.

There are many simple earrings which are just a cut half circle with a clip on back, which usually came as part of a set or parure.

Red Bakelite Clip OnsRed Clip Ons
Carved Green Bakelite Screw Back EarringsCarved Green Screw Backs

Bakelite Earring Designs

But there are also lovely carved examples in opaque or clear Bakelite.  A lot of the marbled colours look great in the hoop style of earrings, and there were also dangly ones with various numbers of beads, to match the necklaces. 

Some of the geometric necklaces would have matching ear clips with combinations of Bakelite with Celluloid or metal.  There were also figurals, with animals, fruit, and other objects.  In the "Anything Goes" Jazz era you could dangle pretty much anything from an earlobe! 

Marbled Green Bakelite Art Deco EarringsArt Deco Style Marbled Green and Steel

Earrings are a great way to get started with a collection of Bakelite Jewelry.  They are one of the most affordable and a way for you to get a feel for the colour and weight of the material before you buy more expensive pieces. It's a good idea to learn about testing and identifying early plastics before you start to spend your hard-earned cash!

There are lots on my favourite marketplace, Etsy.  Click into the banner below to have a look around.  

Etsy has a surprisingly good range of Art Deco furniture, interior decor, art and prints, 1920s and 1930s fashion, accessories, jewellery and Bakelite.  Click the banner to explore.  

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