Edwardian Inspiration

Emerging during the reign of Edward VII, the Edwardian or “garland style” was inspired by the lavish court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. Featuring garlands of laurel leaves, delicate flowers, pendulous tassels, and lacy cobweb patterns, this precise but fluid style was amplified by the extravagant use of diamonds and the almost exclusive use of white. White diamonds and natural pearls were flaunted in white gold or platinum filigree settings.

Famed courtesan Liane de Pougy and her Sapphic sisters piled on their tiaras, breastplates, brooches, necklaces and elaborate hair ornaments. The Collier du Chien, or dog collar, a broad choker fitted snugly around the neck, was made vogue by Queen Alexandra whose own Cartier-designed collar hid a scar on her slender neck. Imitation diamonds made of glass paste or strass set in silver were commissioned as traveling jewels for the well-to-do and provided an accessible alternative for the emerging New Woman.

Further Reading:

Bejewelled by Tiffany: 1837-1987, Clare Phillips, 2006

Tiaras: A History of Splendor, Geoffrey C. Munn, 2001

View the Wanton Edwardian collection >