The Roaring '20s

Design Idea GA18 Jewelry Harness and Earrings

by Barbara van Look, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and BeadsĀ®

1920s Women's Accessories: The Jazz Age and Flapper Influences on Jewelry

Talkies. The Charleston. Clara Bow. Finger waves. Boardwalk Empire. Speakeasies. Charles Lindbergh. Art Deco. The Great Gatsby.

Jazz Age-inspired fashion is showing up on the catwalks of designers such as Gucci, Ralph Lauren, Armani, Chloe, Marchesa and Roberto Cavalli. The Roaring Twenties are back: look for elements of 1920s styles in accessories and jewelry for the coming year, sending style on a Jazz Age-inspired road straight to Flapper-ville. Think 1920s vintage-inspired jewelry, flapper accessories, flapper earrings and vintage rings. Be inspired by this Jazz Age jewelry and bring the roaring twenties into jewelry designs for a flapper-inspired flair.

The Flapper and Her Style

The Roaring '20s The Roaring '20s

The Flapper was a brash, wisecracking woman who flouted the social and political conventions of her time. She smoked, danced and walked into a speakeasy like she owned the place. Born out of the social, political and cultural turbulence between World War I and World War II, the Flapper wore heavy makeup and a distinct fashion style.

Flapper fashion showcased short hair, long fringe, drop-waist dresses, cloche hats, long strands of beads or pearls knotted at the sternum, finger-waved hairstyles, headbands with feathers and other iconic imagery. Designs and patterns on clothing and accessories were also influenced by new scientific understanding as well as archaeological discoveries from ancient Egypt (King Tut), Sumeria (Royal Cemetery of Ur), Central America (Chichen Itza) and the Roman empire.

Flapper fashion added easy-to-wear style for women with comfortable boxy clothing and the addition of sportswear to the circle of acceptable outerwear for public appearances. It also introduced the high-heeled shoe and strappy pump.

Get the Look

The femininity of the Flapper is all in the accessories. Offer 1920s inspired accessories the customers can slip into their wardrobes to showcase elements of flapper-chic without looking like it's a costume.
  • 1920s Inspired Jewelry
    The Roaring '20s The Roaring '20s The Roaring '20s

    The Art Deco movement provided design inspiration for jewelry during the Roaring '20s, along with plenty of sparkle. Rhinestones, Crystal Passions® crystals and hex-cut seed beads were frequently used in jewelry to capture the eye.

    Flappers frequently wore Art Deco-inspired brooches on their fur collars and cloche hats, as well as long continuous strands of pearls or round beads, gem-studded bracelets and lariat necklaces with tasseled ends. Wide bracelets, both cuff and memory wire styles, were popular.

    The Roaring '20s The Roaring '20s Design Idea B63X Ring

    Earrings were seldom worn due to the short or "bobbed" hairstyle, with accompanying hats, headbands, scarves, turban wraps and headdresses covering the ears. When earrings were worn, demure small posts were for daytime while extravagant chandelier styles sometimes appeared with evening wear.

  • 1920s Inspired Headwear
    Design Idea 8B5L Hat

    The cloche hat and the feathered headband are iconic elements of the Flapper's style. The close-fitting cloche hat was often accented with a brooch, ribbon, scarf, silk flower or other adornment; the headband typically sparkled with sequins and beads while supporting a bobbing vertical feather. Headbands could go around the head like a hatband, or over the top of head like a schoolgirl's headband.

    Design Idea D87M Headband

  • 1920s Inspired Accessories
    The Roaring '20s The Roaring '20s Design Idea C23Y Shawl

    Other popular accessories for the Flapper were delicate mesh handbags, fringed piano shawls, fur or feather drapes, T-strap shoes, peek-a-boo heels with metallic accents and stockings with embellished garters. Color-blocking with Art Deco-inspired patterns (just think of the Chrysler Building in New York City), subtle fur trims and long fringe edging can introduce Jazz Age-style into modern fashions without going over the top.
Design with ... Additional Resources ...

Customer Comments

The Roaring We would like to share some of the customer comments we received in response to the article "The Roaring '20s," as featured in an email newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

"Fabulous, very interesting ... love fashion trends from earlier decades."
- Tracy

"Very informative. It gave me loads of great ideas thanks for the work you put into research."
- Margie

"I would have liked to see some patterns or examples. Thank you."
- Diane

"Would love to have seen some images to this article for a little inspiration."
- Anonymous