A very unusual piece, this cut steel brooch dates from the Georgian period, likely the early 1800s, but possibly before.
Cut steel pieces are typically made up of tiny faceted steel pins that are riveted into plates. Cut steel has been used in buckles, buttons, and sword decorations, as well as in jewelry.
In the mid 18th century when King Louis XV of France asked the wealthy to donate their precious gems and jewelry to help fund the Seven Years War, cut steel became a popular alternative.
Since each piece had to be made by hand, it was a tedious process, and there was an opportunity for great craftsmanship and skill to be exemplified in the finest pieces.
This piece is one of the finer brooches I have encountered. The rivets are exceptionally small. Three circles, one larger in the middle, feature tiny cut steel rivets in concentric circle designs with squares at the center. Two asymmetric drops dangle from the center circle.
I have never seen anything quite like this! It is an incredibly unique, one of a kind piece!
+++ Measurements +++
2 5/8" long
Larges circle is 1 1/8" tall
+++ Condition +++
Lovely condition overall with some patina to the steel, though I did not see any rust. It is important to store in a dry place and not get this piece wet, as cut steel does have a tendency to rust.
I noticed one small rivet missing, but it is not at all noticeable.
+++ Please read +++
This item is not new, and as such, it has wear commensurate with age. As with all older vintage and antique items, please handle with care.
All items are sold as-is, and I do my best to point out all condition issues and provide a detailed description and photographs.
Unless specified, items have not been cleaned.
I do not accept returns or offer refunds. Please see all photos, read the entire description, and ask any questions before purchasing.