Memorial Hair Jewellery

“Hair is at once the most delicate and lasting of our materials, and survives us, like love. It is so light, so gentle, so escaping from the idea of death, that with a lock of hair belonging to a child or friend, we may almost look up to heaven and compare notes with the angelic nature-may almost say, ‘I have a piece of thee here, not unworthy of thy being now.”
The Godey’s Lady’s Book of May 1855

Diamonds made of ashes are only the latest iteration of a history of mourning jewellery that spans back to the 17th century. Queen Victoria was responsible for making mourning jewellery extremely popular after the death of Prince Albert. Mourning jewellery was typically made of jet and often included pictures of the deceased. Also common was jewellery made from the woven hair of the deceased. During the American civil war creating memorial jewellery out of woven hair became quite a popular, if somber, activity.

Some Victorian hair jewellery has lasted this last century and is still available as an example of Queen Victoria’s great romance and sentimentality.

Braided Hair Bracelet

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