It is rare to find an example of this variety of chatelaine as French jet, being glass, is easily damaged. The appendages include a seal and watch key and a glazed watch case – but there is currently no watch included. Jay’s of Regent Street, London, specialized in such accessories. The French jet is attached to blackened metal to create these objects. The watch outer case is also covered with jet and has a glass back which opens for placement for the watch and a space through which to pass the watch bow to attach to the chatelaine. The interior is velvet-lined for the watch. This would be a lovely accompaniment to the Mantilla Hair Comb that we currently have on this site and in the future there will also be a Jet Tiara! It is fairly frequent to find French Jet beads, bangles and the occasional brooch that could also add to a Victorian display on an appropriate gown. Although these items were made for mourning and worn particularly in the United Kingdom during the time of mourning by Queen Victoria for her beloved Prince Albert, they are also a stunning accessory when used against other contrasting colours and as such can be easily worn today. The condition of this chatelaine is excellent for age and its medium but it is missing a couple of glass facets on the watch case (see image) and the blackened metal is slightly worn is spots. Despite this, this is a remarkable survivor from the Victorian era and would grace any collection of unusual jewellery, jet or watch holders. Length 6 ins. (15.2cm). Weight 54 grams. This item appears in my books “Chatelaines, Utility to Glorious Extravagance” and “How the Watch was Worn, A Fashion for 500 Years”.
An Author’s enticing collection of Special Boxes, Chatelaines, Watches and Fashion / Accessories.
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