Caroline's Jewelry with a Past is offering a sterling silver brooch by Los Castillo of Taxco c. 1945. This ornate and bold pre-Eagle (before 1948) piece features curled swirls and ribbons gathered together by a half moon center accented by applied ball decorations. The brooch has oxidization which highlights the depths of the swirls. The early flowing style of this piece suggests this is either the design of Margot van Voorhies Carr (Margot de Taxco) or her influence when she was at Los Castillo. It is similar to her design #5382, called "Curled Leaf, although, it has elements of her other designs. The brooch is 2-1/2" tall X 1-3/4" wide (maximum dimensions). There is a brooch fixture with a safety style clasp. The piece weighs 16.8 grams. It is marked "Los Castillo" + "Taxco" + "Sterling" + "Made in Mexico" + design number #792.
The Los Castillo workshop was founded in Taxco Mexico in 1939 by the Castillo brothers, Antonio, Coco and Chato, along with Antonio's wife Margot van Voorhies Carr (later Margot de Taxco), and their cousin Salvador Teran. The brothers had worked for William Spratling during the 1930's. Margot did a number of the early Los Castillo designs until she left about 1949 to start her own business. Los Castillo is still in business and is the longest continuously operating silversmith in Taxco. Design and craftsmanship have always been a hallmark of the workshop.
The silver content of this piece has been tested using standard accepted testing methods, such as acid testing. The silver is marked "Sterling".
When you own vintage handmade jewelry, you wear a design that is unique and represents the artist's vision. It is made by a skilled craftsman and can have features which are only found in this piece. The jewelry may exhibit the marks of the craftsman. It will not be perfect. This piece has been lightly polished to better show the oxidation accenting.
Smashing Los Castillo Brooch #792 c. 1945