Vintage Retro Moderne 14k gold 2.64 carats of genuine blue zircon and cultured pearl brooch pin signed Binder Brothers, INC. Measures 1-1/4" in diameter, weighs a sturdy 7.5 grams. Features 8 round faceted genuine blue zircons securely mounted into 5 prong settings, each 4mm in diameter x 2.5mm in depth (.33 ct, 2.64 cttw). A single round 6mm diameter creamy pink iridescent pearl accents the center, in a six prong setting. With raised textured leaf stations in between each gem. Fold over safety clasp pin back assembly. Completely original with no alterations or repairs. Hallmarked and maker marked "14K BB" on the back. In excellent well cared for condition, circa 1940-1960. Please note- it is the natural character of genuine blue zircons in vintage pieces, to show "flea bites" or tiny abrasions that typically occur along the facet junctions. This is actually one identifying factor of natural zircon in vintage and antique jewels.
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Blue zircon is a NATURALLY occurring gemstone that many people have heard of, but few have seen. Credit for the following to GIAgrams: "This is mostly because of colorless zircon’s wide use as a diamond simulant in the early 1900s. It was long ago replaced in that role by more convincing look-alikes, but its name still means “imitation” to many people. That’s unfortunate because zircon is a beautiful NATURAL colored stone with its own fair share of folklore and charm. In the Middle Ages, this gem was thought to induce sound sleep, drive away evil spirits, and promote riches, honor, and wisdom. Many scholars think the stone’s name comes from the Arabic word zarkun, meaning “cinnabar” or “vermilion.” Others believe the source is the Persian word zargun, or “gold colored.” Considering zircon’s color range, either derivation seems possible. Blue zircon was a particular favorite in Victorian times, when fine gems were often featured in English estate jewelry dating from the 1880s. Gemologist George Kunz—Tiffany’s famed gem buyer—was a notable zircon advocate. He once proposed the name “starlite” to promote the gem’s fiery nature. The name never caught on. "
About the maker, courtesy American Jewelry Manufacturers by Dorothy T. Rainwater. Binder Brothers, Incorporated- New York, New York. Prior to 1919, Binder Brothers, incorporated were the exclusive American agents for Ernest Gideon Bek, Inc., Pforzeim, Germany. Following WW1 Binder Brothers purchased the Bek stock from the alien custodians who had taken it over, they have manufactured, imported and had made up exclusively under their own trademark, jewelry, watchbands, sterling novelties and jewelry. Oswald L. Binder, co-founder and former president, died August 10, 1977 having retired in 1974. The company advertisements can be found in the trade publication Jewelers Circular- Keystone from 1922 forward. The company makers mark consists of "BB" within concentric circles.
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