Pavé

Pavé is a type of setting in which the gemstones or pastes are set very close together and no metal is showing from underneath.  They stones are usually very small. The stones are held in place by small pieces of metal pushed over the girdle of the stone.  The stones are often laid out in concentric circles. The word ‘pavé’ comes from the Middle French for ‘pavement’.

There are many fine examples of this setting in antique and period jewelry.

  Russia, c. 1726-1775   Dress Ornament, silver with pave pastes.   British Museum

Russia, c. 1726-1775
Dress Ornament, silver with pave pastes.
British Museum

During the Victorian era, there are a lot of examples of pavé turquoises.

The color of turquoises was reminiscent of forget-me-nots, so would have had special meaning to the Victorians.

 England, c. 1820-1830 Necklace, gold, pave turquoises and half pearls. V&A Museum

England, c. 1820-1830
Necklace, gold, pave turquoises and half pearls.
V&A Museum

  England, 1830-1840   Brooch, gold pave turquoises, rubies, emeralds and pearls   V&A Museum

England, 1830-1840
Brooch, gold pave turquoises, rubies, emeralds and pearls
V&A Museum

Art Nouveau designers were also fond of using Pavé settings.

During the Art Deco era, pavé set diamonds alone or accented with other boldly colored gems were especially popular to the point of being a signature style of the era. 

 

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Pippa Bear