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Trifari Vintage Rhinestone, Simulant Gems Costume Jewelry Review

Updated on January 15, 2015

Trifari Rhinestones

Of all the materials Trifari employ in their jewelry, rhinestone must be the most characteristic, the most representative. Also known as diamante, or diamond simulants, rhinestones possess visual properties akin to those of real diamonds: translucency and sparkle.

Naturally, they don't refract light in as iridescent a fashion as actual stones do – but that quality Trifari (and other jewelry makers as well) learned to employ to their advantage, producing series upon series of sets, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, pendants, and other jewelry types that by today became vintage classics.

The variety of cuts, sizes, and colors is seemingly infinite. The only limitations that could interfere in creating with rhinestones are those in the minds of the designer Alfred Philippe and his successors – and they went to great lengths to produce original and classic jewelry. Trifari's today's status of a desirable vintage, costume fashion brand proves their attitude paid off.

Trifari Vintage Costume Jewelry | Rhinestone Earrings
Trifari Vintage Costume Jewelry | Rhinestone Earrings


Rhinestones were meant to imitate such gemstones as emeralds and rubies, so cuts used for these gems often recur in rhinestone pieces. Specifically, various rectangular, as well as circular and baguette shapes can be found on different items – sometimes all at once on just one jewel. For instance, a brooch (designed as a flower) with large square emerald simulant stone in the center can be surrounded by a scattering of small circular rhinestones.

Geometrical shapes that add facets, and consequently more opportunities to refract light and sparkle, become very common, and enhance among the company's most popular models.

Cabochons, Enamel

Rhinestones are also very adaptive and flexible – they interact well with glass and cabochon stones (being a type of glass themselves) and, create interesting liaisons with such unexpected materials as enamel.

Enamel, followed by silver and gold plated alloys, can exert a restraining effect on rhinestone jewelry, giving the sparkle a balancing opaque act that results in more textural, visual, and overall aesthetic depth.


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