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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Today's WORD-A-DAY: PASTE


Although often confused with rhinestones and other glass stones, true paste, which began appearing in jewelry in the 18th century, is a special type of glass which was not used as a substitute for precious stones, but as a desirable "gem" in its own right. Paste stones were meticulously cut, and foiled on the bottom to reflect color and sparkle, and were set into closed settings (so the undersides weren't visible) into silver or gold. Pictured here is an 18K gold Georgian paste pin.

2 comments:

Gypsy Trading Company said...

I have heard this term forever, and really did not understand what it meant. I have some old paste jewelry, I will have to dig it out. Question? Is it always set in an 18kt gold, or plating?
Thanks for the great info!

Erica said...

It's usually set in silver. But can be set in anything.
I'll write tomorrow. Hope all is well with you.