Bulgari, the birth history of ten classic jewelry brands

Sotirio Georgis Bulgari, founder of the Bulgari brand, comes from a family of Greek silversmiths and is an expert in making precious silverware.

Sotirio Europe moved to Italy in the late 19th century and opened its first shop on the Sistina Street in Rome in 1884.

In 1905, Sotirio moved to the Via Condotti, which is now Bulgari’s flagship store.

For more than a century since Bvlgari was founded in Rome, Italy, in 1884, Bvlgari jewelry and accessories have captivated all fashion-loving women with their gorgeous designs.

As a top brand group, Bvlgari includes not only jewelry, but also watches, perfumes and accessories. Its subsidiary Bvlgari Group is now one of the three largest jewelers in the world.

From inception to the 1940s

Sotirio Georgis Bulgari’s first silver work combines traditional elements of Byzantium and Islam with fables, flowers and foliage patterns.

Paris remained the centre of fashion and creative jewellery until the 1950s, which influenced Sotirios for many years: Jewellery from the early 1920s was set in Art Deco platinum, the 1930s were characterized by the size and geometry of diamonds or their combination with colored gemstones.

Detachable jewellery was also popular, but Bulgari’s great and enduring success at the time was the Trombino, a small trumpet ring.

During the Second World War, jewellery pieces were made of gold, saving precious gemstones and making them softer and more natural.

In the late 1940s, Bulgari introduced the SERPENT chain watch: still highly stylized, with an encircling metal hose or gold mesh, the watch has since evolved into many versions and shapes.

The 1950s and 1960s — the color revolution

The post-war boom led to a return to precious white metal, with a stylish diamond-encrusted surface.

Fine jewellery still reeks of Paris, but with more complex patterns and softer lines.

In the 1950s and 1960s, Bulgari introduced a distinctive floral brooch called the TREMBLANT, with a corolla fitted with a spring that quivered the flower’s head.

Egg-cut gemstones are another innovation because they are well suited to lower-value gemstones. “Italian academic” jewellery was born, and the Bulgari style was established.

In the 1970s, innovation was eclectic

The 1970s brought a variety of elements to Bulgari’s designs: angular shapes, bright colors, egg-shaped oval elements, diamond-encrusted gold sets and chains with circular flat links, all forms of fine jewelry, long necklaces, in particular, became fashion icons of the time, and Bulgari inspired a variety of creations: large egg-shaped or carved emeralds from the 17th-century Indian tradition; lotus patterns in Egyptian art; and, reinterpreted with colorful artwork; brooches with a view of Mount Fuji and long necklaces adorned with miniature Buddha pendants in the style of the Far East.
Under the influence of pop art, everyday objects such as playing cards and ice cream were transformed into fun-filled jewelry, and in 1973 as the company expanded in the United States, the Star Spangled Banner series evoked the colors of the American flag.
“Optical” jewelry is used to repeat geometric patterns, alternating between two or three tones. Gold conveyed the concept of wearable jewellery and became Bulgari’s brand identity. As a result, even very expensive jewelry can be worn in a casual way.

The 1980s and 1990s were rich and colorful

The Bulgari design culminates in a recognisable combination of gold, depth, color, simplicity, stylized patterns, precious gems and other subtle elements.
Bulgari jewellery is fully wearable: less traditional, more precious and suitable for any occasion.
The concept was developed through modular jewellery, in which repetitive elements were used in recognisable and powerful designs, such as the PARENTESI series, inspired by lime crevices in the streets of Rome. Short necklaces and hard necklaces combine decorative elements such as diamond emeralds and sapphires.
In 1980, Bulgari also introduced a new way of decorating gems with colored silk satin to enrich his collection.
Jewelry from the 1990s had more subtle color combinations and patterns, necklaces became less structured, diamond tassels fanned out in place of 1980s collars, and gold remained the preferred material.
The collection is also inspired by natural or unconventional materials: the Naturalia series features fish or shells, while the Chandra series incorporates spherical white porcelain elements and is embossed.

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