Flower Designs in Antique Essex Crystal

Having spent some time among the animals and birds, why don’t we stroll through an Essex crystal flower garden?



antique Essex crystal multi floral parasol handleThis charming Victorian piece is actually a parasol handle! Made of gold and accented with diamonds, it is mounted so as to display six different flowers. We can see a daisy, an iris, and a red carnation – but what are the others? The carving is so fine that one can almost think that the flowers (and bee!) are real.



Victorian Essex crystal white rose parasol handleAnother Victorian parasol handle in an entirely different shape, displaying a single white rose. According to the very limited description, a second crystal on the reverse (not photographed) shows a red carnation. Surely this was a favorite for milady to carry when strolling down the boulevards.



Essex crystal butterfly and bellflowers broochAn 18k gold brooch, 1 3/8″ diameter, showing a butterfly and a spray of bellflowers surrounded by a rich blue enamel border; definitely Victorian.



reverse carved crystal roses and forget me nots basket broochThis vintage 14k brooch is 1 3/4″ wide and has an unusual gold-wire border resembling a spring. The basket of roses and forget-me-nots is a classic motif that is still repeated in modern-day reproductions.



Essex crystal pansy broochPansies and violets are among my favorite flowers. This 18k gold Victorian brooch has Austrian hallmarks and is 7/8″ in diameter.




Essex crystal forget me not and bow motif earringsForget-me-nots reappear in this pair of earrings (one sadly with a broken earwire) with a bow motif at the top. Dimensions and dating unknown but possibly early 1900s.




two Essex crystal botanical pendantsThese two charming botanical motif pendants are undated and unfortunately un-measured as well.



antique Essex crystal lily of the valley pendantA gorgeously detailed bouquet of lily of the valley graces this gold pendant with milgrain edge and bale trim. Just the right touch!



Essex crystal autumn flowers broocAutumn flowers in multiple colors appear in this 18k gold brooch set with old mine cut diamonds and ringed with small pearls. Dimensions are 1 1/3″ x just shy of 1″.



vintage reverse carved white flower brooch 1918From its design you might guess this to be modern-day, but it isn’t: the mother of pearl back is engraved “Marie-Anne 1 October 1918”. What did this charming gold brooch commemorate?




antique Essex crystal good luck pendantPerhaps used as a watch fob, this pendant was designed to bring the best of luck, because the four carvings include a four-leaf clover and white heather. It is made with 15k gold and is about 1/2″ squre. The unusual (to us) gold content also helps to date the piece to the Victorian era, and probably British in origin.



Essex crystal and sterling antique perfume bottleAnother dated piece (October 19, 1914), this is a hallmarked sterling silver scent-bottle cap.



reverse carved glass flower basket broochThe final item in this bakers’ dozen is a reproduction, simply for comparison purposes. It is one of many examples of this design of a flower basket flanked by floral half-moons, produced as costume jewelry in the 1940s and for decades after. These are glass, not rock crystal, and the workmanship is miles away from that of the fine Victorian pieces; they rightfully sell for about 1% of the price of the fine Victorian “Essex crystal” examples above.

Other posts in this Essex crystal series:

  3 comments for “Flower Designs in Antique Essex Crystal

  1. June 18, 2016 at 8:56 am

    Love it! In fact, I love all the Essex Crystal in this blog including the earrings, perfume bottle topper, etc. 🙂

  2. Michelle Strateman
    March 24, 2021 at 4:07 pm

    I would love to find the ladybug pendant. Are you able to guide me? Thank you! Michelle.

    • March 26, 2021 at 1:42 pm

      Unfortunately, I have no specific sources for any of the examples shown. Your best bet would be to set up an “alert” at one or more of the auction-house compilation sites, such as liveauctioneers.com and invaluable.com (in the USA) or thesaleroom.com (in the UK) using ‘essex crystal pendant’ as the search term, because the ladybug is only one of several designs on this piece. The example here was sold at auction at Fieldings, in the UK.

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