Charm bracelets are bigger than they have ever been right now, but have you ever wondered where they come from?
The history of charms dates back thousands of years, beginning as simple amulets that would ward off evil spirits. The first recognisable charm bracelets appeared with the Egyptians, who saw charms as symbols of faith, luck and status, and also thought they would serve to identify people to the gods in the afterlife. Charms were often used to signify religious beliefs – Christians would secretly carry a fish symbol with them to identify them to other Christians, whilst Jewish scholars would wear amulets containing rolled up scripts, in order to carry Jewish law close to their hearts at all times. During the Medieval period, knights wore charms to protect them in battle, and they began to represent family origins and professions as well.
Charms began to go out of fashion as people became more educated and less superstitious with the advent of mass-produced books during the Renaissance. However, in the early 20th century, Queen Victoria inspired a fashion craze for decorative charm bracelets among the European noble classes by herself wearing a collection of locket charms containing family portraits on a bracelet. During World War Two, soldiers would send home trinkets made by local craftsmen in the areas they had been posted. In the 1950s, charm bracelets became incredibly popular in America, and today there is a huge demand for vintage charms from this era.
Nowadays there are a huge variety of ways to wear charms, from the traditional hanging style of Thomas Sabo, through to the modern European interpretations of Pandora and Trollbeads, whose beaded bracelets provide really wearable pieces of jewellery that play with the charm concept. Scarlett creates symbolic charm beads engraved with meaningful words and phrases. The Italian take on the charm bracelet has proved enduringly popular with young and old, men and women alike – Nomination bracelets feature a simple band with interchangeable charm links, with thousands of diverse links to choose from.
Charms don’t just live on your bracelet either – there are now necklaces, anklets, earrings and many other ways to incorporate your charm accessories. Spinning Jewelry is are one of the latest charm ranges to develop a new way to customise your jewellery, with a range of stackable rings and bangles that you can mix and match to your heart’s content.
Here at fabulous, we love charm bracelets because they allow you to express your own individuality and style really easily – there’s a charm for everyone, and a different way to wear it too. We also love the idea that you can build a picture of your life – your memories and milestones, the people, places and things that you love, and your own personality – and take it with you wherever you go. It grows with you, changing as your life changes, and makes the perfect, timeless keepsake.