Cannetille is a technique of gold work where the aim was maximizing the overall look and effect with a minimum of actual gold. More importantly, the visual texture and surfaces are like no other jewelry before or since.
First utilized during the Napoleonic wars when gold was surrendered to the war efforts, this type of work lasted several decades from around 1810-1830. It differs from filigree work in that it is more three dimensional rather than flat.
These are very fine examples and with a versatile length. Constructed in two parts, there are 6 faceted amethysts in each earring, a total of 12 in all. Their glittering royal purple of 4.5 carats in total plays counterpoint to the bright 18k yellow gold spirals, beehives, tendrils and tiny spheres.
Cannetille work is also known to incorporate granulation, one of the most difficult of techniques. It involves dropping heated gold onto the surface to adhere to it without the use of solder.
The surmount combines upward and downward visual elements and the dangle takes on an overall oval form. A jewel from another time and another place that wends its way to us through the years yet as wearable today as it was then.