The Art of Beautiful Cameos

Beautiful cameos bearing religious motifs

Historically, cameos were a sign of wealth, but as costume jewelry became more widespread, many were made inexpensively using soft shells, glass, and plastic. Valuable cameos are cut into hard stones, such as onyx, agate, and emerald, and enhanced with elaborate framework—from Etruscan gold to pearls and diamonds. According to Peter Moss, who runs Keil’s Antiques with his mother, Andrée, the depth of the carving is one of the most important elements to look for in beautiful cameos. The intricacies are what make it a timeless art form.

Read the full Keepsakes story “Etched in Time” in our May/June 2021 issue.

Photography by John O’Hagan
Styling by Melissa Sturdivant Smith

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