Pavé

Pavé is a type of setting in which the gemstones or pastes are set very close together and no metal is showing from underneath.  They stones are usually very small. The stones are held in place by small pieces of metal pushed over the girdle of the stone.  The stones are often laid out in concentric circles. The word ‘pavé’ comes from the Middle French for ‘pavement’.

There are many fine examples of this setting in antique and period jewelry.

Dress ornament in the form of a tulip flower-head.Silver in very high relief, hollowed out at the closed back, set with calibré-cut pastes. The later pin probably replaces sewing links; .

Russia, c. 1726-1775
Dress Ornament, silver with pave pastes.
British Museum

During the Victorian era, there are a lot of examples of pavé turquoises.

The color of turquoises was reminiscent of forget-me-nots, so would have had special meaning to the Victorians.

Necklace

England, c. 1820-1830
Necklace, gold, pave turquoises and half pearls.
V&A Museum
Brooch

England, 1830-1840
Brooch, gold pave turquoises, rubies, emeralds and pearls
V&A Museum

A small group of jewellery

Victorian pavé cabochon turquoise, rose-cut diamond and pearl floral spray brooch.
Christie’s Sale 8474

Art Nouveau designers were also fond of using Pavé settings.

1900 Rene Lalique cuff with enamel and pave-set diamond leaves

1900 Rene Lalique cuff with enamel and pave-set diamond leaves

During the Art Deco era, pavé set diamonds alone or accented with other boldly colored gems were especially popular to the point of being a signature style of the era. 

BRACELET ART DECO DIAMANTS

Art Deco Diamond Pave set bracelet
Christie’s Sale 3517

AN ART DECO EMERALD AND DIAMOND BROOCH

Art Deco Emerald and Diamond Brooch
Christie’s Sale 1393

AN EXCEPTIONAL ART DECO DIAMOND AND GEM BRACELET, BY CARTIER

ART DECO DIAMOND AND GEM BRACELET, BY CARTIER
Christie’s Sale 5388

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