Have you seen our collection of statement necklaces featuring vintage horse brasses? We first discovered these delightful brass treasures buried in antique shops and estate sales and markets, and knew they would make for a fun collection.
Not only do they have a storied past, but each is unique and beautiful and makes for a lovely conversation point. Whether you have interest in all things equestrian or just simply love one-of-a-kind statement jewelry, we think you'll love this line.
With origins in ancient times, horse brasses were thought to be an amulet of sorts, meant to protect from evil forces. Brasses have been discovered of Pre-Roman origin, and thought to have been introduced to England through a Far East tribe settling there, and then later reintroduced by returning members of the Crusades who had accumulated the as souvenirs from Eastern countries.
Paintings and tapestries dating from the late 17th century show horses adorned with brasses. Most brasses that are found today were made between the years of 1860 to 1890, with the largest manufacturer ceasing production in 1910. So we know they're old! What I have found to be cool about them is that each is unique in its symbol or design. Over 1200 designs have been documented, and they have significance about when and where they were made, as well as the owner of the horse and their occupations.
For example, one that we have shows an anchor and capstan wheel, which refers to a Naval horse.
We have another that shows what looks like a deer, which looks like a brass design that was from a Wiltshire Estate in England.
We also have a daintier chain design, one of which features a brass with a peacock, which would have been a colonial-type brass.
What a unique way to wear a piece of history! As with any of our other vintage and antique pieces, I'm always wondering what the story behind them is... who wore it, when, what was the meaning behind it. If these brass medallions could talk, OH the stories they would tell. I'm just sure of it.
We're always finding other brasses tucked away in forgotten places, so more will appear in the shop soon. If you love the concept, but want a specific emblem or figure on your horse brass, don't hesitate to reach out! We can be on the lookout or reserve one just for you! In the meantime, check out our collection online here, and many others at Titch & Burt's Mercantile, a boutique shop in Waco, TX.