You might not know the word “Bakelite” but undoubtedly you’ve seen it.
Bakelite became popular in the 1930’s and 1940’s. It is a strong, fire resistant plastic invented by Leo Baekeland in 1909. At first it was used for industrial purposes until jewelry makers found that lightweight Bakelite made a perfect choice for designing inexpensive jewelry. Coco Chanel was one famous designer who created Bakelite jewelry and accessories.
Here’s are some Bakelite pieces in its various incarnations over the years.