Humans have always had the tendency to decorate themselves, and have made jewels part of their fashion. Jewels are as old as clothing, and were made from almost the same materials that clothes were made from, hundreds of years ago. Jewels have gone from being an exclusive art form used to display wealth, to being just another kind of personal adornment used by everyone today to express themselves in various ways such as showing affection towards someone.
Having an age long history, and having always played both decorative and spiritual functions, today jewels blend with culture, and are becoming an integral part of humanity. Some history even shows us that prehistoric humans probably thought of decorating the body before ever thinking about clothing. Jewels are of high value because of the nature of their creation and kind of craftsmanship put into them. Some of the ancient Middle Eastern and Western jewelers actually used nearly all technical processes of today like welding, alloys, filigree, stone-cutting, and enameling.
People used shells, fish bones, fish teeth, coloured pebbles, reindeer antlers, mammoth tusks, wood, feathers, all kinds of animal bones, and skins to adorn themselves. They transformed these materials from their natural state into in various elaborate forms. This was even before precious metals were discovered. They formed various kinds of jewels, and made different ornaments for different parts of the body.
- For the head; Tiaras, hair pins, earrings, nose rings, lip rings, combs, crowns and earplugs.
- For the neck and torso; Fibulae brooches, pectorals, necklaces, belts, and watch fobs.
- For the arms; Bracelets and rings.
- For the thighs, legs, and feet; Thigh bracelets, anklets, toe rings, and shoe buckles.
The Middle East, the West, the Asians, and even the North Americans, have a very rich collection of wonderful antiquities recovered from ancient times.