Serpents have long been a popular motif in jewelry. The duality of fascination and fear keeps snakes recurring in jewelry, from ancient times to the present. Snakes have represented fertility, rebirth, immortality, desire, and eternity. No matter what they represent, in the hands of skilled jewelry designers, their form is serpentine magic.
Here are some of my favorite snake designs, from antique to modern; from simple to sublime.
In the sublime serpent category: a stunning new creation by Wendy Yue.
The Victorians loved their snakes. I wonder, did they represent desire or immortality to the Victorians? Estate of Grace 14kt gold Victorian Snake pendant on modern blackened silver chain.
Amazing Boucheron snake bracelet.
This ring from Colette captures everything that I love in a modern statement piece: blackened gold, clean lines, sinuous shape. 18kt Blackened gold with diamonds and moonstones.
These dark and lovely earrings are equal parts danger and sculptural beauty. Laurie Kaiser blackened silver, diamond and 18kt gold earrings.
In this ring, the sneaky snakes within the diamond flowers become the prongs holding a magnificent tanzanite. Mark Patterson Zen Collection ring in 18kt white gold, diamonds, and tanzanite.
There’s a strong possibility that no one has done snakes as well as Bulgari. Evidence: this Bulgari watch owned by Elizabeth Taylor.
This ring gets street cred for being worn by Rihanna. J/Hadley Slither ring in 18kt gold and diamonds.
This serpent is quite compelling around the wrist. Melinda Maria Serpent Cuff in silver plate and CZs.
Stripped down to its purest essence, Gem Gossip Ring Number 5 in 14kt gold and a single diamond.
This ring, worn by Scarlett Johansson, captures the spirit of the snake without being overt. Graziela Bridgitte’s Favorite Ring in 18kt rose gold with 2.79 carats in diamonds.
The fact that the snake’s forked tongue becomes the post in these fanciful earrings is enough to worship them. Wendy Yue Snake Wrap earrings in 18kt black gold with diamonds and sapphires.
Still not sated with snakes? I have a whole menagerie Pinned here, including some amazing vintage pieces. What are your favorite serpents?