Regency aka Regina Novelty Company aka Regent Jewelry Company
Regency aka Regina Novelty Company aka Regent Jewelry Company (Est. circa 1950 – 1970?) This company that multiple sources identify by at least three different names was established around 1950 in New York by the Polowitz family. It was this company that introduced the Regency line of costume jewelry.
While known for its use of striking rhinestones in a rainbow of colors, the company’s signature piece was the butterfly pin. Like other costume jewelry companies of the era, Regency produced jewelry that was intended to resemble expensive, high-quality pieces.
Regency jewelry was manufactured using exquisite rhinestones, art glass stones and glass beads. Some of their most valuable pieces feature sapphire cabochons. Their specialties were brooches, pins, and earrings.
Pieces were also set with faux pearls, simulated turquoise and other colored stones shaped as navettes, teardrops, cabochons, and chatons. The company frequently used a Japanned metal finish in the black-coal tar look to set off darker hued rhinestones.
In addition to their butterflies, creations also included novelty glass insects, bugs, and flowers among others. Later designs included beaded necklaces. Experts have written that Regency’s use of quality materials and intricate workmanship made their creations comparable to Florenza and Hollycraft jewelry.
While Regency costume jewelry was not always signed with a copyright symbol, those that were are usually marked, “REGENCY.” The mark sometimes also appeared in a cartouche on the back. Many brooch and earring sets have only the brooch signed. Pieces are also known to have the mark, “Fleur de Paris by Regency” with “handmade of imported French glass” on the reverse.
The jewelry was sold directly to department stores in New York, Chicago and other large cities. Many were on hang-tags. The company stopped production in the 1970s.
Regency jewelry is not especially rare, but still is not often found on the market. Prices can be a little on the high side because of the pieces’ desirability.