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Vintage Bakelite Jewelry

Durable and colorful, Bakelite jewelry defined an era of fashion forward jewelry accessories. Arguably most memorable are the remarkable range of Bakelite bracelets, which stormed the market in the early years of the 20th century, and, thanks to their longevity, still can appear today as shiny as the day they were made.

Patented in 1907, Bakelite revolutionized the field of plastic products. It was lightweight and yet one of the most heat-resistant moldable plastics, so it proved usable in an incredibly wide range of products, from automotive parts to board games. By the 1920s Bakelite had entered the field of jewelry design, with its iconic luminescent bracelets proving an overnight success.

Vintage Bakelite bangles are arguably a most treasured find among jewelry fans. As with many vintage items, popular Bakelite colors, such as white and green, have faded or changed in tone over time. So some color variation is to be expected among these vintage finds.


Quick Facts

  • The inventor behind Bakelite was a Belgian scientist named Leo Baekeland
  • “Time” magazine proclaimed Bakelite the “material of a thousand uses” in an article profiling the material in 1924
  • Bakelite’s relatively high resistance to heat makes for an easy test as to a piece’s authenticity. If you question whether your bracelet is Bakelite or not, apply a hot tip of a small pin or tine of a fork against the inside band. If it melts, it's plastic; true Bakelite won’t melt

Recommended Items at Auction

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(6) VINTAGE LAMINATED TWO COLOR BAKELITE & OTHER PLASTIC BANGLES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(6) VINTAGE LAMINATED TWO COLOR BAKELITE & OTHER PLASTIC BANGLES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1001 Bid
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Vintage Bakelite Bracelet
Mar 02, 2:00 PM EST
Vintage Bakelite Bracelet
by Heritage Antiques & Auction
Est: $30- $60
$151 Bid
(5) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE EQUESTRIAN HORSE FIGURAL BROOCHES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(5) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE EQUESTRIAN HORSE FIGURAL BROOCHES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $200
$801 Bid
(3) VINTAGE PLASTIC & DEEPLY CARVED BAKELITE BANGLE & BROOCH
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(3) VINTAGE PLASTIC & DEEPLY CARVED BAKELITE BANGLE & BROOCH
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $80- $150
$601 Bid
(2) VINTAGE CARVED GREEN BAKELITE STRETCH BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(2) VINTAGE CARVED GREEN BAKELITE STRETCH BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $80- $150
$601 Bid
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(3) VINTAGE ROOT BEER & TWO COLOR BAKELITE STRETCH BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(3) VINTAGE ROOT BEER & TWO COLOR BAKELITE STRETCH BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $200
$800 Bids
VINTAGE REVERSE CARVED TRANSLUCENT APPLE JUICE BAKELITE FISH BOWL BANGLE
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
VINTAGE REVERSE CARVED TRANSLUCENT APPLE JUICE BAKELITE FISH BOWL BANGLE
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $200- $400
$1500 Bids
(3) VINTAGE BLACK BAKELITE & CELLULOID STRETCH BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(3) VINTAGE BLACK BAKELITE & CELLULOID STRETCH BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $80- $150
$600 Bids
(5) VINTAGE LAMINATED TWO COLOR BAKELITE BANGLES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(5) VINTAGE LAMINATED TWO COLOR BAKELITE BANGLES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $200- $400
$1500 Bids
(2) VINTAGE BAKELITE & CELLULOID FRUIT CHERRY BROOCHES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(2) VINTAGE BAKELITE & CELLULOID FRUIT CHERRY BROOCHES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(11) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLES BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(11) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLES BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(10) VINTAGE BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(10) VINTAGE BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLES BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE BANGLES BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(7) VINTAGE ROOT BEER BAKELITE & OTHER TRANSLUCENT PLASTIC BANGLES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(7) VINTAGE ROOT BEER BAKELITE & OTHER TRANSLUCENT PLASTIC BANGLES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(10) VINTAGE MARBLED & CLAD BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(10) VINTAGE MARBLED & CLAD BAKELITE BANGLE BRACELETS
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(12) VINTAGE CARVED, MARBLED, & CLAD BAKELITE BANGLES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(12) VINTAGE CARVED, MARBLED, & CLAD BAKELITE BANGLES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE & OTHER PLASTIC BANGLES
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
(10) VINTAGE CARVED BAKELITE & OTHER PLASTIC BANGLES
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $150- $300
$1000 Bids
VINTAGE TURQUOISE & LAPIS SET BAKELITE WIDE BANGLE BRACELET
Feb 23, 10:00 AM CST
VINTAGE TURQUOISE & LAPIS SET BAKELITE WIDE BANGLE BRACELET
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $200
$800 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Vintage Bakelite Jewelry


Austin Auction Gallery

Austin Auction Gallery

Heritage Antiques & Auction

Heritage Antiques & Auction