Ruser jewelry was some of the most appreciated jewelry by Hollywood stars, standing out for elegance, and finesse. These pieces have a special style.
The beautiful Ruser jewelry is best known for its quirky designs, which feature hummingbirds, penguins, squirrels, and butterflies, among other animals.
The Man Behind Ruser Jewelry
These unique jewels were created by non-other than William Ruser.
Ruser, who was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1908, started working for Howard Hoeffer in Atlantic City when he was 17 years old.
Vintage Ruser Platinum Pearl & Diamond Ring
The company was a division of Jewelers Trabert & Hoeffer-Mauboussin. An American business called Trabert & Hoeffer collaborated with Maison Mauboussin in Paris.
The designer of Ruser jewelry worked his way up to become the manager of the Los Angeles location in the 1930s when he also bought a sizable collection of freshwater pearls from a Mississippi button manufacturer that filled several shoe boxes.
Ruser spent the subsequent years honing his trade before relocating to Beverly Hills in the 1930s to run a shop there. In 1934, he wed Pauline.
Ruser returned to the jewelry industry after serving in the Army Air Corps during World War II and thought it was time to start his own firm, which he did in 1947 with his wife Pauline.
It first debuted in Beverly Hills at 300 Rodeo Drive, and rapidly gathered many clients, including some of the biggest stars of the day who wore Ruser jewelry both on and off camera.
Elegant platinum and diamond jewelry that embraced post-war optimism and a lighter spirit was a specialty of Ruser Jewels.
Ruser jewelry was a resounding success for the twenty years that William stayed in business.
Ruser retired in 1969 and shut down his salon, selling the space to Van Cleef & Arpels. In 1994, William Ruser passed away.
You can find some of this magnificent Ruser jewelry in the DSF Antique Jewelry online shop.
When Ruser first acquired a large number of Mississippi pearls, he did not do much with them. It wasn't until more than ten years later that he began to make what would grow to be a massive collection of pearl set jewels, including a menagerie of animals, flowers, and cherubs, some of which were more angelic looking than others, according to Hancocks London.
Although these pearls were not particularly fashionable at the time, he saw their potential and used them to create jewelry that was incredibly imaginative.
During the Art Nouveau era, freshwater pearls were widely used, but they lost favor during the following decades. Actually, Ruser jewelry served as a means of regaining their appeal.
While William was creating amazing pieces with those American freshwater pearls, Ruser jewelry also featured wonderful sculptural pieces with pave-set diamonds and gemstones, which quickly gained popularity.
He was able to create wonderfully whimsical pieces thanks to the exceptional and distinctive shape of these pearls as well as their brilliant spectrum of colors, which ranges from pinks and purples to blues and greens as well as the more typical creams and whites.
Ruser Black Opal Diamond Platinum Owl Brooch
Ruser cleverly depicted a fanciful menagerie that included penguins, hummingbirds, squirrels, butterflies, swans, skunks, and, most notably, poodles in his sumptuous designs using baroque, freshwater pearls. Also, cheeky cherubs with freshwater pearls, according to wilsonsestatejewelry.com.
He saw the potential to produce jewels that could be made beautiful with the appropriate combination of gold and diamonds in the odd shapes and uneven textures of the pearls. And the jewelry by Ruser is proof of that.
Ruser often used these pearls in his artwork, which frequently takes the guise of different creatures, most notably birds.
The miniature gold-sculpted children portrayed sitting on or walking through a cluster of pearls were all inspired by the well-known song "Monday's Child". This is one particularly recognizable group of figurative pearl jewels.
So, Friday's child takes care of a puppy, Thursday's child carries a small bag of belongings tied to a stick, and Monday's child sits with his head in his hands and a decidedly dejected expression.
Additionally, Ruser frequently incorporated the creamy elongated pearls as wings or other body parts, emphasizing the distinctive shapes of these pearls and giving these pieces a delightfully realistic and three-dimensional feel.
Movie Stars Loved Ruser Jewelry
Naturally, Ruser's Beverly Hills location garnered a clientele from Hollywood.
Famous actors and actresses who loved Ruser jewelry included Marlene Dietrich, Lana Turner, Claudette Colbert, and Joan Crawford.
In 1948's "Sorry, Wrong Number," which starred Barbara Stanwyck and showcased Ruser jewelry prominently, the company gained a film credit. This was only a year after Ruser first entered the market.
Some of the Ruser adornments, including the iris brooch and diamond ribbon earrings, were made just for the movie.
The actress also wore some of her own custom Ruser jewelry, including a gorgeous diamond gardenia flower brooch and earrings that hung from a neck chain.
Many pieces of Ruser jewelry belonged to Joan Crawford, including a stunning collection of beautiful amethyst pieces that are strikingly similar to some of the Reflection jewels made by Trabert & Hoeffer.
Marlene Dietrich and Lana Turner were two other admirers of Ruser jewelry.
Hollywood actress Loretta Young, who received an Oscar for her role in "The Farmer's Daughter" in 1947, quickly fell in love with this particular Ruser style.
Young loved a swan brooch made of gold and pearls she acquired from Ruser that exquisitely utilized his baroque pearls.
Ruser Freshwater Pearl Cufflink & Van Cleef Arpels Studs
Also, Shirley Temple possessed a Ruser platinum bracelet with a row of musicians that were artfully joined by baguettes and round diamonds and flecked with star rubies.
Ruser was a highly regarded jeweler among the Hollywood elite, and many starlets wore his creations both on and off-screen. Ava Gardner was a well-known jewelry collector and movie star who appreciated Ruser's creations.
She received a single unique piece that was created in collaboration between Van Cleef and Arpels and William Ruser. The object is individualized by both design teams, which emphasizes the amount of design celebrity Ruser has attained.
Ruser offered the stylish accessories that were a staple of any jeweler's inventory at the time, including compacts, lighters, and personal valet goods, in addition to his pearl-infused creations and the superb diamond and ensemble pieces that were his stock in trade.
Ruser also added his own twist to these accessories. His zany animal cufflinks were extremely popular.
All of his cufflinks, compacts, lighters, and watches feature his distinctive aesthetic, which is still coveted by vintage and retro jewelry lovers today.
Ruser was one of the iconic American jewelers of the 1950s and 1960s and was adored by Hollywood.
He is best known for his whimsical sculptured jewelry made with special baroque-shaped Mississippi pearls.
Being infused with William's personality throughout, even today, Ruser jewelry is highly coveted due to its artistic flair and exuberant playfulness.