The Grand Period of the Victorian Era lasted from 1860 to 1880 and design from that time was heavily influenced by the deaths of Queen Victoria’s mother and husband. Her pain was expressed in many designs using the color black as a theme.
Queen Victoria’s realization of how short life is gave design its purpose, which was mourning the dead. Egyptian style and silver became more popular elements that designers started to work into jewelry, which resulted in intricate black pieces with silver highlights. Indeed part of Queen Victoria’s fascination with Egypt was based on the unique ways they honored the dead.