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Browse these categories under "Antique & Vintage Clip On Earrings"

AC Silver is proud to present an extensive selection of antique & vintage clip on earrings, all of which have been crafted in platinum or gold.

Our fine selection features a range of diamond clip on earrings, along with a fantastic range of other gemstones. This fine array includes antique & vintage examples to suit everyone’s taste and style.

In the early 1900s, clip-on earrings maintained their popularity, and real piercings continued to be eschewed. The prototypical ‘flapper’ styles that entered the fashion scene in the late 1910s and early 1920s prominently featured short, cropped hair, mimicking more ‘masculine’ styles.

The large earrings that had been the height of fashion for Victorians had instead been swapped out for more simple, architectural shapes, as the Art Deco style reached a peak in popularity, around the 1950s.

antique vintage clip on earrings

Whilst earrings for pierced earrings have can be traced back for thousands of years, the same cannot be said about clip-on earrings.

Within European countries earrings appeared in the sixteenth century however were not a staple fashion due to the use of bonnets and trending hair styles. During the mid-nineteenth century women abandoned their bonnets and once more tied their hair up, and whilst earrings re-emerged into fashion the Victorian ladies found it unrefined to have piercings; the holes required in the lobe for the elegant jewellery were seen as vulgar.

The 20th century saw the invention of the clip-on earring and this alleviated the disgrace of having pierced holes in the lobe. As this invention became more established it was observed that clip-on earrings could accommodate everyone and thus they became highly popular and available in all styles/shops.

However, this enthusiasm did not sustain through the rebellious young adults of the 1970s who opted to no longer wear the 1950s style clip-on pearls and instead pierce their ears once more; this was seen as an act of defiance at the time.

Modern day jewellery can be found in a broad spectrum of styles, as piercings have peaked in height of popularity, however there are those who opt to still wear clip on earrings for convenience. For those wishing to utilise their family heirlooms from the Victorian period they most likely only be able to find clip on examples, and desire to keep them in their original condition.

You require no pierced hole for clip-on earrings. The use of clip-on earrings allow for the wearer to withstand the stretching of a piercing, especially when wearing larger, extravagant earrings. The mere weight of some drop earrings may cause pain to the lobe and create tension, whereas the clip-on option can provide a higher level of comfort.

Some people also find that piercings irritate their skin, leaving them prone to infections and higher degrees of allergic reactions, and so clip-on earrings are ideal for those who still intend on being fashionable and finding earrings that suit their attire/event.

Learn more on Earrings for Sensitive Ears.

Clip on earrings work through a hinged latch which applies pressure to the posterior of the ear, whilst the main design meets the anterior surface, allowing the earring to be held in place. There are other options such as screw back earrings, which offer a screw fit stopper in placement of a hinged latch – these still proffer the wearer in regards to lack of piercings required.

There are many different types of clip-on earring fastening and different options appeal to different people. If you’re looking for the best clip-on earrings that don’t hurt and the most comfortable clip on earrings, here are a few you can choose between:

  • Screw back: this was the very first clip on fastening design created by the Victorians around 1894. Screw back fastenings work by tightly screwing the back of the earring against the back of the lobe. These fastenings are one of the more comfortable options as the screw allows them to be fully adjustable.

  • Hinge back: a new fastening alternative was introduced during the 1930s – the hinge back. This style is a lot less fiddly and easier to attach to your ear compared to the screw back. This style consists of a simple clip that works like a hand. This fastening is most appropriate for smaller lightweight earrings.

  • Paddle back: the next fastening to become popular was the paddle back which was created in the 1950s. This design is made up of a wide fastening with a tension bar running down the centre. Paddle back earrings can be adjusted by bending the tension bar inwards or outwards.

  • Mini clip: another great option for lightweight earrings is the mini clip fastening. These dainty fastenings a shaped like a small wedge which can be adjusted using a tension bar.

21.12ct Aquamarine and 5.86ct Diamond, 18ct White Gold Clip on Earrings - Vintage Circa 1980
Price: GBP £14,245.00
4.39ct Diamond and Platinum Earrings - Art Deco - Vintage Circa 1940
Price: GBP £7,950.00
Natural Pearl and 0.36ct Diamond, Platinum Drop Earrings - Antique Circa 1910
Price: GBP £7,645.00
3.25ct Diamond and 9ct White Gold Earrings - Art Deco - Antique Circa 1935
Price: GBP £6,950.00
7.76ct Opal and 2.05ct Diamond, 9ct Yellow Gold Clip On Earrings - Antique Victorian
Price: GBP £5,445.00
8.18ct Opal and 0.98ct Diamond, 9ct White Gold and Platinum Earring and Pendant Set - Antique Circa 1920
Price: GBP £5,445.00
Enamel, 0.88ct Diamond Earrings in 18ct Yellow Gold by De Vroomen
Price: GBP £4,950.00
7.72ct Aquamarine and 1.18ct Diamond, 14ct White Gold Earrings - Vintage Circa 1970
Price: GBP £4,125.00
1.00ct Diamond, 15ct and 12ct Rose Gold Clip On Earrings - Antique Circa 1930
Price: GBP £3,950.00
Vintage 5.20ct Sapphire and 0.90ct Diamond, 18 ct Yellow Gold Earrings
Price: GBP £3,950.00
0.72 ct Diamond and 18ct Yellow Gold Earrings - Vintage French Circa 1960
Price: GBP £3,250.00
0.70ct Diamond and Cultured Pearl, Platinum Drop Earrings - Vintage Circa 1960
Price: GBP £2,695.00
Cultured Pearl and 1.10ct Diamond, Platinum Clip On Earrings - Antique Circa 1930
Price: GBP £2,450.00
1.56ct Sapphire and 1.20ct Diamond, 9ct Yellow Gold Earrings - Antique Circa 1900
Price: GBP £2,450.00
Antique 22.28 ct Garnet and Diamond Clip On Earrings in 9 ct Rose Gold
Price: GBP £2,250.00
1.04ct Sapphire and 1.75ct Diamond, 18ct White Gold Earrings - Antique Circa 1935
Price: GBP £1,995.00
Mabe Pearl & 0.78ct Diamond, 9ct White Gold Earrings - Art Deco Style - Vintage Circa 1950
Price: GBP £1,865.00
Black Onyx and 0.45ct Diamond, 14ct Yellow Gold Earrings - Vintage Circa 1970
Price: GBP £1,755.00
0.50ct Sapphire and 18ct Yellow Gold Earrings by Mellerio - Vintage Circa 1980
Price: GBP £1,695.00
0.16ct Sapphire and 18ct Yellow Gold Earrings by Cartier - Vintage Circa 1990
Price: GBP £1,695.00
0.54ct Diamond and Pearl, 18ct White Gold Drop Earrings - Vintage Circa 1960
Price: GBP £1,645.00
0.66 ct Aquamarine, 0.60 ct Garnet and 0.57 ct Citrine, 14ct Yellow Gold Earrings - Vintage Circa 1960
Price: GBP £1,595.00
0.68ct Sapphire and 0.39ct Diamond, 18ct Yellow Gold Clip-On Earrings - Vintage Circa 1990
Price: GBP £1,535.00
Natural Pearl and 15ct Yellow Gold, Platinum Set Drop Earrings - Antique Victorian
Price: GBP £1,535.00

Proud Members of

International Federation of Art and Antique Dealer Associations CINOA
National Association of Jewellery UK's trade association NAJ