Pop Beads Who Knew They Could Be So Elegant

Who doesn’t just love pop beads? If you’re old enough, you either wore them as contemporary fashion or maybe you played with your mother’s. All the different colors to arrange in a zillion different ways!

My friends at the Jewelry Ring recently were discussing vintage plastic pop beads that look like faceted crystal called Crystelle Poppits and it carried me off to do some research.

Crystelle Poppits Blue Richelieu

Crystelle Poppits Blue Richelieu

Crystelle Poppits Pink Richelieu

Crystelle Poppits Pink Richelieu








I’ve had a few of these necklaces in my shop and never knew that they were made by Richelieu in the early 1960s. Apparently only the earrings were signed – I had no idea there were matching earrings! The necklaces came with hangtags, which of course, are almost always missing.

Always curious when I find out new things, I went wandering around the internet to see what I could see. It always excites me when I find something that documents when a piece of vintage jewelry or clothing was made, like a catalog or newspaper advertisement, and I found one.

This time it is a newspaper article from May 7, 1962. To quote the article, “These are Richelieu’s new Crystelle poppits in clear or colors, with matching eardrops. Can be lengthened or shortened, at will, into choker, bib, rope, even bracelet.” So we know that these unique pop beads date to spring of 1962!

The entire page is just full of more great fashion information from early 1962 – mostly about summer jewelry trends, the latest styles from Napier, Marvella, Trifari, and Kramer. I am absolutely drooling over the fringed earrings and RING(!) from Napier. I only found one pair of vintage fringe earrings signed Napier when I went on the hunt but I really can’t tell if these are the same as the ones in the article. I also love the ad for the Anne Adams pattern. Check it out – it’s a little grainy but readable.  “Cool Look in Jewelry Takes Over for Summer