Jewelry has been an essential part of Arabian dress for thousands of years. More than just personal decoration, jewelry symbolized social and economic status.
Traditional jewelry was mostly made of silver, although gold was also used. Jewelers used stones such as turquoise, garnets and amber from the Kingdom’s rich mines, and pearls and coral from the coastal areas.
Tiny bells, coins and chains were also used for decoration. Designs primarily evolved from Islamic calligraphy and motifs, and featured intricate patterns of geometric shapes, leaves, crescents and flowers.
Today, Saudi women still receive gifts of jewelry from their husbands when they marry or have children. Unlike their ancestors, who received large amounts of bracelets, rings, earrings and necklaces as part of their dowry.
Modern Saudi women wear jewelry in traditional and contemporary designs with diamonds and a variety of precious metals. Solid gold bracelets remain a traditional gift for girls.