Jollys Jewellers

Unlock the Wonders of Key Jewellery

29th March 2017

silver key pendant next to a red and yellow rose

Jewellery comes in all sort of shapes and carries many symbols, one very traditional shape we will all recognise is the Key. A tool we use every day and yet as jewellery it has a whole other meaning.

How or Where did the Key Pendant begin?

If you dive into the history of Key jewellery you may find yourself searching through years and years of possible beginnings, Keys were given as a symbol of power, trust and recognition of reaching a milestone in your life.

Traditionally we still see the Key as something we may give to those who have reached their 18th or 21st birthday – but why these two significant birthdays? This may date back to a time when, once you had come of age, you were considered old enough to be a key-holder to your family home.

During the Middle Ages someone may have been given a ‘Key to the City’, this symbol of power and trust is still used in the modern day, for special guests and people who have achieved a significant amount that it’s recognised publicly.

Three key pendants for a 21st and 18th birthday

Left to Right: Sterling Silver ’21’ Key Pendant, Sterling Silver ’18’ Key PendantSterling Silver ’21’ Key Pendant

What does Key Jewellery Symbolize?

As the purpose of a Key is to lock and unlock objects, ancient beliefs tell of how a Key pendant could physically open your intellectual and spiritual barriers, allowing you to access treasures and wonders. This traditional way of seeing the Key pendant has travelled through time to the modern day, where still now, we give Keys to those who have reached a particular moment in their life, whether that’s a birthday, graduation or other occasion that can symbolise ‘new beginnings’.

More romantically, a Key pendant can have several symbolic meanings, we’ve all heard the phrase ‘the Key to your heart’, the act of giving a piece of Key jewellery can symbolise just this, whether you’re in a new relationship or simply reminding a loved one of how you’ve always felt, the Key pendant can be a wonderful gesture for weddings, birthdays, Christmas and Valentine’s Day.

Key pendants of course, will mean something different to everyone, just like it did for Queen Victoria, who apparently would not wear jewellery unless it had meaning or emotional tie.

If you’re someone who loves a good mystery, you may be interested in seeking out Antique key pendants, which could possibly have a corresponding lock. These typically look old, rusted and almost haunted, but are beautiful and could possibly have hidden a past which makes the jewellery even more interested. However modern Key pendants have evolved into beautiful jewellery that have unique designs, are decorated with gemstones and can become the star of your own story.

Yellow Gold Patterned Key Pendant

9 Carat Yellow Gold Patterned Key Charm / Pendant

Today’s Key Jewellery

Along with the Key pendant, you may come across padlocks and lockets, these are wonderful companions to Key pendants and have always been popular with lovers, the simple meaning of everlasting love and the gesture of giving someone your love has been cherished since the last 18th century! This symbol of commitment has been carried through the ages.


Genuine Pandora Sterling Silver Padlock Charm

Genuine Pandora Sterling Silver 925 Heart Padlock Key Charm

Have you received a piece of Key Jewellery, perhaps a pendant, padlock or locket? Let us know your story and what it means to you.

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Whether you desire an individual vintage piece or stunning modern lines, Jollys is the place for you. Jollys are established throughout the East Midlands, with jewellery shops in Nottingham, Ilkeston and our head office in Mansfield.

Visit Jollys Jewellers in Mansfield for Vintage, Antique & New Jewellery.


10-12 Market PlaceMansfieldNottinghamshireNG18 1HU
01623 652227
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25 High StreetHucknallNottinghamNG15 7HJ
0115 964 0200
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71 Bath StreetIlkestonDerbyshireDE7 8AJ
0115 930 5562

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