Saturday, August 3, 2013

Musical Jewelry Boxes

In the movie, Titanic, there is a scene where Rose is sitting at her vanity listening to her musical jewelry box. The scene is tender and reminiscent at the same time. For many adult women, they were able to related to the sweet sound from their first jewelry box that played a tune just as prettily as Rose’s did. Music boxes have played an important role in many women’s lives and the most memorable ones for most women are the musical jewelry boxes.

For many people, the first company that comes to mind when thinking about musical jewelry boxes is Mele. This company has been making jewelry boxes since 1912, when the founder Emidio Mele began making his own displays for jewelry stores. His work was quickly appreciated and put into shops on New York’s Fifth Avenue.

After World War II, when the world had a little more time and money to spend, the Mele jewelry box was a successful seller at Macy’s Department Store. The first jewelry box that they sold had an automatic tray and this tray helped make the Mele jewelry box one of the top ten gifts of the 1948 holiday season; the box was even given a feature article in Life Magazine. Just a few years later in the 1950’s, Mele added musical jewelry boxes that used a precise Swiss movement, which made the music sound precise and charming.

Once the musical boxes became popular with adult women, Mele introduced the iconic ballerina jewelry box for young girls. This box had a ballerina that would pop up when the lid was lifted and she would spin when the music box feature was wound. These musical ballerina boxes played favorite tunes like Fur Elise.

At Chasing Treasure, we sell a full line of ballerina musical jewelry boxes for young girls of all ages. The boxes range in sizes and many come with accessory drawers and compartments for all of your favorite girl’s jewelry and treasures.

When you shop for a music box, there are some features to be familiar with so you know you are getting a high quality box. Each music box contains a small motor that needs to wound in order to play. The motor is wound with a windup key or a ratchet lever that winds a spring so that it slowly releases and plays the music. Some music boxes will play for a few minutes and some will play for over an hour.

Each music box has a cylinder that is covered with pins spaced to create a musical tune. The cylinder pins are played when they move the teeth of the comb, which has teeth tuned to different sounds. When the cylinder spins, the teeth ring, which makes the sound of the music box. There are some music boxes that have several combs and cylinders so that they have complex musical sounds, but many of the simple ballerina music boxes have a single cylinder and one or two combs that produce the sound.

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