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What is “Memento Amori” Jewelry?

What is “Memento Amori” Jewelry?

Travel back to the Victorian era when women wore corsets and bonnets and men wore top hats and suits. After the death of Prince Albert in 1861, wearing black had become a fashion and the popularity of mourning jewelry reached its peak.

Memento mori is one such style of mourning jewelry that dates as far back as the 16th century. The phrase ‘memento mori’ in Latin means ‘Remember Death.’ At Chinchar Maloney, our collection of exquisite Memento Amori jewelry takes on a new translation – ‘Remember Love.’

Our Memento Amori jewelry pieces pay homage to the Victorian era and reflects the unique characteristics and design elements of traditional mourning jewelry and memento mori jewelry. Instead of focusing on death, this jewelry collection showcases beautiful tokens of eternal love.

History of Memento Amori


To really understand the allure of memento mori jewelry, you must first understand the evolution of memento mori. Memento mori jewelry depicts symbols of death, such as skeletons, skulls, coffins, worms, and other artistic renderings associated with funerals and mourning. While the look of memento mori or “mourning” jewelry is still highly sought after today, these adornments originally rose to popularity in the 16th century.

Memento mori jewelry takes on many forms, such as pendants, rings, and brooches. Antique examples are most often seen in gold with black enamel and may contain intricate details, such as carved stones, faceted gems, colored enamel, or religious inscriptions. In later decades, mourning jewelry was primarily black.

When memento mori jewelry first entered the fashion scene, it was not used to commemorate a particular person, but rather served as a reminder of mortality. Many wore this style to show appreciation for life – the good and the bad. Over time, memento mori became a representation of a person’s connection to a deceased loved one and was commonly handed out at funerals, sometimes personalized with initials.

Memento Amori Collection


Memento Amori is Chinchar Maloney’s latest mini-collection that draws from the fashion and jewelry influences of the Victorian era. This twist on the classic memento mori style is meant to be meaningful with its clear message of “love is eternal.” The collection features a variety of jewelry types, including earrings, necklaces, and rings. The pieces are also available in different colors and accented with diamonds and other gemstones.

With a greater focus on love than death, the Memento Amori collection is meant to commemorate the love between two people. Shoppers will find symbolic designs within this collection, including depictions of skulls. Today, skull necklaces and skull rings are suitable for everyday wear and can give any outfit a unique and edgy look. The pieces in this collection are also comfortable and durable enough for daily wear. Wearing a piece of our Memento Amori jewelry with a skull signifies a love that is greater than our own mortality.

Skull rings and other jewelry in the Memento Amori mini collection require proper care to keep the pieces in pristine condition. It is important to follow many of the same care and handling tips as you would for any fine jewelry. Memento Amori jewelry should be kept dry and stored in a safe case or pouch before bathing, swimming, or doing chores. Never wear fine jewelry when performing hard labor or participating in impact sports or activities.

It is normal for rings and other jewelry to collect dust, soap, and debris over time, especially if worn daily. Clean jewelry containing diamonds and other gemstones by soaking them in water with a touch of non-detergent, mild soap. Rinse the jewelry and pat dry with a clean cloth. You may also choose to have your jewelry professionally cleaned on occasion.

All pieces in Chinchar Maloney’s Memento Amori collection are made with beautiful 14k gold and adorned with brilliant white diamonds. Some pieces also contain stunning red garnet, a gemstone that was popular during the Victorian era and acts as a symbol of trust and affection.

If you love the look of memento mori jewelry and want a piece that is truly one-of-a-kind, consider customizing some skull jewelry. Chinchar Maloney offers a “build your own engagement ring” service that allows customers to design every aspect of their jewelry. Custom engagement rings can feature your choice of a wide selection of loose diamonds and gemstones.

Custom designed jewelry takes approximately four to six weeks to complete, but the process is well worth the wait. Customers are involved throughout the process, starting from the initial consultation until the handcrafted jewelry is in your hand. Chinchar Maloney also offers other beautiful pieces to check out, including Montana sapphire jewelry and jewelry containing naturally colored diamonds. All our diamonds are untreated, meaning you’ll receive a natural diamond engagement ring.

Shop Memento Amori Jewelry


More than a century ago, no person in mourning would consider their outfit complete without a piece of memento mori, or mourning jewelry. Mourning jewelry was a special way to keep the dear departed close to you. Some antique pieces even contained a piece of the deceased’s hair kept under a small pane of glass. Many of these pieces were also personalized with the deceased’s person’s name engraved in the metal and detailed with dark blue or black enamel.

When it comes to modern day jewelry, the concept of love outweighs all. Think of pieces in the Memento Amori jewelry mini collection as small tokens of love and a symbolism of the devotion between two people. You’ll find remarkable pieces like the Heart in Hand Pendant, Skull Earrings in 14k Gold, and the Skull Ring in 14k Gold with Garnet, each unique, stylish, and comfortable to wear.

Interested in a piece of Memento Amori jewelry or are you considering building your own memento mori-inspired ring? Trust the jewelry professionals at Chinchar Maloney to walk you through the process. For more information about the Memento Amori mini-collection or to request a consultation for a custom piece, call us today at 503.946.8227.