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by Susan Klein

Selro/Selini is best known for amazing figurals, often depicting Asian and African faces. It is interesting to note that even some of the plastic pieces themselves are stamped “Selro Corp ©”. Selenger must have had a copyright on some of the Asian faces that are so unique to his jewelry. There are basically three different figural faces that are found in Selro/Selini jewelry: An Asian woman face (Often called 'Thai Girl'), an old Asian man face and an African face. These faces can be found in numerous colors and textures (i.e. pearlized), plus are often over painted and embellished with elaborate headdresses that are part of the metal settings.

Sometimes this particular face is known as “Thai Girl”. Note the decorative hats that are part of the setting. Unsigned.

Much of Selro/Selini jewelry is unsigned and may have been originally hang-tagged. There are some clues, however, to identifying unmarked Selro/Selini jewelry. First, the heavy, herringbone chain that Selinger used on his lariat necklaces is distinctive and unique. A finer herringbone chain can often been seen on the smaller, non-lariat necklaces (See image of necklace in elaborate blue cabochon parure on first page of this article). Second, many pieces have a unique bracing structure on the back of the jewelry that can lead to its identification. Note the back of the lemon colored oval cabochon Selini bracelet, pictured.

Finally, Selinger's settings are extremely complex and detailed. Also, note the tiny cat faces in the setting that adorn the pictured purple lariat. Additionally, Selinger liked to use very decorative prongs in his settings with large, glass cabochon stones or heavily carved plastic stones and dangles.
The company was in business from approximately the late1940s until about 1975. Selenger married quite late in life at the age of 52 and never had any children. He died at the age of 79 on Dec. 16, 1990.

Unusual lariat style necklace featuring Czech glass beads, unsigned.

Selenger's jewelry is coveted for its artistry and unique style. It seems there are numerous variations of his figural pieces, so there is always something interesting for collectors to hunt for. The unsigned, non-figural pieces are also in great demand now that they can be more easily identified as Selro.

Blue confetti confection, comprising two different bracelets, two different earrings and bolo-style necklace.

Jewelry photographed by Allen Bagdade; Courtesy of D. Brett Benson of D. Brett Benson Jewelry at the Broadway Antique Market, Chicago, IL and Cheryl Killmer of Past Perfection Vintage Costume Jewelry

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