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Vintage Iris Floating Opal Company Opal Pendant, 12K Gold Filled

Item Type: Gold Filled with glass, opal filled drop pendant

Age/Year: circa 1950’s

Designer: Iris Floating Opal Company

Maker: Iris Floating Opal Company

Distributor: Unknown

Signed: IFO on cap, 1/20 12K GF (IFO stands for Iris Floating Opal)

Diameter: 15 mm

Length: 3/4"

Height: NA

Condition: Excellent, tiny bit of resdue on top near where cap and glass meet.

Comments: Floating Opals were Initially designed by engineer Horace Welch, who was awarded many patents for this item. The floating Opal addressed the fragility issues of opal in a unique way. His patents were infringed by others, and he died before the suit was settled in his favor.

The opal chips are placed in a glycerin solution, in a glass ampoule, and give off flashes of color when worn. This one does not have the later addition of plain glass inside the ampoule, which was added to keep costs down.

The Iris Floating Opal Company also made these little gems, using Welch’s idea, and Iris went out of business years ago.

The floating opals marked such as this have been verified to be older items, as later ones were generally silver.

Many of these were lost and broken. This one has never been worn, and is just beautiful.

The chains were often added by the actual seller- this one does not have a chain, and as we sell things that are unaltered, we did not add one. If you wish a chain, let us know the length and we will add the cost to the listing. All we need is the length.

This item is a MUST HAVE piece for any serious collector.

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Vintage Horace Welch Style Floating Opal Pendant


  • Vintage item from the 1950s
  • Materials: metal, gold filled, glycerin, gold filled 12K, 12K GF, floating opal, opal, opal pieces
  • Ships worldwide from United States
  • Feedback: 263 reviews
  • Favorited by: 76 people