I started collecting Shultz bakelite
jewelry in the mid-1990s when they lived in Pennsylvania. A short
time later, I had the opportunity to meet Ester and Ron Shultz.
It was an instant fascination with their wonderful art. I fell in
love with all the bright and happy pieces of jewelry along with Ron’s
occasional "compulsive art" works.
All of their jewelry is made from old bakelite bangles, blanks,
broken radios, jukeboxes, etc. They are cut, sanded and polished
into all sorts of whimsical wonders. They continue to amaze me with
all the new color combinations and with their new designs.
As quickly as I think I have all I can ever wear or admire, they come up
with another piece of art that I have to own.
I started collecting old bakelite jewelry but just don’t find it as much
fun or exciting as the Shultz bakelite pieces. Consequently, my
collection just kept growing and getting more exciting with every new piece.
I hope you will enjoy their bakelite jewelry as much as I do.
Q&A interview with
What was your very first Shultz piece?
Barbara: I couldn’t just buy one piece — I was
so excited when I saw it that I bought about 20 pins and 5 bangles.
SHULTZ bakelite hand carved cat
face brooch with dangling reverse carved apple juice fish bowl, 3-1/2"
by 2". This is an earlier Shultz piece with amazing carving and
SHULTZ bakelite orange, khaki
and black chunky two row check bangle, rare colors in this rare older
piece of Shultz, 2-1/2" by 1" by 5/8". It looks lovely with another
bangle on the web site, number B63857
View here. #B63856
SHULTZ bakelite moon-over-Miami bakelite brooch with scenic palm
tree, sun and flamingo in green, yellow and sunset, 3-1/3" by 2". This piece
is in the book "Bakelite Pins" by Karima Parry, page 148.
Question: And now that you have such a fabulous
collection, can you pick a favorite? Or one that you seem to wear most
Barbara: I have several favorites. They
made me a fabulous apple juice and black
parrot pin; an apple juice, carved and very laminated palm tree; a carved
alligator bangle plus several really special one-of-a-kinds that I could
SHULTZ bakelite red transparent
parrot head brooch with black face and beak, glass eye, rare color, 3-1/3".
SHULTZ bakelite and Lucite palm tree
brooch with multi-colored leaves and clear trunk, an early piece,
3-1/3". This piece is in the book "Bakelite Pins" by Karima Parry, page
SHULTZ bakelite red carved bow
brooch with dangling bakelite butterscotch buttons, 4" by 2-1/2". #B64185
SHULTZ bakelite rare alligator bangle
with yellow swirl, amazing carving, 2-1/2" by 1-1/4" by 1/3".
SHULTZ bakelite very rare red
monkey carved brooch with laminated yellow bananas, swinging arm, 3-1/4"
by 2-1/2". This was carved by Ester and polished by Ron, as is true of
many of their brooches. This piece is in the book Bakelite Pins"
by Karima Parry, page 173. View
I wear a clear and black checked bangle with pair of clear bakelite
with black dots at least 3 times a week. I wear several bangles
day. I wear more pins in the winter because I wear more jackets.
SHULTZ bakelite bowtie
bangle, cream with black dots, 2-1/2" by 1" by 1/4" and coordinating
bakelite bowtie bangle, black with cream dots, 2-1/2" by 1" by 1/3".
#B31842 and #B31843
Note: the white parts of these bangles are now butterscotch since, like
all bakelite, it has oxidized over time. It can be polished back to the
original 1940s colors.
SHULTZ bakelite clear bangle set with black fingernails dots.
Over the ensuing years, these have turned back to apple juice instead of
clear, as all vintage bakelite does.
SHULTZ bakelite amazing slices
checked bangle with a rainbow of colors with a burgundy moon and cream
checked center layer, 2-1/2" by 1-1/4" by 1/3".
SHULTZ bakelite three row check
bangle with red and black center row checks and yellow and green checked
edges, 2-5/8" by 1-5/8" by 1/3". #B64684
SHULTZ bakelite very rare 3 row
checks bangle, red swirl base with small checks in cream, yellow, green,
aqua, blue, lavender, pea green, peach and purple, a real treat, 2-1/2"
by 1" by 1/3". View
SHULTZ bakelite green swirl
bangle with cherry motif in red, black and green, 2-1/2" by 1-1/4" by 1/2"
SHULTZ bakelite wide green bangle
with dots in a rainbow of colors, 2-1/2" by 2-1/2" by 1-5/8" by 1/3".
SHULTZ bakelite two row bangle
in transparent green with multiple opaque colors, 2-1/2" by 1" by 1/3".
Question: When did you first meet the Shultz’?
Barbara: I met them years
ago in the 1990s. We met for lunch and I shopped from their van.
Question: Do you think they are doing this as
"art"? In other words, is this a "product" to them
or do they still see each one as a work of art?
Barbara: Tough question–it is an
"art" and Ron gets really tickled with some of his new designs
but they also make their living selling their bakelite.
SHULTZ bakelite slightly saucer
shaped 3-row bangle with red and yellow checked middle row and black and
cream checkerboard dots, 2-1/2" by 7/8" by 1/3".
SHULTZ bakelite laminated red
and yellow bangle with rainbow half dots and black round dots, 2-1/2" by
1-3/4" by 1/3". View
SHULTZ bakelite western theme red
cowboy hat and gloves brooch, 4" by 3". This southwestern themed piece is
in the book Bakelite Pins" by Karima Parry, page 174.
SHULTZ bakelite rare western
theme red Native American with pot brooch, hand carved and painted in
yellow, blue and white with brass brads, 3". This southwestern themed piece
has lots of hand painted detail. #B65383
SHULTZ bakelite red western theme
horseshoe and boots brooch with black and yellow painted trim, 5". This
southwestern themed piece is in the book Bakelite Pins" by Karima Parry,
NOTE: To BUY Shultz Bakelite Jewelry,