Monet/Monocraft Products Company (1919-present)
The Monocraft Products Company was founded in Providence in 1919 by brothers Michael and Joseph Chernow. They first produced gold-plated monograms for handbags.
The business expanded and around 1937 began manufacturing costume jewelry under the name Monet. In the 1940s the company started using sterling silver and silver plating along with gold plating used earlier. Later collections included large multicolour rhinestones to be superseded by collections focussing on the design and hue of the metal itself.
In 1934, the Chernow brothers hired designer Edmond Mario Granville. Granville had a background in fine jewelry from Cartier. He remained the company’s sole designer until the late 1950s and was executive designer until he died in 1969. His leadership would span a major transition in the company’s history, from its humble beginnings as Monocraft to its eventual acclaim as Monet.
In 1981 Monet was licensed to manufacture and sell the costume jewelry of French designer Yves Saint Laurent in the United States. After the success of the Saint Laurent collaboration, Monet began manufacturing Christian Lacroix costume jewelry in 1995.