A masterful blend of imperial wonder and ill-fated romance, our debut jewelry collection is named for the love story of Napoleon Bonaparte and his empress, Joséphine de Beauharnais.

A white woman faces a blurred castle in the background, her dark curly hair falling to one side. She wears a white silk gown open and falling off her shoulders to reveal a single gold chain with a heart charm at the end.
La Semeuse Coin Pendant Necklace

legacy & lore

It is said of young Joséphine that a fortune teller spoke greatness over her future—divining her path to go beyond even the title of Queen. Fabrication or fate, the moment Napoleon met Joséphine's eyes across a ballroom, it is undeniable that their tangled souls would be writ upon stone as the love story of the century.

“Incessantly I live over in my memory your caresses, your tears, your affectionate solicitude…To live within Joséphine is to live in the Elysian fields."

An oil painting of a white woman wearing an elegant emerald, pearl, and diamond crown and matching necklace and earrings. She is pensive and lovely.
Portraits of Joséphine de Beauharnais and Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte
An oil painting of Napoleon, a white Frenchman wrapped in a vivid red cloak riding a white horse into battle.

guardian of his heart

The central locket worn in the opening image is inspired by Napoleon’s deep love for Joséphine de Beauharnais. He mailed her passionate letters from his campaigns, and, even after their separation, kept his undying love for her close to his heart. As for the coins, cast from vintage pieces, we imagine them as the Greeks might have—tokens of affection and promises to pass to the realm beyond.

the rise & fall of a romantic empire

“Your tears rob me of reason, and inflame my blood. Believe me it is not in my power to have a single thought which is not of thee, or a wish I could not reveal to thee.”

Napoleon's letters to Joséphine reveal his unbridled devotion, yet as the ancients say—the brightest flames must dwindle soon to ash. 

Five years of passion splintered into silence as these lovers fell apart, yet this was not their end.

A masterful profile of a white woman with elegant, dark brown hair pulled up in a low bun, heavy lashes, and dark red lips wearing oval black earrings with a golden lion. Her high-collared black shirt sets the piece off.

Valour Lion Stud Earrings

A hundred moons after their divorce, crumpled upon his deathbed, Napoleon is said to have cried out for Joséphine one last time. 

And though it is but a rumor, his last breath was released across the words of Joséphine eternally captured in her final letter.

These pieces of jewelry are regal, heartfelt, and enchanting, inspired by the coins, shields, and fleur-de-lis of Old World France. Every piece holds a story of the sort Joséphine was renowned to tell, taken from portraiture, records, and tales of noble lore.

A golden hand pendant necklace dangles over a rough stone statue in front of a neutral background.

Hand Pendant Necklace
A white woman gazes into the distance with soft brown eyes and pink lips, her hand curled beneath her chin to point towards a crescent moon earring.
Moon and Star Earrings

jewelry for star-crossed lovers

One might not suspect Napoleon of being enraptured by the stars, those timeless symbols of the divine feminine and guiding light, yet his belief in their counsel was profound, his trust unreserved. This dreamy, mismatched pair of crescent moon and star jewelry reminds us to seek our destiny, holding faith in their light. Found in two pairs of earrings, a necklace, and two charms.

“Without his Josephine, without the assurance of her love, what is left him upon earth? What can he do?”


gilded cage & golden chains

Mathilde Necklace

Simple, evocative, and set with a green stone to harken the tranquility of the natural world, this necklace is named for Princesse Mathilde who painted her own path in the Bonaparte legacy with watercolor and design.

A white woman

Mathilde Green Drop Necklace

Merengo Pegasus Intaglio Bracelet

This elegant bracelet is punctuated with a lucky pegasus intaglio encircled with pearls and black diamond crystal pavé. 

We named the piece for Merengo, Napoleon’s trusted horse that carried him safety in and out of battle and home to his true love.

A white woman faces the right wearing a black silk top that looks antique. From her ears dangle a regal pair of blue-stone earrings, and around her wrist is a blue intaglio with a pegasus on a golden chain.
Merengo Intaglio Pegasus Bracelet

charms enchanting as a lost empress

While antiquing in France, we discovered a small collection of vintage religious emblems and prayer coins. This line of charms is cast from those original, unique pieces.

About Fallen Aristocrat

Fallen Aristocrat is a jewelry line inspired by travel, history, and imperfect things that tell a story. Handmade in the United States, the jewelry is cast in brass and luxuriously plated in antiqued gold for a storied look of time.

Designer Paula Danyluk, owner of the renowned Paris Market in Savannah, Georgia, has long been drawn to things with a past. Musing on her own personal collection of vintage charms and French coins, she set out to create a new generation of heirloom jewelry by creating pieces that feel at once extravagant and everyday, modern with a vintage appeal.

Our debut collection of Fallen Aristocrat is named the First Empire and features four series: Bonaparte, Romonov, Museum, and Lover’s Eye—but we've added on others since. Explore them in our collections at the top of the site!

A white woman in a vintage lace white dress holds a round, golden coin pendant on a golden chain, a charm bracelet around her wrist and a long white ring on her finger.

La Semeuse Coin Pendant Necklace, Joséphine Charm Bracelet

All fine photography is by Jamie Beck, featuring model Louis Pascal at Chateau Gudanes in 2018.

Fallen Aristocrat