Tips For Buying Antique And Vintage Jewelry

If you are interested in antique jewelry, one of the places you will find it is at estate sales. You can also check pawn shops, online classifieds, and online vendors. However, knowing where to buy vintage jewelry does you no good if you don’t know what you are buying. Continue reading to learn more about antique and vintage jewelry so you get just what you are looking for.

Important Meanings

  • Antique: Jewelry that is 100 years old or more
  • Costume: Made with non-precious materials
  • Estate: Jewelry that was previously owned
  • Fine: Made with precious materials
  • Vintage: Jewelry that is more than 20 years old with the most popular era being from the 1940s to the 1980s
  • Vintage Reproduction: New jewelry that is made to replicate or based off of vintage jewelry

It is important to know these meanings because they are often used interchangeably and can mean different things to different people. If you know just what you are looking for, you can ask specific details to make sure you are indeed buying an antique or a vintage piece.

Important Things to Look For

When you are looking at any piece of jewelry, you want to inspect it well to make sure you are getting a nice piece. You need to be aware of the condition and the craftsmanship to be sure that the piece is high quality. You should always use a jeweler’s loupe and examine the piece for damage and original parts.

Look on the piece to find a signature or a stamp. A piece of jewelry that has this element is called a “signed” piece and it is worth more money than ones that aren’t signed. You should be familiar with some of the famous names and what they look like so you know when you have a valuable piece worth buying. Some of the more desirable names are Napier, Weiss, and Lisner.

If you are buying online, find out what you can about the seller or company if you intend to spend a lot of money on a piece. Research isn’t really important for $20 costume jewelry that you love just because of how it looks, but if you are wanting a true antique or vintage piece, you need to make sure you are buying from a reputable source.

These are just some tips that can help you be successful when you are purchasing vintage, antique, or estate jewelry. Like with anything, practice makes perfect and you will soon learn what to look for without even having to examine the pieces. Need more help? Contact a company like Crissy Galleries with any questions you have.