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Monday, February 8, 2016
Shopping for estate jewelry is like going on a treasure hunt. The pieces are unique and special, but not all of them are worth the prices they are getting. If you love estate jewelry, it is important to know what to look for so you can get what you paid for and wear it for a long time.
It is important to look for several qualities, the condition of the piece, the craftsmanship, the design and trademarks, and the size of the piece. Many shoppers will use a loupe when they go on the hunt for estate treasures so they can see if it the piece is worth purchasing. If you are unsure of how to use a loupe and what to look for in the jewels and metals, your favorite local jeweler can give you some tips.
Using a loupe when shopping for estate jewelry allows you to get an upclose look at damage. Some jewelry artisans are good at hiding solder marks, but most loupes will reveal them. When you use the loupe, remember that it is not a magnifying glass. Both eyes need to be open, but only one eye looks through the loupe. If you use it correctly, you can see fine details clearly.
When you are trying to determine if a piece of jewelry is truly authentic, there are a few things to do. The first thing is to look for a mark on the backside of the piece. Bring a list of marks with you so you can determine the authenticity. Because estate jewelry is so popular, people have realized there is a big market in knockoffs. Even reputable dealers can be taken advantage of with quality reproductions.
If you are looking at an expensive piece of estate jewelry, it can be helpful to get an appraisal, especially if you do not know the seller. When it comes to authentic, vintage pieces, knowledge is the best tool to help you get a good deal. It is a good idea to go with your gut feelings before you commit to spending large amount of dollars on a piece that seems fishy.
If you are going to build a collection of estate jewelry, it is a good idea to do some reading and investigation. Looking at museum pieces, reading books, and asking questions will help you build the knowledge you need to buy the perfect pieces for you. It will not take long before you learn what designers are your favorite and what marks to look for.
It is also important to decide what type of collection you want to build. Some people simply build collections of vintage pieces that they want to wear, without concern for posterity and investment. Others just want to build an investment in historical pieces of expensive jewelry. When you do decide to build a collection, know that a quality jewelry box from Chasing Treasure is the best way to store any type of vintage, historical, or estate jewelry.