Debunking Common Misconceptions About Buying Antique Jewelry
Whether handed down from past generations or discovered serendipitously at a consignment shop, antique jewelry has fascinated and befuddled many prospective buyers. However, numerous myths about antique jewelry make some potential buyers feel hesitant about making a purchase. Debunking common misconceptions about buying antique jewelry might boost your confidence about getting a piece you love.
Know the Difference Between Antique, Vintage, and Estate Jewelry
Not all old jewelry is antique. Here is how antiques professionals define antique, vintage, and estate jewelry:
Antique jewelry: Jewelry that is 100 years or older
Vintage jewelry: Pieces that are 50 to 99 years old
Estate jewelry: Pre-owned jewelry that is less than 50 years old.
Now that we have those definitions straight, let’s move on to clearing up some common misconceptions about buying antique jewelry.
Misconception 1: Antique Jewelry Is Always Too Expensive
While it is true that certain high-caliber antique pieces hold great value, not all antique jewelry will break the bank. Auction houses, dealers, and online marketplaces offer a wide range of options catering to various budget brackets. Armed with the right information and a keen eye, you’ll be able to find affordable treasures to cherish.
Misconception 2: Antique Jewelry Carries Bad Karma
Stories of curses attached to historical jewels have long captured the public’s imagination, perpetuating the misconception that sinister forces infect pieces of antique jewelry. However, when you buy antique jewelry, you are simply acquiring a beautiful piece of art and preserving a little bit of history. If you fall in love with a piece of antique jewelry but are superstitious about acquiring it, you could consult your clergyperson or spiritual advisor for advice.
Misconception 3: You Can Tell if Gold Is Real by Biting It
While it is somewhat true that biting gold can leave a noticeable dent (as gold is a relatively soft metal), this method doesn’t accurately reflect the gold’s purity. In fact, some unscrupulous jewelry makers of the past painted lead, also a soft metal, with gold paint to pass it as real gold. And taking a bite of lead is not a great idea, for obvious reasons.
Instead of relying on your chompers to test gold’s purity, consult a professional jeweler or credible testing lab that can use scientific methods to determine gold’s authenticity.
Misconception 4: You Can’t Wear Antique Jewelry
While some antique pieces may require more care than contemporary items, many are still wearable and very stylish. Wear antique pieces that express your style, regardless of the ephemeral trends of the moment. The lasting beauty and fine artistry of antique jewelry will enhance just about any outfit.
Free from misconceptions about antique jewelry, you can now buy from a reputable dealer with confidence. These dealers can inform you about the piece’s provenance (its prior owners, maker, and history), the caliber of precious metal, and the documented quality of its gems. This will give you peace of mind when it comes to the authenticity and value of the items.
Solvang Antiques is a respected online antiques dealer located in California. We sell vintage jewelry online. If you see a piece you like on our site but have questions about it, contact us for more details.