Pools of solder would only be on a piece that has been altered or repaired. Another thing to look for are oval or round metal pads where the pin has been attached to the back of the brooch. This is also a sign that the piece has been altered. When I first started buying jewelry I came across this unusual 14k gold filled piece with a "c" clasp pin and a "hook" on the backside of what looks to me like a pendant. After some research I learned what it really is. Is this a brooch or a pendant? Have you seen this before? Take this poll and leave a comment. Black jewelry can be found in abundance at flea markets, estate sales, and antique stores.
Identifying what the black material is can make a big difference in determining when it was made and how much it could be worth. Black jewelry most likely made of one of the following: There are ways to test each one of these materials to determine what it is. Auctions on eBay are fun to watch.
Clue 1: Fittings and Findings for Earrings
I like to look up different styles and periods of jewelry to see what comes up and how much it sells for. This helps me to understand the market better. Then when I shop at estate sales, auctions, and antique stores, I have a better idea of what I am looking at. I also come in with a price in mind. The use of color gemstones and enamel correlates to architecture and decorative art of the times. For example, color in the Renaissance was almost gaudy, while the use of color during the Victorian Era was somber because the death of Prince Albert caused Queen Victoria to declare an extended period of mourning.
After the Victorian Era, the period of Art Nouveau utilized soft and delicate colors with rich gold and silver metals. This was short-lived as the Art Deco era moved to the forefront with its use of bolder colors and geometric designs. A devil-may-care attitude influenced the look. Color palettes dominated different time periods throughout history. Knowing which color gemstones were predominant at certain times in history goes a long way in helping to date a piece of jewelry. Hallmarks and markings are an important clue to help date a piece of jewelry.
Most often these marks are hidden on the inside of a shank on a ring, the inside of a bracelet, or on the inside back of an earring. Using your loupe, you will often find some kind of mark identifying the jeweler, designer, retailer, or manufacturer. If you bring this to a jeweler, they may be able to date the piece based on the marks. These marks can also make a tremendous difference on the value and collectability of the jewelry. Remember that the value is not always about the intrinsic value.
The trademark can also provide information about when and where a piece was made. Good sources for this information can be found at: The photo shown here is a sterling silver filigree camphor glass necklace. Dated about , it features the "Order of the Eastern Star" in the center. The center star has five enamel points and with five different images. However, this piece is not all authentic. The open center panel has been taken off and replaced with this rectangular piece. You can see how it does not fit perfectly. Look on the outer edges and you will see the inconsistency of the space around it.
On the back is a small screw that attaches this shape from the frame. I showed this to my jeweler. He said these pieces were designed so that different pieces could be changed out. It is bothersome that the center shape does not fit properly within the framed shape. This does affect the value and aesthetics.
This is a great introduction to some of the best vintage costume designers to be on the look out for. Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.
Wish I would have seen this years ago it would have been helpful. I love collecting beautiful jewelry. I'm not sure what is giving people the impression someone will be appraising their jewelry, or even answering their questions, as nowhere is it even suggested - much less stated - that these services will be provided. The reason you are not getting responses is because you are posting them in a "comments" forum. The author is asking for your comments on her article: What would you have liked to learn about?
But, I'm confused about something that is probably under my nose, so to speak. I see all these posts for help, but I don't see any responses. The Clasp diagram is great! Is there a way to know how long each style was used? Only the 's indicates it's still used. Does anyone have information on the designer or mark "Vero. All I know is that Vero jewelry, I think only brooches, was made in the s, as late as the 80s. I have 2 Halloween brooches, which I haven't seen anywhere else: I have a old ring that I bought for my sixth birthday.
It had alternated stones of light and dark yellow stones the entire ring with these circle stones in atotal Val total shape with and adjusted band pending printed what is it worth??? I have a signed YSL black runway cuff bracelet that I wish I could find someone to authenticate and date it. I had a local YSL store look at it, they couldn't but sent a picture to their Paris store and they couldn't either.
Said its too old and they don't have data back to the early 60s to look at.? Were can I go that someone may know about it. I can take picture if you would like to see it. I have what i believe is an old ring. Ita a birthstone ring with five stones and a silver band holding them in. The band is screwed in. If i sent a picture would you know when this style was used? I don't know the particular name for it, but I do actually own some because of ebay auctions.
I'm pretty sure that I have seen them worn in in period movies set around the 's or so, usually on a longish, medium-heavy chain, and then pinned up to the side so that the chain is made to 'dangle' in some sort of artful display. Or, maybe it's just as simple as to give the owner a choice: Hmmm, pendant or brooch? My previous post described a brooch or pendant that could also be worn on a chain and it's heavy metal. It's not the thin open heart of Luchenbooth hearts rather solid with intricate designs and I can't find any kind of lettering on it at all. Can someone please help me.
I have a gold heart brooch with crown on top of it with what resembles a family crest of a crown with cross at top of crown on a green colored background and it has a c clasp.
It is thicker than a modern post - even a screw back. To be able to wear the earrings I am going to have to get the posts replaced. How will this affect value? I received an old brooch from a relative. I don't know who it belonged to or where it came from.
Tools for Dating Vintage Costume Jewelry
Only when I cleaned it did I realize it was silver. It appears to have a clasp unchanged from the 's, has filigree and round silver discs and tear drops that dangle from it. I had a jeweler get the marks off the back for me: H within a circle then S I have researched this myself for days with no luck and am asking for help. There is no indication that anything on it was altered. Hi I have got an eternity gold ring that I think is very old. N or C but reversed and N. Can you help me to determine the age of my ring please? This is a great article on vintage jewelry.
It's very informative-I'm just learning about the artists and their distinct talents. These 5 clues are a wonderful place for me to begin. Can anyone tell me anything about Tramp Art. I have a piece and know nothing about it. Can you help me to determine the age of my old Jet lignite bracelet that has a cameo on it. Hello, I have several pieces of jewelry that were my Mom's and probably my Grandmother's and great Aunt's.
One piece, in particular, is a very large copper Indian vintage necklace that I need to find the value of. She also has several Ivory necklaces and some scrimshaw bracelets and ring, a star ruby and diamond ring, that dates back to the early s, which has a very unusual shape and other valuable pieces.
5 Easy Clues for Dating Antique or Vintage Jewelry
Where do I go to a reputable place who will give me an idea of what these pieces are worth. Any info you can provide me would be greatly appreciated. The colors of the star are in the correct order, however, it is not facing the correct direction. The white ray should be pointing down. This also suggests that it is not original as an Eastern Star member would know the correct way it is worn. The colors on the star are incorrect but I don't know if it is just the way it photographed.
The star should be blue, yellow, white, green, and red. I'm in the process of sorting out my jewellery that I have inherited from my two grandmas and my mum. Your website is proving to be very helpful. To give you an idea of time both my Grandmas were born in the late s and died during the s so your article is so helpful. However are three items in my collection that I have no idea about. They are threaded on a piece of string. They feel like they are made of hardened glass or ceramic. However, they are covered with the most intricate beautiful minute coloured flower patterns on both sides, around the edges and even into the holes at both ends of each one.
All patterns are different on each of these 'pendants' in blues, yellows, white, green and russett red. They look quite amazing and don't deserve to be tied together on a piece of string. They remind me of some Japanese prints. Can anyone help me work out what they are please. Hi I just purchased a camphor piece and cannot figure out if it's authentic, can anyone help? I have a larger cross pendant with cabochon stones, possibly gold plate. It is only marked with a number I can't find anything about this cross and I do not see anything similar.
I think the unidentified piece of jewelry is a holder for a watch or decorative fob, which would hand from the hook at the bottom. Thanks for this resource. I have a beautiful piece possibly pendant that has an unusual clasp on the back that I cannot identify. I have searched and searched but no one shows it.
Thanks for posting this. I ended up getting a pair of earrings and could not figure out when the post was made. Your article is the first one I've seen on the web which actually helped me. A few months back I purchased some rather non-descript earrings from a thrift store. I and my daughter love unique pieces. I almost passed them over until I noticed the screw on backs. I had never seen this before and thought surely they must be old. They are thin metal flowers and the other a simple circle. I think they are the screw-on for non-pierced ears. I cannot add any knowledge I'm afraid as I have only recently started collecting.
My comment is a question that brought me to this page which I know will be very helpful in my new hobby. I'm not sure how to word this question about a particular pair of earings so thst it can be understood but, I'll try. I found a pair of screw back vintage earrings that can also bd worn as pierced earrings. There are no discernable markings on the earrings with the naked eye. Has anyone seen this this before?
They are not pierced earrings that have the screw on backs. I hope this was clear. Really interesting video - well done. And the section on Black Jewelry was the best and easiest to understand that I have read so far. I think this video is excellent. Thank you for making it.
I am so glad I can help share it here. I have heard an old dentist talk about Gutta-percha. I think he told me he used it in root canals!
Wonderful lens, and very informative. Pinned to 2 of my boards: I would post the link, but the spam filter won't let me. The mystery piece is a convertible piece of jewelry called a brooch-pendant. It can hang on a chain or be pinned to the clothing. You can search on Ebay for similar pieces. What a surprise to find my video showing here!
Thank you for highlighting it. If I had to do it over again, it would be of higher quality but, when I did the video, only smaller file sizes were allowed. This is so informative. And I thought it was going to be about dating jewelry instead of men! The piece of jewelry above is a watch fob brooch.
The hook on the back is to hang a watch chain from and the pin is usually pinned on the outside garment. I have a pair of earrings that have. I've tried to find this online and have had no luck. I have pictures of them. I know they were not made to be worn on the french wires they are on. You know Replica Christian Louboutin Daffodile mm Suede Pumps ChartreuseKnockoffs,Fake when you see the brand, and you know they're worn by some of the world's most famous women. Replica Christian Louboutin Daffodile mm Suede Pumps Chartreuse christian louboutin isolde replica Knockoffs,Fake were inspired by an employee's nail polish, so it's only fair that those same red bottom shoes red soles inspired a manicure called, what else Replica christian louboutin replica Christian Louboutin Daffodile mm Suede Pumps Chartreuse Knockoffs,Fake , Shoes size: This has been so helpful as I have inherited a lot of jewelry and no nothing about it.
Thanks for the jump start. It has a spring inside the ring that allows it to open and snap closed. A variation of this is the sport ring clap, which works the same way, but instead of a nub, it has a ridged end used to open the ring. Foldover clasps were used on both bracelets and necklaces. These could be either narrow or wide, depending on the width of the pieces. Pieces with stones would sometimes have foldover clasps that were decorated with matching stones. The sister hook clasp was popular in the s and s.
It had two scissor-like hooks that opened in the middle, then overlapped each other when closed. Early designs were rectangular in shape. Monet had a patented, rounded sister clasp used in its jewelry in the s and s. In addition, there were some specialty clasps used, such as snap clasps, unique pin clasps found on wide link and bangle bracelets, and unique hook clasps. As with bracelets, commonly used vintage necklace clasps include ring clasps, foldover clasps, and box clasps.
Often oval shaped, the long hook was inserted and locked into place. Usually, the necklace had a chain that allowed the hook to use any of the chain links, making the necklace length adjustable. The S-hook clasp is a variation on the hook, with a rounded, S shape. Older pieces will show some darkening of the metal, looking more like brass. In the kidney wire was introduced. This was a more sturdy and secure fastener, as the wire was secured with a hook at the bottom of the earring.
Both fish hooks and kidney wire earring backs are still in use today. Post earrings also known as stud earrings were also common at this time and normally the studs were threaded so that the backs of the earrings could be secured with screws. Up until the s all earrings were made for pierced ears. In the screw-back earring was invented, allowing women without pierced ears to wear earrings. The earring clip was patented in and by the s became the preferred earring style for women without pierced ears.
The clip mechanism has been improved over time and clip earrings are still quite popular today. You can view it here: There are additional attributes that help to identify and date pieces. Other jewelry parts such as the metal, plating, stones, and bead characteristics can help determine the origin and age of jewelry. These are additional topics that I plan to write about in the future. I hope this article has been helpful to you.
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Please click the comments link below this article to add your comments. To share this article, use the share buttons below. You can also use the Social Media buttons in the right sidebar to visit my pages. Christine, I was impressed with the information you provided.
It is simaler to an oval shape. Split at top section of oval. The strange part is one side front hook is straight. The back half of clasp, how I see a tpye of safety latch. Anyway I would like to know and learn more about jewelry. You have peaked my interest more than before reading your article. I sometimes ramble and get lost in the thinking of it. Anyway these earring clasps are different. The back piece has an opening for the front piece to go in thus securing it better. I was wonder wher I could find pictures of all different styles. Thank you for letting me ramble on, too.
This is such great information. Thank you for taking the time to write it. I am bookmarking it for future reference. Very informative and loaded with tons of valuable information for future use! Thank you so much for leading the path for some of us who are learning! Do you know of somebody who repairs Italian micro-bead jewelry? It is one of the very few things she had left that he gave her, so I would like to have it restored.
Can you direct me to anybody who might have the resources missing beads and one missing pin to restore it? You might want to try Etsy — there are a lot of craft people there who work with jewelry. Recently purchased a Czech necklace and did not know it came from a smokers home. How do you clean the smell? Joanne, you might try putting the necklace in a plastic bag with a slice of bread — the bread should absorb the odor.
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One is a bear claw with mink inside middle with pearl inset. Your information is very good for me as a beginner in her sixties. Thank you again Christine for sharing your well researched useful information with us. I find it very helpful that you also show photos along with the information, making it much easier to learn about the different jewelry styles and eras.
A Wealth of Information I am anxious to start using. The Photos Really do Help with Identifying. Thank You for all Your Research Efforts. Thank you for your kind comments, Tammie. I thought your article was very informative. It was interesting to learn about all the different closures, and I will try to keep that in mind next time I go antique shopping. However I was hoping to learn about unique closures. Christina, I too have a bracelet with a heart and rod closure. It large pale gold pearls and i purchased it from China close to 10 years ago.
I started collecting bracelets that had these kind of closures, but did not know why. I guess, my guesses have been paying off for me, if I ever sell the collection, that is…oh, and something is only worth what some one else is willing to pay for it. In the crest CM and bottom HR. Any idea or a good reference to further research? How have I not found your blog before. So far I am loving it. Wish I could stay longer buy I have to go for now.