Is My Jewelry Vintage?
Any jewelry between 20 and 100 years old can be categorized as "vintage jewelry." However, this term is mostly applied to jewelry produced from 1920’s through 1960s.
Older pieces are considered "antique jewelry. Both vintage and antique jewelry can hold the title of "estate jewelry" if the piece is previously owned.
Jewelry collectors and dealers seek out these collectible pieces for their timeless collection. Jewelry from the Art Deco and Mid-Century periods are especially popular among vintage jewelry lovers.
Jewelry that is constructed from vintage parts cannot be classified as vintage. This jewelry is classified as contemporary jewelry that is "vintage style" or "vintage inspired."
Buying vintage jewelry is a great way to start an heirloom collection or add excitement to your wardrobe.
Vintage jewelry is collectible with value that far surpasses its gemstone or precious metal raw value. The value greatly depends on the piece's condition, history and unique workmanship.
Vintage jewelry is celebrated for its artistry with the majority of pieces handcrafted to perfection using traditional techniques and processes. The inherent value of these ornaments' craftsmanship makes them even more precious.
Care for Vintage Jewelry
• Vintage jewelry needs extra care
Take your vintage pieces to a jeweler who specializes in repairing older jewelry to have it inspected for loose stones and damaged settings or clasps.
• Use a soft brush to clean your vintage jewelry
Do not soak your jewelry in water. Instead, dampen a soft-bristle brush and gently clean away any dust or debris.
• Make sure the jewelry is completely dry before you put it away
Any archivist will tell you humidity is the enemy of preservation. Pat dry your vintage jewelry with a lint-free towel after it’s brush down and then place it on a dry towel and thoroughly dry overnight. After it is completely dry, store your antique jewelry in a fabric-lined box or a glass display case.
Warning: Do not use cleaners that contain vinegar acids or alcohols on vintage jewelry. These harsh chemicals can damage the finish especially on gemstones. Delicate details and precious stones that make an item shine can be tarnished forever if acid-based products are used on it.