Vintage jewelery does have its perks, and there are a lot of people who are interested in it. With vintage jewelery you’re not only buying jewelery, but you’re buying a piece of history which vintage jewelery always has, not matter how small a piece it might be. In a lot of situations people are not sure how exactly they would approach vintage jewelery shopping, because they get frightened by all the different stories of scams related to not just vintage jewelery, but all the jewelry in general and everything else related to precious metals.
Even though the danger of being scammed when buying vintage jewelery is very real and it’s much more easier to scam since vintage jewelery is usually not made of good quality metals, and its pricing isn’t necessarily based on precious metal content, there are ways of how to make sure that vintage jewelry is really vintage and not some faked knock off. As a rule, if you’re not experienced, then you should not relay on your own gut and until you get familiar with jewelry, vintage jewelery and everything else involving it, then you should always consult with professionals, to confirm what you’ve concluded, and until then you should study jewelry history. It’s very important to know history of jewelry, and if you’re a vintage jewelry lover, this will be one of the things that you enjoy the most, but what exactly do you need to know?
Knowing which hallmarks and which designs were prevailing in which century is very important for a vintage jewelery hunter. This can be easily learned by visiting the local library and borrowing a book on the matter, or you can turn to the Internet for information. Visit websites that other vintage jewelery buffs have set up, there you should find first hand information about how to spot a particular jewelery type, and how to deal with fakes which you might encounter. Pay close attention to hallmarks because they are the first thing that you can spot on jewelry that can help you in eliminating fakes, but only up to a certain point, because hallmarks were only introduced to jewelery sometime at the beginning of 20th century.
You might hear some professionals say that the best thing to do, when it comes to vintage jewelery, is to only relay on jewelery which has hallmarks, to be genuine. This might be a mistake because of what I said before, there can still be older vintage jewelry without hallmarks.
What to do then, how to look for vintage jewelry? Start with relaying on hallmarks first, and when you get a decent grasp of how things work, then move on up on trying to find older pieces. For this you’re gonna have to learn about testing precious metals with acids, scratch testing and so on. Even when you think you know enough, if the jewelry that you plan on purchasing is a bit more pricier, you should visit a professional jewelry or an appraiser, to confirm your decision, and to prevent paying for something that isn’t worth much in the first place.