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Collecting vintage jewellery: Where to start

Collecting vintage jewellery is about more than aesthetics; it’s an investment in history and craftsmanship. Each piece offers a glimpse into the past, with designs reflecting the traditions and skills...

Collecting vintage jewellery is about more than aesthetics; it’s an investment in history and craftsmanship. Each piece offers a glimpse into the past, with designs reflecting the traditions and skills of their time. For enthusiasts and collectors, vintage jewellery isn’t just an accessory—it’s a meaningful connection to a bygone era.

 Why Collect Vintage Jewellery?

Vintage jewellery stands out for its unique blend of historical insight and beauty. Eras are defined by motifs, designers, the established culture and the counter culture, creating a snapshot into the past.

Collectors are often drawn to these pieces not only for their aesthetic appeal but also because they represent a tangible investment that can appreciate over time. Unlike new items, vintage pieces are not widely reproduced, making each find a rare addition to any collection. Moreover, the craftsmanship seen in vintage jewellery often surpasses that of many modern creations, showcasing techniques and materials that are no longer commonly used today.

Key Considerations When Collecting Vintage Jewellery

Authenticity: Ensuring the authenticity of vintage jewellery is paramount. Collectors should seek pieces with verifiable provenance and may wish to consult experts to establish these, including gemologists, to confirm the authenticity of gemstones.

Condition: The condition of vintage jewellery can vary significantly. Even more so with age! If you're buying a piece that needs work, be sure to have some knowledge of restoration possibilities and costs which can be very high. If in doubt, always get advice on the durability of a piece to ensure it will withstand continued use.

Budgeting: Setting a budget helps focus your search and prevents overspending. Be prepared to allocate funds not just for purchasing but also for potential restoration costs.

Insurance and Care: Protecting your investment is as important as making it. Securing adequate insurance for vintage jewellery is advisable, considering its potential value and rarity. Consider whether your policy will insure jewellery when it's stored in the house as well as being worn. And will it be covered for domestic and international wear? Check before you pack! Proper care and storage are also essential.

Sourcing: Look both online and in-person at antique stores, auctions, estate sales, and specialty jewellery shops to uncover valuable pieces.

Building a Relationship with Trusted Vendors

Establishing a good relationship with trusted vendors can significantly enhance your vintage jewellery collecting experience. A reliable vendor helps in sourcing authentic and high-quality pieces and provides valuable insights into the care and valuation of rare items.

Starting a Vintage Jewellery Collection on a Budget

We are always asked for advice on how to start your vintage jewellery collection. For most of us that means budgeting! Define the types of pieces you want to collect and organise your wish list into broad categories like bracelets, rings, and chains.

Time Investment: Be prepared to invest time in hunting down items. Patience is key in finding the right pieces at the right price.

Consider Construction and Durability: Balance your collection with a mix of more affordable hollow items and selected solid pieces where it counts. You may seek out hollow earrings (where the lower weight will be appreciated by your lobes!) but decide to spend more on a solid bracelet, for example.

Buy what you love

Starting and growing a vintage jewellery collection is an enriching journey that combines passion, history, and personal style. Whether you're a seasoned collector or new to the field, the right pieces can add depth and distinction to your collection. Explore our curated selection of vintage jewellery and discover pieces that resonate with your style and spirit.

 

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