Antique jewelry can be sourced in many ways, but the best source is buying and selling your own vintage pieces. By doing this, you’ll get an idea of how your jewelry was made, where it came from, and what it’s currently worth. With that knowledge at hand, you’ll be better equipped to either sell or find a new home for your jewelry collection. Here’s how antique jewelry got made, and why it became such a popular art form.
How did antique jewelry get made?
In the days before mass production, each piece of jewelry was handmade with care and attention to detail. Artisans would start by sketching a design, then carefully selecting each gemstone and metal element to create a one-of-a-kind piece.
The stones would be cut and set by hand, and the metals would be shaped and polished to a high shine.
Every step of the process was done by hand, resulting in a truly unique piece of jewelry. Today, antique jewelry is highly sought-after for its unmatched beauty and craftsmanship. When you wear an antique piece, you are wearing a work of art that has been passed down through the ages.
As with other arts, jewelry underwent a transition in popularity during the 20th century. Art Nouveau and Art Deco styles became more popular, while other styles like Oriental and Indian art fell out of favor.
And then, in the 1940s, came a revival of interest in handcrafts and decorative arts that would last until the late 1970s. Jewelry was one of these crafts that experienced a revival as well. Part of this trend was due to a growing interest in the art of decorative arts.
The same was true of collectibles and hobbies. During the 1940s and 1950s, the popularity of costume jewelry grew, along with the desire to own pieces that were more beautiful and valuable than the mass-produced costume jewelry of the time.
The Popularity of Antique Jewelry
The popularity of antique and vintage jewelry peaked in the 1970s and early 1980s. This was when more people began to appreciate the craftsmanship and style of handcrafted jewelry.
This increase in popularity also led to a rise in demand for antique jewelry, which caused values to increase as well.
The reason antique jewelry is so popular is similar to the reasons why decorative arts like pottery and furniture became so popular during that time: the interest in vintage aesthetic.
You’ll often hear people say that antique jewelry is all about the “retro aesthetic.” That aesthetic is one of the reasons matching sets are so popular.
The History of Antique Jewelry
The history of antique and vintage jewelry is, in many ways, similar to the history of other decorative arts.
During the Colonial period, local artisans began to incorporate European designs and elements into their work. By the early 19th century, these artisans were creating their own designs, styles, and techniques.
This new style of decorative arts was called folk art. It was still being made by local artisans, but it also began to be exported to Europe as well.
The first jewelry designers to be considered to be part of the new world of fashion, rather than folk art, were the likes of Charles Frederick Worth and Oscar de la Renta.
Important characteristics to look for in an antique jewelry piece
When purchasing an antique piece of jewelry, the most important characteristics to look for are age and origin. Age, of course, is a tricky thing to determine.
Different gemstones and metals will have different ages, and even a tool or a hammer can affect the age of a metal. When you do find a piece that has a clear age, though, you can often determine the origin of the piece.
The most expensive antique jewelry pieces
It’s important to keep in mind that antique jewelry value is largely determined by its age, the materials used to make it, and its condition.
Some pieces, though, reach a level of extreme luxury and value that far exceeds other pieces of jewelry. Below, we have a list of the most expensive antique jewelry pieces in the world.
How to find the right antique jewelry piece for you
As we mentioned above, there are several different ways to get your hands on antique jewelry. And if you’d like help to find a piece that matches your unique taste, you can always seek out help from a jewelry appraiser or a jewelry expert friend.
If you’re looking for a less formal way to find a piece that fits your style, you can look through online classified ads or ask your local antique and vintage stores for assistance.
There are also a number of online resources you can use to help you find the right piece. Try reviewing the most expensive antique jewelry pieces, browsing through online stores, or using a search engine to narrow your options down to a few pieces.
Why antique gold jewelry is expensive?
Antique gold jewelry is expensive for a variety of reasons. One reason is that the value of gold has increased significantly over time.
In addition, antique gold jewelry is often made with higher quality materials and craftsmanship than newer pieces.
As a result, it can be more difficult to find antique gold jewelry in good condition, which increases its value.
Finally, many people simply prefer the look of antique gold jewelry to newer styles. The combination of all these factors makes antique gold jewelry a valuable and desirable commodity.
Now that you know how antique jewelry got made, you can appreciate its craftsmanship and find a new home for your own collection. The best way to do this, as we’ve discussed, is to buy and sell your own pieces. When you do so, you’ll get a better idea of what your pieces are worth, and you’ll be able to find a new home for your collection.