A Guiding to Buying Vintage Jewelry
Shopping for vintage jewelry is like a treasure hunt. There are times when you find the perfect piece within seconds of hitting the sale. You may shop for hours and not find any jewelry worth buying. That is a major contributor to the fun of the whole process. Part of what makes vintage items so special is the fact that they are hard to find. Many newcomers are surprised by how much knowledge is required for vintage shopping. This article discusses some of the basics of shopping for vintage jewelry.
First there is the art deco period. Popular from 1915-1930, the art deco style is characterized by its use of geometric designs like triangles and squares. Flappers of the 1920s are often depicted wearing art deco pieces. Many women today wear the characteristic over-sized necklaces, without realizing the art deco origins of this style. The colors of art deco are usually full of contrast, like black and silver, for example.
Art deco lasted until the mid 1940s, when another style took its place. Retro, as the style is now called, featured chunky, bright shapes. As with art deco, the retro look has also made a comeback recently. Most of the time, these are the two styles of vintage jewelry that you will encounter. The majority of the vintage jewelry you find will be from one of these two periods. Jewelry from the pre-1900s is rare to find outside of specific vintage shops. Any pieces that are newer than these periods are not normally referred to as vintage.
You might be able to find vintage jewellery at secondhand sales, like thrift stores or estate auctions. While you may get a bargain here, you are also just as likely to come up empty handed. There are also stores which specialize in vintage pieces, but you should expect to pay a fair amount more there. If you want to be sure of the quality, however, then you can usually trust the specialized stores. Other people simply do not enjoy looking through piles of old clothes in order to find a nice piece of art deco jewelry. Another great perk of visiting a specialty store is that its employees are usually quite knowledgeable about different vintage styles.
This last section is about the quality of the jewelry you buy including art deco jewellery. If you are just looking for jewelry to wear for fun, then you are better off buying costume jewelry. You can also get imitation vintage jewelry, which has glass or plastic gems. Unless you are a collector or want something to wear for a special occasion, it does not make sense to spend money on the higher-end items. Real vintage jewelry can be very old and thus, fragile. Its components are often worn or rusty. If you take your vintage pieces to a jeweler, he or she can tell you how sturdy the piece is.