You were cleaning the attic of your grand-grandparents’ house when you discovered an old jewelry box with a couple of pieces of antique jewelry inside and it seems like they are made of precious jewelry metals. Did you just strike gold, metaphorically and literary speaking? Or you found just a couple of trinkets with more sentimental value than actual worth? To find the answer, read further. In this article, you will find out how to tell how much your antique jewelry is worth and how to sell it.
How can you tell you have an actual valuable antique jewelry piece?
Besides taking your antique jewelry piece to an appraisal, there are three methods of telling whether you have a valuable piece on your hands or not. Of course, you will still need an appraisal to discover its actual value. But firstly you should know if it’s worth taking it to the jewelry shop or not.
Check the hallmarks on your antique jewelry
Unless the jewelry you discovered is over 100 years old, you will notice some hallmarks on it. Rings and bracelets usually have them on the inside of the band, necklaces have them engraved on the clasp, while earrings feature hallmarks on the post. If the jewelry piece is over 100 years old, chances are that the hallmarks may have worn off. Of course, jewelry that doesn’t contain any precious metals or stones doesn’t bear hallmarks. If you don’t see any hallmark on your antique jewelry pieces, it is either very old and valuable or worthless. In this case, only a jewelry appraisal will let you know what you have on your hands.
In case you do notice hallmarks, know there may be two types:
- One hallmark that indicates the metal content of the antique jewelry piece
- One that indicates the manufactures, country of origin or designer (this hallmark doesn’t always appear though)
Regarding the metal content of the antique jewelry piece, just remember those words and numbers:
- Gold can be shown through hallmarks like 10k, 14k, 18k, 22k or 750, 585, 375, 417
- Platinum is 950, PLAT or PLATINUM
- Silver can be 925, 800, Silver or Sterling
The jewelry weight
In case you have discovered antique jewelry that doesn’t have a hallmark, before taking it to an appraisal, check its weight. Silver and gold weight more than brass and pewter. For example, if you find a chain that looks gold, simply compare its weight to a gold chain you already have. Fake gold and silver feel much lighter than real ones.
The jewelry’s prongs
If you still can’t tell if you have found a genuine and valuable antique jewelry piece, inspect the prongs, if it has any. Jewelry that isn’t valuable, used stones glued into place. Antique jewelry, on the other hand, will always feature gemstones set in a prong or bezel setting.
Factors that affect an antique jewelry piece’s value
Now that you are sure you have discovered something of real value in the attic, it’s time to find out how much you can expect to gain from it. The actual value you will find out only after an appraisal but, to know what to expect, here are some of the factors that influence the jewelry piece’s worth.
Time & condition
Just like with wine, an antique jewelry piece is worth more if it is older. But, of course, its condition plays a significant role as well. Discoloration or dull patches may decrease its value, as well as faulty prongs, clasp or posts. Even if you take your antique jewelry piece for a repair, you may still not receive as much as you would have if it were in perfect condition. Evidence of repairs also decreases the value.
If you want to make sure you receive the maximum amount for your jewelry piece, take it to the jewelry shop for a professional cleaning. Don’t try to clean it at home because you may ruin it.
You can’t usually put a price tag on history but, when it comes to antique jewelry, you can. This happens because certain styles are more popular on the market today and, as a result, certain history periods become more profitable when it comes to antique jewelry.
Professional jewelers know that rarity of certain jewelry pieces. You can’t tell it yourself unless you do a lot of research. But if you take your antique jewelry piece to appraisal you will also gain insight into its rarity on the market.
As you may have guessed, gemstones, especially diamonds, add a lot of value to your antique jewelry piece. The cut, carat weight, and clarity of the diamonds, for example, will significantly affect its value.
We wish you best of luck with appraising your antique jewelry piece and discovering that you can finally afford that beach house you’ve been dreaming of. In the meantime, visit Ana Luisa online jewelry shop to view our unique designer jewelry collections.
Others interesting posts about this topic :
- Where to Find the Best Jewelry Sale?
- Our Favorite Freshwater Pearls Jewelry by Ana Luisa
- How to Buy Agate Jewelry
- How to Check the Diamond Quality
- Top 6 Essential Jewelry Pieces for Any Woman
- Discover Our Top Picks for Capricorn Jewelry
- Sagittarius Jewelry Pieces That You Can’t Wait to Try On
- Scorpio Jewelry Pieces that We Love
- Focus on Leo Jewelry – What Are the Right Pieces for You?
- Best Cancer Jewelry Pieces That You Need to Have
- Taurus Jewelry – Which Pieces Define Your Style?
- Aries Jewelry – Discover the Designs that Represent Your Astrological Sign
- Top Pisces Jewelry Designs that You Will Love
- Focus on Aquarius Jewelry – What Should You Get?
- Trending this Season: Zodiac Jewelry
- Trending 14k Gold Jewelry This Season
- Travel Jewelry – The Best Travel Inspired Designs
- Mothers Day Gift Ideas This Year
- Top Ideas for Mothers Day Jewelry
- Our Top Favorite Pink Gemstones
- How to Buy Black Pearls
- Freshwater Pearls vs. The Saltwater Varieties
- What Jewelry to Offer as a Valentines Day Gift
- Ana Luisa’s Most Popular Jewelry
- Our Top Picks for January Jewelry
- What Is Coin Jewelry?
- Valentines Jewelry: Top Gift Ideas
- Most Important Jewelry Trends this Year
- What Gemstone Jewelry Should Your Wear in 2019?
- Jewelry Gift Boxes Ideas for Christmas
- What Makes a Good Jewelry Gift Box?
- How to Find Jewelry Coupon Codes: Mejuri Coupon Code & Others
- Ana Luisa’s Top of the Best Colorless & White Gemstones
- Top Fabulous Red Gemstones
- Everything You Need to Know about Gold Vermeil Jewelry
- Tourmaline Jewelry Buying Guide
- What is ethnic jewelry?
- Topaz Jewelry Buying Guide
- Our Favorite Simple Jewelry Pieces Any Woman Should Have
- How to Buy Lapis Lazuli Jewelry
- Which Are the Best Jewelry Metals for Your Style?
- 14k Gold VS 18k Gold – Which Should You Get?
- Timeless Jewelry Pieces That You Need to Have
- What Is Hypoallergenic Jewelry?
- Top Interesting Cultural Jewelry Pieces
- Garnet Jewelry Buying Guide
- What Is the Winter Jewelry You Need to Have This Season?
- How to Buy Rose Quartz Jewelry
- 5 Reason Why a Jewelry Gift Card is a Great Idea
- How to Buy Malachite Jewelry
- Top Tips When You Buy Jewelry Online
- Top Christmas Jewelry Present Ideas
- What To Avoid When Buying Black Friday Jewelry?
- Birthday Jewelry Guide
- How To Start Your Jewelry Collection
- How To Pick Personalized Jewelry
- How To Buy Opal Jewelry
- Everything You Need To Know About Rhodium Plating
- White Gold Jewelry, Rose Gold and Yellow Gold – Which One Is Right for You?
- What Is Ancient Greek Jewelry and How to Buy It?
- What Is Byzantine Jewelry and Why Should You Have Some?
- How many gold colors are there?
- How to buy freshwater pearls
- How to buy Akoya pearls
- How to buy South Sea Pearls
- How to buy Tahitian Pearls
- What to look for when choosing a jewelry box
- What are chocolate diamonds?
- How to buy Moonstone jewelry
- How to buy jade jewelry
- How to spot fake pearls
- What to do if you have a nickel allergy?
- What is Inlay Jewelry?
- Should you buy 10k gold jewelry?
- Top tips when buying amethyst jewelry
- What are the different diamond cuts?
- Top 10 gems used for semi precious stones jewelry
- What is estate jewelry?
- What is art deco jewelry?
- 7 of the World’s Rarest Gemstones & their value
- Enamel jewelry buying guide
- Discover the most expensive gems in the world
- Top Mom Jewelry Gift Ideas
- Zircon vs cubic zirconia – What is the difference?
- Metal Rings Buying Guide
- White Gold vs Platinum – Do You Know the Difference?
- Silver vs Sterling Silver – What is the difference?
- Rose Gold Jewelry Buying Guide
- Gold dipped jewelry – The difference between vermeil & gold plating
- Gold Plated vs Gold Filled Jewelry: What Is the Difference?
- What you should know about gold plated jewelry