Jewelry has played a critical role in helping individuals express their wealth and prestige for centuries. Antique jewelry is highly sought after for not only its beauty, but its historical value as well. Any jewelry pieces that have some age to them may have been subject to repair or will need to be repaired after you have purchased them.
Here are three tips that you can use to help ensure the jewelry repair process hasn't or won't hurt the overall value of the piece in the future.
1. Check for seams.
Whenever you are investing in antique jewelry, it's important that you check for signs of repair. One of the most common signs that a repair has taken place in the past is the presence of a seam.
Although seams don't inherently hurt the value of the piece, the manner in which the repair was made can significantly impact the aesthetic of an antique jewelry item. You will want to ensure that the seam or solder join is made from the same metal as the body of the piece. This will help camouflage the repair and allow your antique item to retain its value.
2. Look at the closure.
Another important aspect that should be examined before you invest in a piece of antique jewelry is the closure. The clasp on a necklace or bracelet and the pin mechanism on the back of a brooch can tell you a lot about the quality of the piece.
These closures help to date a piece of jewelry, since certain closures were used during certain periods of jewelry making in the past. Poor repairs will often include the replacement of a broken closure with one from a later date. Be sure that any antique jewelry item you invest in has a closure that is original to the production period of the piece.
3. Work with a reputable jeweler.
Once you have purchased an antique jewelry item, you will need to maintain it properly to keep it in functional condition. This means that you will need to partner with a jeweler who has experience working with antique items.
An experienced jeweler will be able to ensure that the fine filigree remains intact and the stone settings don't come loose on your antique items as you enjoy them in the future.
Investing in antique jewelry requires that you be able to identify poor repairs. Look for obvious seams and improper closures, and be sure that you work with a reputable jeweler to help care for your collection of antique jewelry items in the future.