Monday 11 January 2016

How do I value my old costume jewellery?

Can you value my old costume jewellery? 

This is the most asked question that comes through to us. How do you value your vintage costume jewellery? Because you want a quick cheap answer without actually making any effort. Here is how it is quite easy to do yourself. It just takes time and the ability to use the search function on any of the search engines. Though I would recommend that you use the Google search first.

black diamante vintage costume necklace 1960s
Black diamante vintage necklace 1960s of age.

How do I value my old costume jewellery?

Okay - to start to make sure that you have old costume jewellery - also known as fashion jewellery or not made of precious metal (silver, gold or platinum) Get a magnifier or lens to look at the back, the clasp and sides of your piece. Look for a mark - take your time with this and look very closely at all parts of your brooch, necklace, bracelet, etc. If you do not know what the mark is that you find - then use the search engines to see if you can trace it.  Remember that if you have a very old piece of antique jewellery that it may not be marked gold/silver.

If your costume jewellery is damaged ie - stones missing, clasp broken, links broken, etc. This will devalue your piece considerably. It may only be of use to use as repair or spares. Then sell it with any other broken jewellery on eBay or give to a crafter friend. 

So now you have confirmed that you have costume jewellery or otherwise. You may have found a makers mark. So again do your research and lookup about the maker, then look at a range of similar jewellery to find an average value.  You may be able to find the actual piece you have, which will make it much easier to value.

amber glass vintage costume bracelet by Sphinx
Amber glass vintage costume bracelet by Sphinx
Remember the price is the amount that is the resale value. The price that it will sell for - if there is someone willing to pay this amount. It may sell straight away or however, can take some considerable time to sell if it will sell at all.

If you've wanted to sell to a jewellery dealer - then you will not get anywhere near this resale amount. Dealers will deduct 2/3rds or more of the price they want to buy it at. This will give them enough profit to make it worth their while. Because they have to build in the costs of their shop's property/rates/ website costs/promotions and not forgetting staff wages. If you are selling online then they will need to consider the postage costs and also the packaging. Selling a single item is more costly than many pieces because of the time facture of getting this piece ready for sale - cleaning and then listing. so do not be surprised if the dealer's offer is very low.

No markings on your costume jewellery - then look at the age of your piece. Make an estimate at what you know of its age. Then do a search of jewellery from that decade. Does your piece fit in with the style of that decade? If not try a decade before or after - continue until you find an estimate on how old your costume jewellery is. From this, it will be easier to make a search of the similar pieces of that era for an estimate of value.

As with all antiques and collectables they can go up and down in value depending on the fashion. It may be advisable that you just keep your jewellery safe for a few more years - until it either comes back in fashion or the price increases.

yellow and white bone china flower brooch
Yellow and white bone china brooch
 I am sorry but Jewels & finery do not give valuations. Nor do we buy jewellery via the internet or otherwise. we have our own sources of buying our jewellery and accessories for resale.

If you do a search and find that you have a considerable amount of valuable jewellery. Then I would suggest that you seek advice through a quality auction house local to you or one in London.              

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About Me

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Solihull, West Midlands, United Kingdom
I preserve the past. Researching family and local history. Finding about mine and other people's ancestors, is just one of my passions. I also love vintage costume jewellery made here in the UK. I write about my finds and like to research.