Important Considerations for the Care of Estate Jewellery
This blog post was written by Cynthia Findlay Antiques.
Buying and wearing vintage jewelry is an ideal way to add some character to your wardrobe and stand out from the pack. But although vintage pieces are often stunning, their age and condition can often mean challenges for owners. If you have vintage jewelry in your collection, you need to take extra care in order to maintain your pieces’ luster and not have your items get damaged. Improper storage, cleaning and maintenance can lead to jewelry that is damaged or tarnished.
You’ll want to be very careful when handling vintage jewelry. Along with applying common sense, here are some other considerations when caring for your vintage pieces.
Proper storage is critical to keeping your jewelry safe. You need to be thoughtful when considering how you will store your estate jewellery. For example, items made from higher karat gold are more likely to become dented than those made from lower karat gold. This is because gold is soft and a higher karat means that the item is made from a higher amount of pure gold.
Be sensitive to temperature changes. Changes in temperature can greatly affect the condition of vintage jewelry. For example, a sudden increase or decrease in temperature in Art Deco rings can cause the glue to stop working and gems to fall out.
Keep your jewels dry. Along with temperature changes, excess moisture might be the biggest problem that causes major damage to costume jewelry. Moisture can lead to pitting of precious metals, where localized corrosion leads to small, rust-like holes. With rhinestone pieces, moisture can also cause foil backings on jewelry to come off. While precious gems set in gold or platinum are never glued, it’s still a good idea to keep them dry.