When it comes to sparkly things, I am a bit of a magpie. I love jewellery, whether it be the costume and paste variety, or the real thing. But one thing unites all my favourite pieces of jewellery – it is vintage and antique pieces that I love the most. I love the idea that something so beautiful may also have a provenance, a story behind it, that it may have been super special to the person who first owned it. I wear my nan’s gold and diamond engagement ring every single day, knowing that it replaced a ration era thin band of gold and so was much loved and cherished, a symbol of times that were changing and improving. Only vintage and antique jewellery can hold stories like this.
The Real Thing
Finding really unusual and beautiful antique gemstone and precious metal pieces in perfect condition can be quite difficult, so it is best to consult an expert. Where else to head except Hatton Garden, the jewellery capital in the capital. Berganza is a good port of call, specialising in antique and vintage jewellery, including engagement rings that have now become super popular for those who want something that is a little different to modern designs. Berganza is the place to go if you have a reasonable budget and you want to get that unforgettable, show-stopping piece.
Costume and paste jewellery
If your budget does not stretch to the real thing, you can find some really interesting pieces of costume and paste vintage jewellery without breaking the bank. Vintage stores and Antique fairs can have rich pickings, but you can also find great pieces at jumble sales, charity shops and car boot sales. I wore a set of Austrian crystals on my wedding day that were from the 1960s and just sparkled so brightly with my dress. Names to look out for include Trifari, early Butler and Wilson, Monet (some really brilliant 1980s classics out there) and Lisner. But if you love it, and the price is right, you can pick up something that will become really special to you.
That brooch in that last picture cost a grand total of 95p. It is definitely worth looking around – you may just find a lovely bargain.