We just posted an article from Stringing magazine that gives more details about how the editors modified vintage jewelry to create new pieces for the fall issue:
http://www.stringingmagazine.com/extras/Revisiting_the_Classics.pdf (You'll need the free Adobe Acrobat reader to view it.)
Website: www.michellemach.comBlog: www.michellemach.com/blog/
That's a neat article. I never thought about using a button clasp with chain-what a good idea! I have several pieces of costume jewelry from my grandmothers that could lend themselves to treatment like that. Thanks!
Thanks for the article, I will have to take more time with it later.
Having said that, what do you use to decide if the piece is worth purchasing to use? I don't know anything about old/vintage jewelry so I am thinking I would buy something, even if it is cheap. Then find out that it isn't even worth the $2 I paid for it.
Or is it like everything else, if you like it, buy it and use it?
Have a great day!
I think you generally can't go wrong with buying what you like, especially if the price is good.
Some people put a cap on what they will spend for a certain item--no more than $5 dollars for pin, for example. I do that to a degree. I think especially if you're going to cut things apart or alter them, you probably don't want to spend a lot of money. I personally would try to spend no more than I would normally spend on one component, preferably less.
Of course, that is just theory.
What usually happens is that I fall in love with something and all my reasonable plans fall apart. Case in point: I just had an assignment to make a necklace with a set budget and I spent of third of my budget on a handmade pendant I fell in love with! I made it work--I used a very simple clasp and some inexpensive gemstones, but probably was not the most sensible decision.
I'll buy it if I like it and go on. It matters not what it cost or what it is "worth" if I like it and intend to use it. I do a lot of scavanging myself.
I yam wut I yam and dats all wut I yam. ~Popeye~
Dragonfly Jewelry Designs - ArtFire Artisan Studio
I may have to take a look at some of those older pieces then. Hubby loves to go to flea markets so I may have to "talk" him into a couple this weekend.
I guess I was on the right track. I just don't know that I have the talent to rework something. I guess I won't know until I try...
This sounds similar to the "grandmother's pearls" post. You wouldn't want to buy it, cut it apart and then find out it was from Lalique (and you never know what people will get rid of at garage sales & flea markets). Depending on the item, I try not to alter it too much, so that it may be able to keep its original purpose, like using a pin as a removable pendant. That doesn't always work, but it sometimes crosses my mind to wonder if I should take a piece apart even if I know it's in really bad shape the way it is.
I love this thread. You're validating a decision I made today. When I was out and about, I was about to pass one of the local thrift stores and decided spur of the moment to stop in. They didn't have much in the way of vintage jewelry and what they did have was obviously plastic or acrylic. However, there was one necklace that was in my opinion just hideous - light pink and bright yellow. The first time I saw it, I thought "UCK" and moved on and made the rounds through the rest of the store to end up back at the little jewelry counter. I looked at that necklace again and took it off the display. And I mean that I looked at it, I took it apart in my mind and looked at the individual components instead of thinking "what've I got at home to go with this?" The beads are all glass, some of the pink might even be quartz. While I may not ever use the yellow beads, I definitely will use the pink beads and the silver-toned toggle clasp. And for $2 (part of which will help the local poor and homeless folks), I think I done good.
I wish we had a real flea market out here. Our swapmeets aren't like the mid-west or east coast flea markets where you can find a good deal on antiques and such. But maybe I'll hit some of the other local thrift shops. What other hints/tips do you all have?
Some of the vintage parts in the artcile look very familiar to me. I have a pair of carved bone earrings, but smaller and with studs. And many, many rhinestone brooches from my two grandmothers. My mother also handed me a big bunch of czech glass and semiprecious stone necklaces from my grandmother and said that I can probably use them for my jewelry. But I think I just restring them (the thread seems to be brittle in some pieces), because I can remember my grandma wearing them. Plus I like them as they are and I could never sell them.
Flea markets seem to be a good address for vintage pieces, because they are not overpriced (in most cases). But I made the experience that it has to be the "right kind" of flea market. There are some where only junk is sold. Or some where you have to go to early in the morning. I know a big one here and you have to start at 4 a.m. to get the good pieces.
I lucked out and received a large amount of vintage czech pieces from my family...a few I have from thrift stores and garage sales and such. I also have several vintage jewelry price guides with color pictures, that way if I find anything, I can look it up before I decide what to do with it. The books also help if you want to repair a piece and are great for inspiration.
On a side note, I am very happy with Stringing...its the only magazine I subscribe to and I have been thrilled with the vintage/brass/mixed metal pieces. Keep up the great work!
Rainy Pacific Northwest
Dawn - I have to say that I bought some bright yellow faceted cat's eye ( 6 or 8mm round ) simple because I thought they were pretty. I strung them with clear 4mm bicone. It is the cutest little thing. I need to get some pictures made and get them on artfire.
You might string a few and see what you think. You might be surprised. Perfect for a younger girl that is not ready for grown up jewelry ( in my mind I am thinking about 10-12 years old )
Congratulations! I am just positive I will be that person that destroys a $5000 strand of pearls to restring and sell for $25...oh well.
Hubby was asking what we were doing this weekend...I think I just found the answer. Flea Markets. Although he loves them more than me.