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Antique, estate & vintage jewellery explained

Antique, estate & vintage jewellery explained

Regardless of whether you possess items holding strong sentiments secretly stored as mementos, pieces inherited sitting in a dusty box or other you have gathered through time, you might be richer than you think. You’ve likely heard lexicons such as antique, estate and vintage connected to gems, yet how do you categorize your items within the right type?
In this article, we will explain the differences between the three aforementioned for a clearer comprehension on your end.


Any jewellery item that is beyond a century old is deemed as antique. If you are lucky enough to carry on tradition like certain families do, passing on items from generation to generation can be very rewarding at the end.
Antique gems will regularly fall inside a specific production period, notably, Georgian, Edwardian or Late Victorian. During these eras, pieces were handcrafted by designers rather than assembled at large quantity.
Generally discernible by a craftsman's symbol, antiques bear hallmarks which certify quality. Such items are regularly in demand and even considered for a few, collectable. Imperfections in terms of physical attribution actually amplify the item’s organic attractiveness.
Foreign antiques can likewise convey more prominent worth than those from Britain – Can you imagine how much Indian rubies from the colonial period or items preserved from pro-American independence days could be sold for in today’s market?
Depending on the rarity of your piece, a connoisseur could easily spot your treasure and with the help of a dedicated assessor, you could be walking out with a few hundred if not thousand pounds.

Estate pieces

Estate is often used as a synonym for pretty much any pre-owned jewellery. Merchants will in general set the limit of use to the last thirty years to set it apart from antique and vintage items.
As an example scenario, if someone kept their engagement ring or wedding band 10 years after divorcing, both pieces have somewhat aged but still hold value in the market and pawnbrokers would label them as ‘estate’. 
The value is dictated by the gem maker, as well as the type of material and brilliants used during its craft. It could likewise be decided by who actually owned the piece and their story, social or cultural impact.


The word 'vintage' is quite vague nowadays – Anything from songs, apparel or even automobile could be easily categorized as ‘vintage’. Nonetheless, for an item to be deemed as 'vintage', the latter must be at least 2 to 3 decades old and is generally part of a large-scale fabrication line.
In any case, its value is certainly not knocked down. Consider your grandma's wedding band from the 1950s. Without a doubt has huge set significant gemstones, for example, sapphire or emerald. It is probably going to be composed of solid yellow gold, not to mention the possibility of precious stones built-in such as ruby or alexandrite. Okay, it might not have a cool or modern look for millennials, regardless of anyone’s personal taste, it hold strong esteem. Items classified as 'vintage' can go from anywhere in the range between £125 and £45,000.
There are, of course, many fashion jewellery retailers that will oppose the idea of wearing old pieces with the intention to sell what is considered “trendy”. However, what most will never admit is the high-demand from collectors and the undying market that give such pieces a reviving purpose. This being said, it is in our best interest to remind you know that our assessors here at Fast Credit UK are ready to guide you through the valuation stage, 7 days a week till late hours.