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Value of antique vs. re-creation

Papillion

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 11, 2012
Messages
55
In judging whether a reproduction vs. an antique is worth the extra price, what is the extra value in an antique ring? For instance, let's say you're looking at five-stone old cut bands created by a modern seller compared to an actual Victorian era antique using the same old cut stones. What is the worth of getting the antique? I'm talking in dollars, not just intrinsic value of having an antique.
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
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5,143
Hard to say, there are many factors at play when purchasing Antique jewellery.
The positive, sometimes it’s the workmanship, difficult and expensive to recreate. Sometimes it’s the cut of the gemstones, many love wonky old cuts and Rose cut diamonds. Sometimes people want to own something with history, something that may be a “one of a kind”. Sometimes it’s the hallmarks identifying it to a desirable region or maker.
The negatives - the setting can be worn, it can require rehabbing which can be expensive. Sometimes the gemstones are chipped or abraided due to age and wear. Sometimes gems have been replaced, this can negate the charm or intent of purchasing an antique piece. Sometimes resizing the piece to fit can result in disturbance to the pattern if engraved.
Generally speaking, most pre loved jewellery is sold for a combination of the value of components (precious metal weight, gemstone value) rarity and desirability. The last two factors being very difficult to quantify in $$$ terms. Certainly there is a premium associated to genuine Georgian jewellery because of its rarity.
A “standard” Victorian era 5 stone OEC Damond ring would be cheaper and easier to find than sourcing 5 suitable OEC and having a hand cast setting made.
If the Victorian era ring becomes “less standard” ie larger size good colour and clarity OEC diamonds in an ornate ring in excellent condition it becomes more expensive than a reproduction. Likewise a modern reproduction of a Victorian setting in a machine made setting becomes cheaper than the equivalent Victorian era ring.
 

Papillion

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 11, 2012
Messages
55
Hard to say, there are many factors at play when purchasing Antique jewellery.
The positive, sometimes it’s the workmanship, difficult and expensive to recreate. Sometimes it’s the cut of the gemstones, many love wonky old cuts and Rose cut diamonds. Sometimes people want to own something with history, something that may be a “one of a kind”. Sometimes it’s the hallmarks identifying it to a desirable region or maker.
The negatives - the setting can be worn, it can require rehabbing which can be expensive. Sometimes the gemstones are chipped or abraided due to age and wear. Sometimes gems have been replaced, this can negate the charm or intent of purchasing an antique piece. Sometimes resizing the piece to fit can result in disturbance to the pattern if engraved.
Generally speaking, most pre loved jewellery is sold for a combination of the value of components (precious metal weight, gemstone value) rarity and desirability. The last two factors being very difficult to quantify in $$$ terms. Certainly there is a premium associated to genuine Georgian jewellery because of its rarity.
A “standard” Victorian era 5 stone OEC Damond ring would be cheaper and easier to find than sourcing 5 suitable OEC and having a hand cast setting made.
If the Victorian era ring becomes “less standard” ie larger size good colour and clarity OEC diamonds in an ornate ring in excellent condition it becomes more expensive than a reproduction. Likewise a modern reproduction of a Victorian setting in a machine made setting becomes cheaper than the equivalent Victorian era ring.

Thank you for your informative reply! I see repro old mine cut five stone rings that are somewhat inexpensive, but finding a real antique one is proving to be a little difficult without buying from British vendors. They have some antique jewelry stores that are very well known and trustworthy that are on 1st dibs (Such as Berganza and Ferringdon's and Bentley-Skinner) and and that are supposed to be vetted and allow for returns, but I still feel very leery of buying from Great Britain for something fairly expensive and paying for customs fees and would rather buy something here in the U.S. And they are also very pricey! But the selection is very limited of what's left. Old mine cuts seem to be growing more scarce. Anyone know of a good U.S. vendor with a good selection?
 

CSpan

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 7, 2016
Messages
955
I feel like I always see a ton of them on IG. Lots of little vendors seem to have them. Depending on big you want. Moonstone just showed one the other days. She is US based. But if they are legitimately antiques I can't say.
 

LilAlex

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
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Mar 3, 2018
Messages
1,014
But if they are legitimately antiques I can't say.

Yes! The worst case, imo, is buying fake vintage/antique. That seems to be most of what I see on eBay and IG -- seller feigns ignorance of the provenance. "Art Deco-style..." The few times I have bought antique, it has been from a very reliable seller. And there have always been "issues" with condition/appearance that we felt were more charming than objectionable (fine line there, I know.)

I will gamble with the occasional loose stone from a nobody if there is a report and I can return it.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
196
If you don’t mind me asking, how would it be possible to tell if it is a fake vintage/antique? I recently purchased a Art Deco 5-stone OEC ring from a British antique seller that I found through IG, and I have absolutely no reason not to trust their judgement, but would love some pointers just to reassure myself since I’m not very experienced with antiques.
 

LilAlex

Brilliant_Rock
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I have absolutely no reason not to trust their judgement, but would love some pointers just to reassure myself since I’m not very experienced with antiques.

There is a law in consumer finance (not my field) that you can never make someone understand something when they have a financial interest in not understanding. Think: selling annuities, whole life insurance, expensive mutual funds, etc. This is how I view communicating with "Art Deco" sellers on eBay and IG. They are not likely to say, "Yeah, for what I paid for it and for what it looks like IRL, it's gotta be fake."

I don't think British shops are immune from this practice...

Anyone can and will call anything Art Deco. Maybe there is actual junk from the Art Deco era, too, but you can usually tell from the make and the patina. If it is solid and molded-looking with no delicacy, it is likely mass-produced in China or similar locale. If it's hideous and proportions are just "wrong" and the stones are mediocre, it would have been scrapped years ago. There is one eBay vendor who sells tens of thousands of Art Deco rings that are almost all identical. may even be on the list here. Pretty easy -- look at their current inventory and their five- or six-digit feedback score.

No one ever knows. You can't send them to GIA and get the "Art Deco" box checked and rest assured. A few makers authenticate but we do not play at that level. Vendors like Lang seem to draw a clear distinction between period Art Deco and contemporary Art Deco "style." They are rare; how many shops will use their in-house expertise to reduce the selling price of their merchandise?

I have only seriously considered things that would not be -- or would only barely be -- cost-effective to produce now. We only have a couple of "old" things and they are more Edwardian than Art Deco -- decent stones and obviously hand-made since faking all those platinum spider webs is not worth the return on investment.

In terms of pointers, others here have a lot more experience gambling with more suspect things and know a lot more than I do.
 

ForteKitty

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 7, 2004
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5,100
I've seen so-called antique experts call repros "authentic art deco" at the Miami Antique Show. I knew they were repros because another vendor had the identical item and they said they made tons of them. The good repros are so good there's really no way to tell.. they even fake the wear and aging on personalized engraved initials. Because of this, I just assume anything could be repro and pay what i feel a piece is worth. Just because something is antique doesn't mean it's better, it could be a piece of junk and falling apart.
 

Pinkmartini87

Brilliant_Rock
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There are no easy pointers one can impart in a few lines. If there were, there would not be so many repro pieces made and sold daily.

It takes a discerning eye (and sadly some of us perhaps even with trying may not ever master the ability) + decades of experience to begin to acquire some confidence in the business of authenticating true antique jewelry.

If it’s true antique pieces you are after, unless you are a seasoned antiques dealer/expert yourself, stick to true and true shops that only sell antiques or are reputable in disclosing antique-style reproductions (ie Lang’s), and pay the premium to get that piece of mind. There’s a reason why you pay more at shops like Lang’s: you are paying for their experience aka the experience most of us don’t have.

Otherwise, it’s always just a gamble and only you can decide how much you are willing to gamble.

I’ve only dabbled in antique jewelry for the last few years and I can humbly tell you I’m not much wiser than where I began.

I’ve been duped (have bought glass coated beads sold to me as pearls, dyed quartz sold to me as emerald, so on) and paid the price of my tuition (but nowhere done paying tuition I’m sure!), and me thinks that I can spot some reproductions at this point, but I’m not willing to gamble $$$ on my ability.

There are styles more often faked (for example, 3 or 5 stone Victorian bands, Gypsy rings, Victorian solitaire colored stone rings with halo of diamonds, engraved wedding bands) because the style is popular/back in demand and the workmanship and raw material needed to do so is not astronomical. So I’m especially wary of these popular styles whenever they come up for sale, and have seen some truly abysmal ones where I seriously doubt they were put together by a primate with thumbs, never mind being antiques.

But at the end of the day, sometimes playing the wheel of fortune (given the price is not prohibitive) does have its own thrill too...Everyone loves the fantasy of having scored a deal, nothing wrong with that! Sometimes I’ve wondered too myself if it’s better not to ask too many questions in fear of bursting the fantasy.

In summary, if it’s a piece you love aesthetically and didn’t break the bank, I would just enjoy it and not worry too much, because there is no way of authenticating most antique pieces (as well meaning as we on PS try to help each other anyway!) short of taking it to a seasoned expert, and many “experts” are baloney anyway (it’s like the blind leading the blind). :lol:
 
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MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
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There is a law in consumer finance (not my field) that you can never make someone understand something when they have a financial interest in not understanding. Think: selling annuities, whole life insurance, expensive mutual funds, etc. This is how I view communicating with "Art Deco" sellers on eBay and IG. They are not likely to say, "Yeah, for what I paid for it and for what it looks like IRL, it's gotta be fake."

I don't think British shops are immune from this practice...

Anyone can and will call anything Art Deco. Maybe there is actual junk from the Art Deco era, too, but you can usually tell from the make and the patina. If it is solid and molded-looking with no delicacy, it is likely mass-produced in China or similar locale. If it's hideous and proportions are just "wrong" and the stones are mediocre, it would have been scrapped years ago. There is one eBay vendor who sells tens of thousands of Art Deco rings that are almost all identical. may even be on the list here. Pretty easy -- look at their current inventory and their five- or six-digit feedback score.

No one ever knows. You can't send them to GIA and get the "Art Deco" box checked and rest assured. A few makers authenticate but we do not play at that level. Vendors like Lang seem to draw a clear distinction between period Art Deco and contemporary Art Deco "style." They are rare; how many shops will use their in-house expertise to reduce the selling price of their merchandise?

I have only seriously considered things that would not be -- or would only barely be -- cost-effective to produce now. We only have a couple of "old" things and they are more Edwardian than Art Deco -- decent stones and obviously hand-made since faking all those platinum spider webs is not worth the return on investment.

In terms of pointers, others here have a lot more experience gambling with more suspect things and know a lot more than I do.

These are great points! It seems so true that there is a lot of incentive to call something Art Deco and not a lot of incentive to reduce the price of merchandise. Before buying, I did try to look at a lot of photos and get a sense of make and patina, but perhaps many photos on IG etc. could be of repros but labeled as antique, so it’s hard to establish a solid baseline.

I had hoped that there was indeed something like a GIA analysis for period, but I guess those distinctions are truly more art than science.

In light of that, and to OP’s point, it is interesting to me that there does still seem to be some significant value plated on a real antique piece over the repro version, otherwise there would be no incentive to create fake antiques. I have no idea what the added percent value might be, but I guess one could look at the difference in average price between a clearly-advertised repro like the 5-stone old cut bands sold by a reputable business like JbG, and the average price of the same style band sold by Lang’s or similar.
I've seen so-called antique experts call repros "authentic art deco" at the Miami Antique Show. I knew they were repros because another vendor had the identical item and they said they made tons of them. The good repros are so good there's really no way to tell.. they even fake the wear and aging on personalized engraved initials. Because of this, I just assume anything could be repro and pay what i feel a piece is worth. Just because something is antique doesn't mean it's better, it could be a piece of junk and falling apart.

It’s surprising to me that at a centralized location like an antique show that any vendor could sell repros as antiques without shame! I would have thought it would be too easy for customers to notice that someone in the same building had an identical item. But I haven’t personally been to one and probably won’t have the opportunity in the foreseeable future.

I had no idea that there were repros that fake wear, aging, and initials. I guess those would be cheap ways to make something look old. It’s good advice to pay what the piece seems worth and assume it could very well be repro.
There are no easy pointers one can impart in a few lines. If there were, there would not be so many repro pieces made and sold daily.

It takes a discerning eye (and sadly some of us perhaps even with trying may not ever master the ability) + decades of experience to begin to acquire some confidence in the business of authenticating true antique jewelry.

If it’s true antique pieces you are after, unless you are a seasoned antiques dealer/expert yourself, stick to true and true shops that only sell antiques or are reputable in disclosing antique-style reproductions (ie Lang’s), and pay the premium to get that piece of mind. There’s a reason why you pay more at shops like Lang’s: you are paying for their experience aka the experience most of us don’t have.

Otherwise, it’s always just a gamble and only you can decide how much you are willing to gamble.

I’ve only dabbled in antique jewelry for the last few years and I can humbly tell you I’m not much wiser than where I began.

I’ve been duped (have bought glass coated beads sold to me as pearls, dyed quartz sold to me as emerald, so on) and paid the price of my tuition (but nowhere done paying tuition I’m sure!), and me thinks that I can spot some reproductions at this point, but I’m not willing to gamble $$$ on my ability.

There are styles more often faked (for example, 3 or 5 stone Victorian bands, Gypsy rings, Victorian solitaire colored stone rings with halo of diamonds, engraved wedding bands) because the style is popular/back in demand and the workmanship and raw material needed to do so is not astronomical. So I’m especially wary of these popular styles whenever they come up for sale, and have seen some truly abysmal ones where I seriously doubt they were put together by a primate with thumbs, never mind being antiques.

But at the end of the day, sometimes playing the wheel of fortune (given the price is not prohibitive) does have its own thrill too...Everyone loves the fantasy of having scored a deal, nothing wrong with that! Sometimes I’ve wondered too myself if it’s better not to ask too many questions in fear of bursting the fantasy.

In summary, if it’s a piece you love aesthetically and didn’t break the bank, I would just enjoy it and not worry too much, because there is no way of authenticating most antique pieces (as well meaning as we on PS try to help each other anyway!) short of taking it to a seasoned expert, and many “experts” are baloney anyway (it’s like the blind leading the blind). :lol:

This is so true. I’m sure my crash course in antique jewelry via Google Images and IG left me lifetimes short of confident authentication. I expect most of you on here have a much more discerning eye and are relative experts. Thank you for sharing your sense of how to make wise choices in this domain. It seems well-worth paying more for the additive lifetimes of experience behind antique shops like Langs. I am definitely not a gambler...just didn’t really realize I would be gambling.

I am completely guilty of falling in love with one of the popular styles that you mentioned was more often faked, probably because of the influence of all the beautiful photos of these rings on IG. The workmanship looked intricate and complex to me, but perhaps that’s because my opposable thumbs couldn’t imagine doing anything artistic. Maybe that is the first installment of my “tuition” — thanks to all of you for making sure I don’t pay too much more for future lessons! That part is definitely a case of the wise and seeing leading the blind.

I feel a little embarrassed now because I excitedly shared a few photos in the forums of the 5-stone since it is my first antique piece, and if it is indeed a repro I’m sure many people are laughing at this PS Rough Rock :oops: I hope someone will reach out to me if they think it’s a fake. In any case, I do still think it is pretty and will try to enjoy it!
 

ForteKitty

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
5,100
There’s a reason why you pay more at shops like Lang’s: you are paying for their experience aka the experience most of us don’t have.

Lang's isn't above being duped if the repro ring has changed several hands prior to reaching them. I saw a ring not long ago that certainly was repro, but it was listed as Edwardian on their site as well as their Instagram. A few weeks later, it was changed to "Edwardian-style" in their description... someone must have pointed it out to them. They also sell newly made antique-inspired jewelry.

It’s surprising to me that at a centralized location like an antique show that any vendor could sell repros as antiques without shame! I would have thought it would be too easy for customers to notice that someone in the same building had an identical item. But I haven’t personally been to one and probably won’t have the opportunity in the foreseeable future.

The vendor wasn't selling it as antique. A customer brought along this supposed "antiques expert", who examined it and proclaimed it to be authentic art deco and posted it on her Instagram. I was shocked because this was a well made deco-inspired piece but it definitely didn't have the wear and tear or a 100 year old piece, plus I had seen others just like it. How this supposed expert determined it was authentic, i have no clue. It looked new. I just so happened to have seen the other booth so I knew for sure it was repro. Those shows are massive and it takes days to look at every vendor, but to me, it feels like half the stuff there are repros. Some are so poorly made it's immediately clear, some are not.
 
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ForteKitty

Ideal_Rock
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I feel a little embarrassed now because I excitedly shared a few photos in the forums of the 5-stone since it is my first antique piece, and if it is indeed a repro I’m sure many people are laughing at this PS Rough Rock :oops: I hope someone will reach out to me if they think it’s a fake. In any case, I do still think it is pretty and will try to enjoy it!

Please don't feel that way, nobody cares whether it's repro or not, as long as you love it! I spent a very long time searching for an antique mounting for my oec, but I realized that most of them are in terrible shape that need a lot of work. Give me a well made reproduction piece any day! It just has to look good, I don't care if it's old and haunted or not.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
196
Please don't feel that way, nobody cares whether it's repro or not, as long as you love it! I spent a very long time searching for an antique mounting for my oec, but I realized that most of them are in terrible shape that need a lot of work. Give me a well made reproduction piece any day! It just has to look good, I don't care if it's old and haunted or not.

Thank you for the support! I do still love it and overall it seems solid and well made, so if it’s repro then kudos to whoever managed to infuse it with the right intricate, haunted, antique-y vibe for my blind eyes! I’ll share a couple photos since you guys have been so sweet and helpful to this noob. 2ADACA77-BCD8-4A76-B8DE-F6C5A340DCE2.jpeg

I hope you find the perfect mounting for your special OEC!
 

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ForteKitty

Ideal_Rock
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Thank you for the support! I do still love it and overall it seems solid and well made, so if it’s repro then kudos to whoever managed to infuse it with the right intricate, haunted, antique-y vibe for my blind eyes! I’ll share a couple photos since you guys have been so sweet and helpful to this noob. 2ADACA77-BCD8-4A76-B8DE-F6C5A340DCE2.jpeg

I hope you find the perfect mounting for your special OEC!

Are there any hallmarks in your ring? any type of stamps or markings at all?
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
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Yes! Well I think so...there was something stamped inside the band that wasn’t very easy to read. But unfortunately the ring is at currently the jeweller‘s for resizing - won’t have it until next week. Can I get back to you on that? I’d be really curious about what you thought.
 

Pinkmartini87

Brilliant_Rock
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Messages
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Lang's isn't above being duped if the repro ring has changed several hands prior to reaching them. I saw a ring not long ago that certainly was repro, but it was listed as Edwardian on their site as well as their Instagram. A few weeks later, it was changed to "Edwardian-style" in their description... someone must have pointed it out to them. They also sell newly made antique-inspired jewelry.

Great point @ForteKitty. Further illustrates the point that even the best of us (with decades of experience) can still be befuddled so there is really no simple foolproof way to spot reproductions.

So we just do our best to educate ourselves and gain experience, try to stick to trusted vendors, be mindful of our budgets, and most of all, enjoy the beauty of our jewelry!
 

Pinkmartini87

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@MiniMinerva Gorgeous ring! Its beauty is what matters most.

My two cents (take it for what it’s worth!): I suspect the ring has at the least been retipped because the prongs look awfully fresh and uniform for what is presumably a Victorian piece.

Hallmarks can be lost if the ring was resized before.

Victorians often did silver tipped prongs, so if the prongs are platinum then it’s a giveaway that it’s likely not original.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
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@MiniMinerva Gorgeous ring! Its beauty is what matters most.

My two cents (take it for what it’s worth!): I suspect the ring has at the least been retipped because the prongs look awfully fresh and uniform for what is presumably a Victorian piece.

Hallmarks can be lost if the ring was resized before.

Victorians often did silver tipped prongs, so if the prongs are platinum then it’s a giveaway that it’s likely not original.

Aww, thank you @Pinkmartini87!

You are absolutely right. The vendor said that the prongs were tested as platinum. The ring wasn’t marketed as Victorian, but Art Deco — the vendor did say that the platinum is what dated the piece to Art Deco. I am still getting to know the differences between styles, so apologies if this is a naive question: is this style more Victorian and not Art Deco? I feel like most Art Deco styles are more linear and geometric and this ring looks more organic.

Also, I think that these 5-stone rings are often made with OMCs, but the vendor said that these are OECs. Is that also a clue to age?

I hope the existing mark on the inside of the band wasn’t lost during my request for resizing. Hopefully not, since I’m sizing up. I’ll know early next week when the ring is back.

The vendor does have a return policy, so if there is a flagrant problem with the piece I could return it, but since I already requested resizing (done through the vendor’s jeweller) I would feel really badly about that. And I do still think it is beautiful. B478A571-7BBD-4EA1-8BA4-499A70736026.jpeg
 

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ForteKitty

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@ForteKitty I was able to capture a terrible image from the vendor’s video showing a partial marking, but I expect it isn’t clear enough to be identifiable... C3C4AB26-C73E-459A-A9F5-42D7AE7492DB.png

I can't tell at all. It is a well made ring though and proportionally very pleasing. Did you pay a reasonable price or was there an "antique" premium?
 

MiniMinerva

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I can't tell at all. It is a well made ring though and proportionally very pleasing. Did you pay a reasonable price or was there an "antique" premium?

Thank you! I liked its proportions too. There was definitely an ”antique” premium ~30-35% based on known repros at this tcw, but also the vendor says these are OECs. Most of the 5-stones of this type I’ve seen are OMCs, so maybe that was part of the premium?

Yeah, sorry about the markings. I’ll send photos of the interior of the band as soon as I have them (probably early next week).
 

JPie

Ideal_Rock
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Thank you! I liked its proportions too. There was definitely an ”antique” premium ~30-35% based on known repros at this tcw, but also the vendor says these are OECs. Most of the 5-stones of this type I’ve seen are OMCs, so maybe that was part of the premium?

Yeah, sorry about the markings. I’ll send photos of the interior of the band as soon as I have them (probably early next week).

I think the seller is mistaken. Those look like OMCs.
1614899057857.jpeg
 

Pinkmartini87

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Aww, thank you @Pinkmartini87!

You are absolutely right. The vendor said that the prongs were tested as platinum. The ring wasn’t marketed as Victorian, but Art Deco — the vendor did say that the platinum is what dated the piece to Art Deco. I am still getting to know the differences between styles, so apologies if this is a naive question: is this style more Victorian and not Art Deco? I feel like most Art Deco styles are more linear and geometric and this ring looks more organic.

Also, I think that these 5-stone rings are often made with OMCs, but the vendor said that these are OECs. Is that also a clue to age?

I hope the existing mark on the inside of the band wasn’t lost during my request for resizing. Hopefully not, since I’m sizing up. I’ll know early next week when the ring is back.

The vendor does have a return policy, so if there is a flagrant problem with the piece I could return it, but since I already requested resizing (done through the vendor’s jeweller) I would feel really badly about that. And I do still think it is beautiful. B478A571-7BBD-4EA1-8BA4-499A70736026.jpeg

To me this ring style emulates Victorian more than Art Deco 5 stone rings. Platinum does not date for Art Deco although used more during the Art Deco era, but in this style of ring typically it’s silver topped if true to Victorian era (same for Georgian pieces although this piece definitely does not look Georgian). I’ve seen some Victorian pieces with 18k white gold also. But unusual to have platinum + yellow gold for true Victorian. Art Deco 3-5 stone bands tend to be all platinum or 18k white and yellow gold, although I have seen some with platinum and yellow gold. Edwardian jewelry could be combo platinum and yellow gold.

OMC more common in Victorian although OEC does not exclude Victorian. But the diamonds look like OMC to me in your photo. Both can be found in Art Deco pieces.

Hallmark may be key here. Any way you can provide a better photo of it and we can do our best to look? Since there are hallmarks, it’s probably our best clue (assuming the hallmarks are not faked, which I’ve also seen!)

My hunch: unless this is truly a transitional piece somehow caught between styles/eras, this doesn’t look true Art Deco (at least in style) or Victorian (at least in materials). Maybe an Edwardian piece, but will definitely need the correct hallmarks to help substantiate this. If repro, could be as early as the retro era given combo of metals, or later.

I think if you like the look of it (and its certainly very pretty!), and if price was fair, then perhaps worth holding on to, since many true antique 5 stone Victorian or Art Deco pieces will need some TLC (read: extra $$$ for rehabbing).

But if it might bother you that there’s a chance this may not be a completely original ring, then best to return.
 
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Papillion

Rough_Rock
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Dec 11, 2012
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55
Thank you! I liked its proportions too. There was definitely an ”antique” premium ~30-35% based on known repros at this tcw, but also the vendor says these are OECs. Most of the 5-stones of this type I’ve seen are OMCs, so maybe that was part of the premium?

Yeah, sorry about the markings. I’ll send photos of the interior of the band as soon as I have them (probably early next week).

It's a beautiful five stone. In my own search for a five stone I have now looked at tons of rings online, and I have indeed seen a few five stones listed as art deco having old European cuts. I don't see why this popular ring style couldn't have continued into the art deco era, although it did seem to lessen in popularity. Interesting to hear that the beautiful hand carved scroll work on those listed as Victorian could possibly be faked. If it can be done so easily today, why aren't more ring makers offering those lovely designs in their work?
 

Pinkmartini87

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It's a beautiful five stone. In my own search for a five stone I have now looked at tons of rings online, and I have indeed seen a few five stones listed as art deco having old European cuts. I don't see why this popular ring style couldn't have continued into the art deco era, although it did seem to lessen in popularity. Interesting to hear that the beautiful hand carved scroll work on those listed as Victorian could possibly be faked. If it can be done so easily today, why aren't more ring makers offering those lovely designs in their work?

I think that’s the great difficulty in dating since there’s usually always some overlap.

I suppose to answer your question, just because it can be done (ie the scrollwork, etc) doesn’t mean it’s easy/not time consuming. People who make repro pieces may have diff motivations. If it’s to emulate the beauty of prior pieces, then certainly they may aim to do a good job and get all the detailing as close to original. But if it’s to turn a quick buck, then maybe it’s just whatever is “good enough” to pass and make a sale and they may not be motivated to try to duplicate all the intricate scrollwork, etc.

Unfortunately in the former case these well designed repro pieces can make the rounds and exchange many sets of hands and come to be believed to be “real antiques” at some point. IMHO these are the real danger pieces to watch out for for folks who want only true antiques. Lots of cheap modern repros are much easier to spot than these well done repros.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
196
I think the seller is mistaken. Those look like OMCs.
1614899057857.jpeg

Those are OMCs, not OECs.

Oh...thank you for correcting me! I had wondered about this too and tried to ask the seller about this but they didn’t address it. I guess while I’m at it I should ask whether the other specs seem accurate: colour was listed as G-H, clarity VS-SI. The seller says they don‘t usually send out for a certificate on diamond jewellery since they aren’t heated/enhanced.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
196
To me this ring style emulates Victorian more than Art Deco 5 stone rings. Platinum does not date for Art Deco although used more during the Art Deco era, but in this style of ring typically it’s silver topped if true to Victorian era (same for Georgian pieces although this piece definitely does not look Georgian). I’ve seen some Victorian pieces with 18k white gold also. But unusual to have platinum + yellow gold for true Victorian. Art Deco 3-5 stone bands tend to be all platinum or 18k white and yellow gold, although I have seen some with platinum and yellow gold. Edwardian jewelry could be combo platinum and yellow gold.

OMC more common in Victorian although OEC does not exclude Victorian. But the diamonds look like OMC to me in your photo. Both can be found in Art Deco pieces.

Hallmark may be key here. Any way you can provide a better photo of it and we can do our best to look? Since there are hallmarks, it’s probably our best clue (assuming the hallmarks are not faked, which I’ve also seen!)

My hunch: unless this is truly a transitional piece somehow caught between styles/eras, this doesn’t look true Art Deco (at least in style) or Victorian (at least in materials). Maybe an Edwardian piece, but will definitely need the correct hallmarks to help substantiate this. If repro, could be as early as the retro era given combo of metals, or later.

I think if you like the look of it (and its certainly very pretty!), and if price was fair, then perhaps worth holding on to, since many true antique 5 stone Victorian or Art Deco pieces will need some TLC (read: extra $$$ for rehabbing).

But if it might bother you that there’s a chance this may not be a completely original ring, then best to return.

Thank you for sharing your knowledge of the details of metalwork combinations and stone use during those eras! I really appreciate your informed opinion on this piece. I had no idea what to call it, but it did strike me as not typical Art Deco.

The ring is currently at the jeweller’s for the resizing, but will return to the seller before he sends it to me. I‘ve asked the seller to send me a detailed photo of the markings on the interior of the ring as soon as it returns (early next week). Hopefully clues can be found therein.

This ring was my first foray into antique jewelry. I usually buy contemporary pieces but I thought it might be fun to expand my repertoire over time. I certainly wasn’t looking for a project to fix up so perhaps it ends up being more suitable for me than a true antique that needs $rehab$! I don’t think I’d be terribly bothered if it is repro, so my only hesitation would be the “premium” for antique if it isn’t indeed antique.
 

JPie

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 12, 2018
Messages
3,796
Oh...thank you for correcting me! I had wondered about this too and tried to ask the seller about this but they didn’t address it. I guess while I’m at it I should ask whether the other specs seem accurate: colour was listed as G-H, clarity VS-SI. The seller says they don‘t usually send out for a certificate on diamond jewellery since they aren’t heated/enhanced.

Happy to help! When I bought my first antique ring, I couldn’t tell the difference between OECs and OMCs.

A lot of antique diamond jewelry doesn’t get graded unless it’s got a really big diamond in it. Grading diamonds require them to be unset, so it doesn’t make sense for dealers to absorb that cost plus the report unless it will help them sell the piece for more. It’s the same reason why modern jewelry doesn’t come with GIA reports for diamond melee. The grading can cost more than the diamond! When it comes to antiques, you’re really relying on the expertise and honesty of the dealer in assessing and describing the diamonds accurately.

If the ring is being resized, there’s a possibility that you’ll lose the hallmarks. It depends on where they’re placed, how much they’re sizing it, and whether the bench has any regard for preserving hallmarks on an antique.
 

MiniMinerva

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
196
Happy to help! When I bought my first antique ring, I couldn’t tell the difference between OECs and OMCs.

A lot of antique diamond jewelry doesn’t get graded unless it’s got a really big diamond in it. Grading diamonds require them to be unset, so it doesn’t make sense for dealers to absorb that cost plus the report unless it will help them sell the piece for more. It’s the same reason why modern jewelry doesn’t come with GIA reports for diamond melee. The grading can cost more than the diamond! When it comes to antiques, you’re really relying on the expertise and honesty of the dealer in assessing and describing the diamonds accurately.

If the ring is being resized, there’s a possibility that you’ll lose the hallmarks. It depends on where they’re placed, how much they’re sizing it, and whether the bench has any regard for preserving hallmarks on an antique.
Makes sense! Thank you. I should be a little embarrassed about the OECs because I’ve been trying to learn a lot about those lately (different project). I think I assumed these were the less-precise version of OECs since they aren‘t as cushiony as the stereotypical OMCs, but I suppose these stones really aren’t round so I should have known :lol:

I‘m having one size added to the ring, so hopefully there won’t be any hallmarks removed by cutting, though polishing may have an impact. The seller assured me that they have worked with this jeweller many times on antique items and that there was no risk to the ring. Hopefully there will be something left...I’ll keep you posted.
 
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