Patina on Grandmothers Jewellery

patina on grandma

As a young girl, I loved to peer into my Grandmother’s jewellery box. The style and feel of those pieces were always a joy to me.

I developed a love of gems and jewellery from childhood, and the new bright pieces in the jewellery stores never quite measured up to my Grandma’s pieces.
Each antique piece had a beautiful patina that told of many years of love and enjoyment. That very patina adds to the joy and value of antique jewellery.

patina on Grandmothers jewelleryWhat is patina on antique jewellery?

Patina is change that occurs through wear and time. When a piece of jewellery is worn over a long period of time, it develops very small (hopefully) marks on the metal, and some metals actually change colour. To many antique jewellery collectors this patina is part of the charm of the piece, it tells of another life the jewellery had. The patina can be seen as a different glow rather than the bright and brassy look on new jewellery. This is not to be mistaken with dirty or damaged jewellery.
Care should be taken in cleaning your antique jewellery item so as not to create damage or lose the patina.

Many jewellers will offer to clean your antique item for you. Please ask them how they will clean it. Most have ultrasonic cleaners that can damage some gemstones that may be in your treasured piece.  Imagine taking your valuable emerald ring to be cleaned at the jeweller’s, only to pick it up and find the stone has been damaged (and may now be worthless). That would be heartbreaking!
Some people clean their jewellery with a very soft brush and detergent, others risk the untrasonic cleaner. When I have a gold or silver item for cleaning, and it has no stones or organic gems in it, I use aluminium with washing soda and hot water. It has the reaction of pulling dirt off the piece without damaging it. Not all stones can go into this either, and I’ll tell you that I’ve ruined pearls in a brooch doing this. I’ve learned that lesson the hard way.

An antique item of jewellery has survived many years, and deserves to be treated with the care that a precious item deserves.

About Jeanette

A lover of Nature, gems and antiques for many years.  I am a collector enjoying sharing both my collected pieces and my knowledge of them. I studied gemmology to better understand the stones used in the jewellery I owned, and then moved on to new owners. With knowledge of both gemstones and natural medicine, I researched for, and wrote the book “The Magic Of Minerals In Crystal Healing”. A book that looks at the mineral make up of the gems/crystals, and the health giving properties of those minerals.
I have a new shop Millies Antique and Vintage Jewellery, for antique, vintage, and hand made jewellery. You’ll find it here Millies Antique and Vintage Jewellery