Summer is all about antiquing and checking out flea markets–but I was in over my head with the added summer heat. I checked out the flea market at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds, in Nashville. After enduring 95 degree haziness, lots of walking, lots of sweating, I spotted a beautiful antique brooch. The vendor was from Florida and had an amazing assortment of antique and vintage fine jewelry. Luckily his tables were extremely crowded, because when it was finally my turn to ask about the pin, he knocked $100 off of the pricetag!
My knowledge about jewelry led me to believe I got a really good deal, but to make sure I brought it to be thoroughly cleaned and checked out by a local antique jewelry shop. Turns out the brooch is circa 1890 and used to have a watch attached. It also has a folding bail that folds outward so a chain could be strung through, turning it into a necklace. Antique jewelry was often very versatile and came as 3-in-1, or 2-in-1.
A concern of mine before purchasing the brooch was the evident oxidizing of the gold. It almost looked dirty or tarnished. At first I was questioning the hallmark of 14k because I thought real gold never tarnishes. However, the antique jeweler informed me that because of its age, it had oxidized and most of it was removed after the brooch received a deep cleaning. If the brooch were 10k rather than 14k, the entire piece would have been blackened from oxidization.
Some interesting knowledge to pass on to my readers!