My Necklace Is Bone, Not Ivory!

Hello Bling Lovers,  I am so grateful to the Jewel Collect members who took their time and helped me identify the material used in my carved vintage necklace. I know it is bone and not ivory. There are no ivory beads in it. My Mom was misled by the store owners who sold her the necklace. It makes me want to be extremely careful in my descriptions when I sell at Bernies Vintage.  

One JC member actually has a very informative article about ivory at her web store. I have asked her for permission to link to the article. If she will allow me to do so, you will be able to shop at a great place.

I am continuing to research and explore how to identify, care for and repair all types of vintage jewelry and vintage silver. Remember, if you do not know how to clean something, stop!  Wait, think about your goal. Are you trying to make the item more attractive to a buyer?  Buyers sometimes prefer the item wiped down but with the patina remaining. Is the item glued?  Do you have rhinestones with foiled backs?  Tomorrow I will talk about cleaning vintage flatware.  I have some beautiful sterling Gorham Fairfax sterling flatware. I am in the middle of cleaning it. I want to sell it and want it to look good but not dull.  Talk to you then. Bernie

Posted in Costume Jewelry, Vintage Bone Jewelry, Vintage Ivory Jewelry, Vintage Jewelry, Vintage Silver | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Ivory or Bone; How Do We Tell The Difference?

Hello Bling Lovers!  I have been in Hawaii and taking my time to remodel our condo and snorkeling.  I am back and loving my jewelry. I don’t know about you but old jewelry and old pretties just make me happy. I found a carved necklace my Mom had. She bought it from an antique store. It has carved elephants with some brass beads and is labeled as bone and ivory. Hmmm. What does that mean? Are the beads a mixture of both? Take a look….. 

I have  a close up also.  The experts who belong to Jewel Collect have given me information to use to identify ivory. I think at least part of the necklace is made using ivory beads.  See the close-up…. 

I want to share my new-found information about identifying ivory.  I am told one distinction between bone and ivory is bone has dried blood vessels running through it, but  ivory does not. These vessels are often visible under a loupe.   

Another member of JC (Jewel Collect) told me ivory often has a satiny shimmer to it. You can see this best by holding the piece to light and look at it closely. You should almost see it shimmer as you move it.  And you will see lines parallel to each other and need to look for crosshatching.  You should see clear vertical and horizontal lines all evenly spaced. If you see the crosshatching you should have ivory.  
I have this piece and some other items because Mom bought them as antiques. New Ivory is illegal to buy. I would not want to buy it, in any case. I am told the older pre-ban ivory has  light golden patina.  
I really thank the JC members. This information is from them. I am only passing it along. I am also sending this post and pictures to the group. I do hope they can verify what, I think. I am still very green at this part of loving jewelry. I want to find out what I have and to know enough so went it goes to berniesvintage I have it right. See you soon. I love jewelry. Hope you do too. Bernie 



Posted in Vintage Bone Jewelry, Vintage Ivory Jewelry, Vintage Jewelry | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Answering Question About Cleaning Silver Mesh Purses

Hello Bling Lovers,

Thanks for the question. If you have a mesh purse with leather do NOT dip the purse. Leather can not be dipped in TarnX.   Sorry, you can use silver paste and a soft tooth brush on the mesh.  But the leather can not withstand the chemicals. I would love to see your purse. Bernie bernies

Posted in Evening Purses, Vintage Silver | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Jewelry Books – Researching Value and Identity of Your Jewels

Hello Bling Lovers!

I continue to read and read. I visit  other jewelry collector and seller’s sites. I have been on Amazon looking for books to help me understand my Bling aka Vintage Jewelry. I am so confused, but I know I am also gaining knowledge every day. There is so much information available on the web it is difficult to sort it out.

Wouldn’t you know it my Mom, even after she is gone, helped me again. She collected jewelry identification books. Most of her books are likely collectible themselves. But one book was written in 2005. Mom must have bought it just before she died. She and I were talking about selling some of her/our huge collection. I had a collection too but my jewels just don’t compare with Mom’s.  The 2005 book is 20th Century Costume Jewelry 1900-1980 by Ronna Lee Aikins. It has beautiful pictures. I like the pictures of the jewelry from the 60s and 70s. I didn’t really collect this type of jewelry. I bought and wore it.  I do have quite a lot of, what I call, 60s & 70s junk jewelry. Fun to see this stuff listed and valued.

Ok, let’s talk value. The darn books are out of date almost as soon as you get them home.  They a great identification resource. They are also a great tway o learn jewelry trends and fashion of a specific era. Value, well the way I look at it, they are a help. I look at the values in the books and then I go shopping. I look at Etsy, Ruby Lane and Ebay’s sold or buy it now pieces. I compare and decide. This is not brain surgery. At least,  that is what I tell myself. If I get it wrong there is no real damage.  It will not sale but soooo. Right now I think I have over priced a stunning black and smoke  rhinestone necklace

I am told it is a Juliana, DeLizza & Elster piece. It really is gorgeous. But I don’t know what I was thinking when I priced it. So, I will change the price. There you have it. You can change your mind.  Of course, I want to be right on, but, fellow bling lovers, the stores all have different prices and the books vary also.

So don’t be too scared to get started and don’t be too stubborn to change the prices. Bernie 

Posted in Costume Jewelry, Ebay, Etsy, Juliana Costume Jewelry, Marketing Collectibles, Selling Vintage Jewelry, Uncategorized, Vintage Collectibles, Vintage Rhinestone Jewelry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Selling – When will it happen?

Hello Bling Lovers!

The holidays are over. It is time to sell jewels. And, I ask, just how can I sell my collectibles, especially vintage jewelry. I must say this endeavor is daunting. There is so much to learn about jewels.  Today, let’s try to sort out the selling aspect. My fellow Jewel Collect members are discussing the benefits of various web-sites. eBay has the most traffic but the cost and some new procedures make it unappealing to some members. One  member who was a long time eBay seller who no longer uses that web-site. She believes eBay has made changes which make it more difficult to find jewelry. My experience is a little different. I can find jewelry with an eBay search. I would love to hear from you. What are your experiences?

Many Jewel Collect (JC) members use Ruby Lane. As a shopper, I LOVE Ruby Lane. I also use this site as method to educate myself about designers and to price some of my jewelry. When you shop on Ruby Lane you are able to look at shop profiles and I note many of the shops have been active for a year or more and have sold less than 1000 items. This is also a relatively expensive site to use to host your shop. In addition, if anyone believes the item who listed is not exactly what you think, they can complain and the item is immediately taken down. You have to find a published picture or other proof of authenticity to get the piece re-posted.

Etsy is new to me. This web-site is popular with JC members. I may open a web-store there because it is inexpensive. In additon, as you can see here, there is a marketing tool, Wall of Jewels, I currently link to. The coordinator from Wall of Jewels produces some advertising for the group.

I am concerned about spending money when I am not making sells. I am dedicated to using free tools first. I have signed up and appear on “Top Hundred Vintage Jewelry Sites.” It is free.  I am applying to be a store on Jewelry Ring”s Mall. I opened Bernie’s Vintage Facebook page. I must learn to use this new tool. And I did pay $25.00 to join Lincoln County’s Buy Local. It is a web-site dedicated to attract our county residents to buy from local merchants. I joined it to support other local merchants as much as to promote my store.

Whew, I will be back with pictures and new information about the world of Vintage Jewelry Collecting and Selling.  Bernie

Posted in Ebay, Etsy, Marketing Collectibles, Rhinestone Jewelry Repair, Ruby Lane, Selling Vintage Jewelry, Vintage Collectibles, Vintage Rhinestone Jewelry | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy New Year – Resolved to learn more about Jewelry!!

Hello Bling Lovers,

My New Year’s resolution is to learn more about vintage and antique jewelry. I want to know the designers, how to clean my jewelry, photograph jewelry, repair jewelry and how to price jewelry for sale. Other collectors have been generous in sharing knowledge with me and I appreciate it. My local jeweler has been extremely helpful in helping me effectively clean old silver. I have even read about removing foil from stones in order to be able to use them for repairs on pieces that use unfoiled rhinestones. Too wonderful.

Here is the method I read about. I have not tried it myself, yet. Submerge the stone in a mixture of salt and vinegar. They did not give proportions but said to use a lot of salt. The microwave for about 15-20 seconds. Let the stone set for another 2 hours. The foil should rub off at this point. If not microwave again and continue to soak.

And now I am working with buttons because  a collector is interested in making buttons bracelets. I have too old button bracelets and lots of vintage buttons. I have to go locate the button bracelet. Actually, I think I have two. If anyone is interested. Go to and contact me. Bernie

Posted in Cleaning Rhinestone Jewelry, Photographing Jewelry, Rhinestone Jewelry Repair, Scanning Jewelry, Vintage Button Bracelets, Vintage Collectibles, Vintage Rhinestone Jewelry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Merry Christmas Bling Lovers!

Hello Bling Lovers,

Just a quick note to say Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all. I am on my way to see my daughters and grand girls. We all love jewelry and I have shared so many pieces from my Mom’s wonderful collection. Back soon with more information on my jewelry journey. I am learning to test identify and clean jewelry.  I can make small repairs now and have many extra rhinestones and crystals to help me with my projects. See you all after the holidays!  Bernie

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment