Friday, June 08, 2007

Vintage Jewelry Tip: Resource Guides

Vintage Jewelry Tip Of The Month:Most Useful Reference and Price Guides 05/07

There are so many resource and price guides available for vintage jewelry but how are you supposed to know which ones are most worth investing in? Our library contains over 50 of these books so we've outlined the ones we find most useful for identification, information, and pricing.

1. Unsigned Beauties of Costume Jewelry: Identification and Values by Marcia Sparkles Brown: A collector favorite! - This book has many photos of jewelry of all different kinds. It's fun to search through or pieces you already own! The price guide is reasonable although consideration is not given to unsigned pieces that are known to be from certain manufactures which results in an under pricing for some items.

2. Collecting Rhinestone & Colored Jewelry by Maryanne Dolan. - We like this book not only for the pictures and price guide (most pictures are in black and white) but for the extensive section on designer trademarks. It will encourage you to search for designers you had never heard of before! Almost half of the large 399 page book is dedicated to this topic with images of each mark included.

3. Answers to Questions About Old Jewelry: Covers 1840-1950 by Jeanenne Bell - This book has information about jewelry and fashion specific to each time period with pictures and values to support it. If you are purely interested in costume jewelry, you may be put off by the amount of fine jewelry represented in this book. However, it is a valuable resource for learning about fine pieces and styles which costume jewelry you collect was modeled after.

If you have a more refined, eclectic taste for vintage jewelry, we strongly recommend the following three books. I don't believe "American Costume Jewelry" is being produced anymore so you may have to find it in the second hand market. Please feel free to comment on this if you know more.

A TRIBUTE TO AMERICA by Carla and Roberto Brunialti

AMERICAN COSTUME JEWELRY by Carla and Roberto Brunialti


What are your favorite books on vintage jewelry? Let us and others know by leaving a comment.


  1. I want to really recommend a book for anyone collecting Antique and Vintage Silver Jewelry Collectible Silver Jewelry (the updated 2005 version) by Fred Rezazadeh. I found it to be very accurate, reliable and helpful.

    Has some good help on maker mark identification.

    Best of Luck

  2. I lowe your site, it's very intresting!!! It's my site:

  3. Thanks Allison! I had been unable to log into Blogger for a while so I'm sorry I didn't publish your comment sooner. And I agree. "Collectible Silver Jewelry" is a great book for silvers.

  4. Thank you for leaving your site. Your jewelry is quite beautiful!

  5. Very interesting thoughts. Thanks a lot,