Dating vintage jewelry by clasps

On most fine antique gold jewelry pieces, you will notice the links are individually soldered (a practice only a few high-end makers such as Tiffany & Co. If you have a fine item like this with a replaced clasp, look at the links that connect the newer clasp to the older links.The replaced links are not usually soldered like the rest of the piece.However, determining findings popularly used is possible.For example, in looking at the use of clip-back and the use of screw-back findings for earrings, a survey of those currently for sale found that from 1950 through 1955, screw-backs were used about 30% of the time, and clip-backs 70 percent of the time.

Beginning in the 1930s up to the mid-to-late 1950s, Trifari and Coro patented hundreds of costume jewelry designs.

Short of a date monogrammed on your jewelry, the clasp on your antique jewelry is perhaps your most significant indication of the date your jewelry was produced. It likely has a patent date and industrial hay day.

The standard for antique Victorian pieces will be the c clasp or “c clutch.” When buying antique jewelry, the c clutch is a great sign. Since it is generally inferior in mechanics to more modern clasps, its production in the latter half of the 1900s is nearly nonexistent.

Prior to the early 1950s, typical necklace clasp styles used by Coro and Trifari were spring ring, push (also known as box), or fold-over.

In the 1950s, a new type of clasp using a hook and extender became popular for costume jewelry necklaces.

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It is known that they were in business and marking jewelry with the Florenza brand beginning in the early 1950s until the company closed in February of 1981.

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