Costume Jewelry- Loved by Many, Repaired by Few

Posted by Joanna Rubini on

Costume jewelry is not a new creation, but the materials used in today's are far more complex and volatile than your grandmother's day.  Old materials: brass, sterling silver, copper.  New materials used: zinc, pewter, miscellaneous metal of indeterminate lineage, stainless steel, titanium, tungsten, brass, copper...etc, and more often than not with a heavy duty plating of another metal. Costume jewelry is more widely owned & worn due to its accessible price point versus precious metal jewelry, but it is often more challenging to repair.  The metals used may not want to be soldered, or rhinestones can easily be damaged in the repairing process, or the plating and/or metal will literally spontaneously combust if any heat is applied to it. So what highly trained jeweler in their right mind would dare bother with fixing it?  We will!  We can sometimes solder it and then apply a 'dressing' of sorts to disguise the repair, or our specialized jewelry adhesion works a treat too.  Rhinestones can be replaced, clip earrings converted to post, or vice versa. Necklaces shortened or lengthened.  Yes, we do it all!  Because ultimately, jewelry value is all in the eye of the beholder.  Costume or precious metal, jewelry is most often about the meaning behind it or the feeling sustained when wearing it.  Someone has save the day.  or save the necklace. Or make grandma's borrowed blue earrings into post to wear on your wedding day.  We got this!

Rhinestone BraceletThis vintage bracelet is missing a few rhinestones.  Sometimes we can match them and sometimes we can come close and sometimes clear is the only way to go as far as stone color.

 

 

 

 

 

Untangle Dangle

 

 

This earring was simply a matter of untangling all of its many strands.  A cinch for Raquel Rubini, our matriarch, and a few simple tools. 

Flexible Fashion HoopsThese hoops came in, her favorites, with the issue of falling off despite being stainless steel, which is relatively sturdy.  Because of their large diameter, they would flex just enough to pull the post from it's holster.  We chose to solder the posts straight and provide earring backs so she could still wear them as hoops, just in a slightly more reliable way. 
Delicate Paua DangleThis earring has a pearl and shell that are both sensitive to heat, and the rings holding the ear wire to the setting are sealed, so there is no easy way to detach the wire from the setting to repair it.  We did a quick solder on the wire where it was severed (right were it goes through the earlobe) and we were thus able to repair the broken wire while preserving the plating on the metal and saving the sensitive materials used in the earring.
This leather bracelet required rewiring of a section of beads including thRewired Wildthinge little wire knots. A simple fix, if you know what to do and are willing to do it!
If we can fix it, we will!  We are always willing to try anything.  Sometimes we fail but more often, we repair that which no other jeweler will touch...so don't trash it, treasure it <3
 

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