We all have those pieces of jewelry, whether inherited or purchased, that are outdated. From your grandmother’s antique brooch to that pearl bracelet you received at graduation to the lavish chandelier earrings you bought for yourself 10 years ago, these items are often highly valuable, but out of style. Rather than pushing these totems to the back of your drawer, take them to a jeweler, who can repurpose old jewelry items, turning them into something completely different. Today, we talk with Cindi Earl of Cindi Earl Fine Jewelry and Maria Fouce of Anatra Jewel to learn how you can transform old jewelry into new pieces with intrinsic worth and enduring style.
It can be difficult to decipher what is worth repurposing. If the piece you have is composed of valuable materials, like gold, silver, diamonds or precious stones, then it is certainly worth the investment. The cost of repurposing jewelry is often much higher than customers anticipate, explains Maria at Anatra. The labor involved in salvaging and refashioning the original materials is far more extensive than people would imagine. So it’s advised to repurpose those pieces of real worth or true sentimental value.
When a piece is repurposed, the metals are melted down. Sometimes that same metal can be used to create a new item, but often it is resold by the owner if they choose to update the setting with a different metal. The stones are then salvaged and fashioned into a new orientation. The possibilities are truly endless with redesigning jewelry. Engagement rings can be turned into pendant necklaces, as can brooches and watches. Necklaces can likewise be formed into earrings, rings, bracelets and so on. Most jewelers prefer that customers arrive with an illustrated vision of what they want in the new piece. Pinterest is a great place to discover ideas for new designs and can provide great examples to bring to your jeweler.
Another great option for repurposing jewelry is to have your beads restrung on a mystery clasp. This ingenious device is a screw-like clasp that can be added into beads that have been drilled to fit each end. This allows metal extenders to be added to the ends of any of these beads. Not only does this give the stones an updated look, but it also allows you to change the spacing between the beads, so it’s like having lots of pieces all in one! See the examples of the mystery clasp from an extender below which we found at Cindi Earl.
The most important thing to remember about repurposing jewelry is that you are giving pieces of value a renewed life. Though often expensive, it is a great way to recycle what is already at your disposal. And with the right jeweler, the end results can be absolutely astonishing!