Feb 272016
 

ted film crewJewelry appraisers have ample opportunities to quash the hopes and dreams of clients expecting to feather their nest egg when we value their heirloom jewelry.  But, then mom’s “alexandrite” or grandma’s five carat “ruby” turn out to be synthetic corundum and you are the heavy. So it was refreshing to participate in a feel good story recently that got world-wide attention for a few minutes.

The Call

So, I get this call one day from a lady who had dined in a local restaurant and bit down on something hard in her seafood dish.   I have had this story a few times before and have yet to give happy news to the diner.  Well, this lady said the thing was dark and spherical so she took it home and did some research, leading her to think she might have an elusive quahog pearl.  My initial reaction, as always, was to explain that I would have to examine it, but don’t get your hopes up. Continue reading »

Jun 102015
 
Un aveugle guidant un autre aveugle ?

Un aveugle guidant un autre aveugle ?

Il y a de plus en plus d’annonces pour des expertises de bijoux en ligne, dans de nombreux pays et une quantité croissante d’entreprises qui offrent ce service. Ces sites sont trouvés par les consommateurs qui surfent sur le Web à la recherche d’un expert en bijoux. Ces sites représentent-ils une bonne option pour le consommateur? Je ne le pense pas. Même si je peux comprendre qu’une certaine commodité et son faible coût annoncé puissent être attrayants, il est important que le public comprenne les risques qu’il encourt en utilisant un service d’expertise dont, en fait, les réalisateurs auront jamais entre leurs mains les articles concernés.
Continue reading »

May 232015
 
The blind leading the blind?

The blind leading the blind?

There are more and more adverts for on-line jewellery appraising popping up in most countries and an every increasing amount of businesses offering this service. These websites are being found  by consumers who surf the web searching for a Jewellery Appraiser.  Are these places a good option for the consumer? I do not believe that they are.  Whilst I can appreciate that the perceived convenience and low cost can be attractive, it is important that the public understand the risks that they are running in using an appraisal service that has not actually examined the item being appraised.

Continue reading »

Nov 262011
 

Let me open by saying that I have a stock answer when asked for an opinion on Jewellery Shopping Channels – “I am one of their greatest fans but one of their biggest critics”.

I have publicly praised shopping channels but also lodged official complaints to The Advertising Standards Authority and The Office of Fair Trading.   The jewellery trade’s view of Shopping Channels is at best dismissive and at worst scathing.  Some of their views are wholly justified, while others are not, and have more to do with a reaction to a prolific competitor than anything else.

What follows is an objective view of buying jewellery from shopping channels in general, no particular channel is singled out for praise or criticism so some of the following points may not all apply to all Shopping Channels. Continue reading »

Dec 162010
 

Probably the most frequently occurring questions I am asked are those relating to the insurance of jewellery and why good valuation documentation is so important.

So here is some advice for you that I hope will help to ensure full protection of your most precious items.

Note – some of the amounts, definitions and terms relate to the New Zealand insurance environment and may not apply in other countries.

The Insurance Valuation

The most fundamental of all questions posed by clients are the ones asking why they should have their jewellery documented and valued in the first place. Continue reading »

Dec 122010
 

Dyed Chinese freshwater pearls sold as Tahitian pearls on eBay

Admin: Renee Newman is a Guest Author for the AIJV.
Here, Renee warns of the perils of following through with a deal that looks too good to be true.

Last January, a jewelry designer sent me an e-mail asking if the pearl market had crashed. She said she was searching on eBay for “black pearl” and the auctions came up with black pearls at ridiculous prices; costume jewelry cost more than the winning bids on these supposedly “Tahitian” pearls being sold out of China.  On pure impulse, she bought a “genuine Tahitian” black pearl necklace (see photo) when there was one minute left, and got it for $24.99, including priority shipping from Shanghai. Continue reading »

Nov 232010
 

If you do what I do for a living (that’s value jewellery, NOT write blogs) you’re loathe to tell this to people in social situations. I normally say “I’m in the jewellery trade” and hope they don’t press me. If I say that I value jewellery you normally see the eyes light up and then something shiny is dangled before me with the inevitable question “how much is this worth”. The thing is, I could give you four or five different answers, all being correct, depending on the context.

By the way I’m only joking. I tell people all the time what I do. How would you expect me to get any work otherwise! Continue reading »