Beauty & Fashion

Jewellery for keeps: what makes for an ideal heirloom piece?

Jewellery for keeps: what makes for an ideal heirloom piece?

Isn’t every girls dream to receive a beautiful piece of jewellery from a special family member? A granny or mother has stashed a special piece away and chosen your birthday to gift you with this family treasure.

“An heirloom piece of jewellery is a meaningful object that lives in a family and gets passed down through several generations, “says Black Betty founder and designer Kristin Weixelbaumer.

Now not every heirloom piece needs to rival the Queens pearl-drop earrings now worn by the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. “The value and beauty of a piece of jewellery are factors to consider  – but the story behind them is the most important element,” says Weixelbaumer.

Heirlooms are a direct link to a family’s history and are usually linked to a special occasion – a marriage, the birth or christening of a child or a milestone anniversary. If you’re thinking of investing in an heirloom piece, then you’ll need to keep the following in mind:

  1. Precious metal

In terms of metal, gold or platinum are first prize. Silver is next best, but it is a much softer metal compared to the others.


  1. Be a gem

If you want a gemstone, the Big Five Gems: Diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds and tanzanite – provide the most in terms of financial value. In terms of durability, sapphires and rubies are the best due to their almost diamond-like hardness.


  1. Standing the test of time

When you purchase an item that you intend to pass on as an heirloom one day, consider its style and quality. It should be solidly made with first class materials that hold up to wear and tear. Finally, think timeless rather than trendy. Choose a classic style that will never go out of fashion.


  1. Format considerations

Think about the type of item that is likely to survive several generations: solitaire diamond studs are understated and hold their value. Pearls are a timeless addition to any jewellery collection – specifically when mounted in rings or worn individually as earrings.  A simple gem suspended off a good quality necklace is a stylish and beautiful option.

Heirloom options across different price brackets:



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Get It Joburg West – November 2018

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