Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (2022)

By

Pamela Wiggins

Pamela Wiggins

Pamela Wiggins is a highly regarded antique and collectible costume jewelry expert and appraiser. She co-founded the Costume Jewelry Collectors International, a global educational website. Pamela has over 30 years of experience and has been writing for 20 years.

Learn more about The Spruce Crafts'Editorial Process

Updated on 05/06/20

Contemporary collectible jewelry marks are sometimes just as intriguing as the pieces themselves. Also referred to as "jewelry stamps" or "maker's marks," these imprints help confirmthe authenticity of the jewelry and can sometimes indicate the production date. Usually, the marks consist of the manufacturer or designer's name or initials, but sometimes they feature a symbol. Familiarizing yourself with the markings and manufacturers will be helpful if you want toresearch the worth of your pieces.

  • 01 of 25

    ART

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (1)

    Mode-Art, a jewelry company founded in New York City in the late 1940s, was owned by Arthur Pepper. This "ART" mark was usedafter 1955 as indicated by the copyright symbol. The company alsoused the mark "Mode Art" on its pieces.Mode-Art competed directly with Florenza in terms of style but the founders of both companies counted one another as friends, as related to Pamela Wiggins by Larry Kassoff, the son of Florenza's founder.

  • 02 of 25

    Chanel

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (2)

    This House of Chanel mark is one of several that were used during the 1970s moving into the early 1980s. This version shows the copyright and registered symbols above "CHANEL" in block letters on a round cartouche. The familiar interlocking "CC" logo and "Made in France" completes the bottom of the design. Marks from this era can be found both with and without the featured circular outline.

    Chanel has used many different marks since the 1960s, including both round and oval cartouche signature plates and sometimes stamping CHANEL directly into the piece. The earliest pieces of Chanel jewelry were unmarked. Most of the older jewelry from the 1930s, '40s, and '50s are in private collections and rarely come up for sale. Pieces marked Chanel in script lettering were made by Chanel Novelty Company in the early 1940s, and were not made by the House of Chanel.

    Costume jewelry by Chanel is unique in that once the season has passed and pieces are no longer available in retail boutiques, they're already considered collectible on the secondary market.

  • 03 of 25

    Ciner

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (3)

    Ciner used several similar marks on vintage costume jewelry. Jewelry by this brand can be hard to decipher since they don't include a year on the stamp. However, if you find a Ciner piece that includes a copyright symbol, it's safe to assume the piece was made after 1955.

  • 04 of 25

    Craft

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (4)

    Gem-Craft, a company doing business in the Providence, Rhode Island area, stamped their jewelry with this "CRAFT" mark. Ron Verri, the owner of the company, confirmed that as of 2015, the business was no longer making jewelry under their own brand. They do still make jewelry for other lines such as Oscar de la Renta and Kenneth Jay Lane.

    Continue to 5 of 25 below.

    (Video) Vintage Costume Jewelry Identification 101 (Part 1)
  • 05 of 25

    DeMario-Hagler

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (5)

    Stanley Hagler used this odd mark on occasion on his costume pieces. A potential partnership between Robert De Mario company and Hagler failed in the 1960s, but his workshop did use up these marks that were made in anticipation of the collaboration.

  • 06 of 25

    Dominique

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (6)

    While some sellers refer to Dominique as a she (perhaps confusing the name with French jewelry designer Dominique Aurientis), jewelry with this mark was produced for several decades by the late Dominic DeTorain his Rhode Island workshop.

    Known as "Dom" to his fans, DeToraworked for a company that produced jewelry bearing the names Weiss and Eisenberg during the 1950s, and he employed the same "vintage" techniques to manufacture his own quality jewelry line. He is known for his large rhinestone collar and bib necklaces, which are quite popular with collectors.

    DeTora's most famouspiecesare his Christmas tree pins, which have appeared in manybooks devoted to collectible holiday jewelry as well as general collectible jewelry price guides. The earliest Dominique pieces were unsigned, and sometimes his early necklaces are confused with Juliana (DeLizza & Elster) designs. He began signing his jewelry during the early 1990s and retired from the jewelry business in 2010. He passed away in 2016.

  • 07 of 25

    Fashioncraft Robert

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (7)

    This company began in New York City as The Fashioncraft Jewelry Co. and was renamed Robert Originals Inc. in the early 1960s. Early jewelry was marked Fashioncraft Robert. Later pieces were marked Original by Robert.

    The "Robert" in the name refers to Robert Levy, one of the original founders of Fashioncraft. Styles are often similar to Miriam Haskell and DeMario designs, although they were not related.

  • 08 of 25

    Hannah

    Hannah Buslee designed jewelry using semi-precious stones, freshwater pearls, Swarovski crystals, and antique beads wired to filigree plates.

    Buslee began designing contemporary versions of costume jewelry reminiscent of older hand-wired pieces made by Haskell, DeMario, and Robert in 1992. Her designs were sold in Washington boutiques in the Puget Sound area, and stores along the East Coast. Hannah jewelry is of high quality, and many pieces are one-of-a-kind and/or limited editions.

    Continue to 9 of 25 below.

  • 09 of 25

    Hollycraft

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (9)

    This is the mark of Hollywood Jewelry Mfg. Co. (1936–1979) founded by Joseph Chorbajian. Produced jewelry in the 1940s bearing a paper Hollywood Mfg. Co. hangtag. Early pieces are not dated, nor are those made after the 1950s. Pieces simply marked Hollycraft are dated based on the styles, components, and findings.

  • 10 of 25

    (Video) Beginner's Guide to 5 Vintage Costume Jewelry Marks You Can Find to Resell for Profit

    Kenneth Jay Lane - K.J.L.

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (10)

    The first Kenneth Jay Lane jewelry pieces made during the 1960s and early 1970s sported this simple "K.J.L." mark.

    The late Kenneth Jay Lane began his career designing shoes for Christian Dior in the early 1960s. Not long after, he worked with Arnold Scassi making jewelry to coordinate with a line of shoes embellished with imitation gemstones. Since falling into the business decades ago, Lane’s fabulously fake costume jewelry has been owned, worn, and collected by celebrities, and royalty alike. He also marketed his jewelry very successfully through QVC for many years.

  • 11 of 25

    Marvella

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (11)

    This New York company's most well-known lines feature faux pearls, but they used many different materials including crystal beads and rhinestones.

    Marvella originated as a line of jewelry manufactured by the Weinrich Bros. Co. The Jewelers’ Circular published in 1919 refers to the Weinreich Brothers located in Philadelphia where the company was founded in 1911. At some point, the brothers moved their business to New York City, as referenced in 1950s jewelry patents registered by the company.

    The company changed its name to Marvella, Inc. around 1965 after several iterations of similar names. Marvella was purchased by Trifari in the early 1980s and eventually became part of the Liz Claiborne group. As of 2010, jewelry wasstill being distributed in department stores and other retail outlets on cards bearing the Marvella name.

  • 12 of 25

    Matisse Renoir

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (12)

    This is the mark of Renoir of California (1948–1964) used on enameled copper jewelry introduced in 1952. The copyright symbol was added to mark in the mid-1950s.Jewelry by this company crafted simply of copper with no enameling bears only the Renoir mark.

    Continue to 13 of 25 below.

  • 13 of 25

    Mazer

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (13)

    Joseph Mazer used this mark from 1946–1981 after leaving Mazer Brothers. The "Mazer Bros." mark was used from the mid-1920s to 1951 (even after 1946 when Joseph left the business). Joseph Mazer also used the "JOMAZ" mark on some of his own company's jewelry.

    Because jewelry marked Mazer was made through several decades, the style, and components of each piece should be used as a guide for dating.

  • 14 of 25

    Mimi di N

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (14)

    This is the mark used by Mimi di Niscemi. Some pieces were dated in the 1970s and 80s with a more block-style "Mimi di N" mark.

    Mimi di Niscemi worked with Arnold Scassi, Robert DeMario, and Brania before forming her own company. She is known not only for jewelry but for ornate belt buckles as well.

  • 15 of 25

    Mistar Bijoux

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (15)

    The trademark for this brand was filed by L'Etoile, Inc. of Los Angeles, California, in 1990 and canceled in 2003. The mark was used on good quality rhinestone earrings, bracelets, and necklaces sold in department stores such as Dillard's and Macy's.

    (Video) Pricing Jewelry Antique & Vintage: Costume, Rings, Necklaces, Earrings, Gemstones by Dr. Lori

  • 16 of 25

    Original by Robert

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (16)

    This company began in New York City as The Fashioncraft Jewelry Co. and was renamed Robert Originals in the early 1960s. Early jewelry was marked with this "Fashioncraft Robert" stamp.

    "Robert" refers to Robert Levy, one of the original founders of Fashioncraft. Styles are often similar to Miriam Haskell and DeMario's designs, although the businesses were not related.

    Continue to 17 of 25 below.

  • Ornella

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (17)

    The company manufacturing Ornella jewelry was founded in 1946 by Piera Barni Albani in Milan, Italy. His daughter, Maria Vittoria Albani, joined the business as its designer in the 1950s. Most pieces marked Ornella, which were made through the early 1970s, are made with Italian glass beads, and some feature ornate rhinestone-embellished clasps. Several designs were marked with stickers that are likely no longer be present on the piece.

  • 18 of 25

    Pennino

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (18)

    This company was founded in 1926 as Pennino Bros. in New York City. Pennino marks, sometimes small and lightly stamped, can be easily overlooked.

    Examples marked Pennino Sterling were made in the 1940s and may have a gold wash over the silver. Pennino jewelry is finely crafted, and collectors avidly seek the company's exquisite, real-look pieces.

  • 19 of 25

    Pell

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (19)

    This New York company was founded by the Gaita brothers in 1941. The mark with the copyright symbol as shown was used after 1955. Prior mark was "PELL" in block letters.

    Pell has made jewelry and tiaras in conjunction with many entities including Disney, the Miss America Organization, and Coro. The company's jewelry has also been merchandised on QVC. Alfred Gaita Jr. currently continued running the business into the late 2000s.

  • 20 of 25

    Regency

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (20)

    This is the mark of Regina Novelty Co. which was established in New York City in 1950. The business also used the Regency Jewels mark on their later rhinestone jewelry styles and some beaded necklaces.

    Regency jewelry was manufactured using high-quality rhinestones, art glass stones, and glass beads. Some of their most valuable pieces feature saphiret cabochons.

    Continue to 21 of 25 below.

  • 21 of 25

    Schoffel & Co., Austria

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (21)

    Jewelry bearing this crown markwas made by Schoffel & Co. of Austria. The stamp is sometimes accompanied by the word “Austria” or “Made in Austria” but was also used alone.

    This company is known for making jewelry using quality Austrian crystal rhinestones in designs ranging from dainty and feminine to flashy and complex. The business is believed to have startedas early as the 1930s and was active in jewelry production into the 1960s.

    (Video) Vintage Costume Jewelry Identification & Appraisals
  • 22 of 25

    SENT Murano

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (22)

    This metal hangtagmark is found on contemporaryVenetian glass jewelry handcrafted in Murano, Italy, by the studio of sisters Susanna and Marina Sent.

    According to the Sent website, the Sent sisters are descendants of Venetian glassmakers. Susanna studied architecture, and Marina focused on chemistry in their schooling but came back together to form a jewelry business. Their approach is to design unique pieces using Venetian glass beads and other components like wood and paper to create wearable artistic expressions.

  • 23 of 25

    Warner

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (23)

    The Warner jewelry company was founded by Joseph Warner in the early 1950s. His business used high-quality stones and materials. Their designs are well-known for japanned (blackened) metal settings.

  • 24 of 25

    Whiting & Davis

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (24)

    This logo features wording similar to the logo used on the company's metal mesh handbags without the "mesh bags" denotation. The mark shown here is from a pair of earrings from the 1950s.

    Continue to 25 of 25 below.

  • 25 of 25

    Wm de Lillo

    Vintage and Collectible Costume Jewelry Marks (25)

    This is the mark of William de Lillo and Robert Clark (former head designer for Miriam Haskell in the early '60s) first used in 1967. Some pieces are marked only de Lillo.
    William de Lillo's partnership with Robert Clark began after de Lillo had worked for and Harry Winston in the fine jewelry space, according to Adornment magazine. The costume jewelry they produced incorporated elegant components, including Swarovski rhinestones and quality crystal beads. Pieces bearing the Wm de Lillo or deLillo mark are desirable to collectors today. The team ceased production of their jewelry lines during the mid-'70s and moved to France then doing freelance work for design houses such as Schiaparelli and Nina Ricci. This brand is not related to newer imported jewelry with a WM mark.

    Sources

    Wiggins, Pamela Y."Warman's CostumeJewelry: Identification and Price Guide."Krause Publications, July 14, 2014.

    Romero, Christie. "Warman’s Jewelry." Krause Publications, third edition, December 1,2002.

    Rainwater, Dorothy T."American Jewelry Manufacturers."Schiffer, January 8, 1997.

    Moro,Ginger."European Designer Jewelry." Schiffer, January 8, 1997.

    Schwartz,Barbara.TruFaux Jewels, 2010.

    Lewis, Melinda and Pamela Y. Wiggins.Costume Jewelry Collectors International, 2009.

    Stringfield,Dotty.Illusion Jewels,1997.

    Clarke, Jane Haley.Morning Glory Antiques, 1994.

    (Video) How to Identify and Date Vintage & Retro Costume Jewelry Brooches

FAQs

How do I know if my vintage costume jewelry is valuable? ›

How to Tell valuable Costume Jewelry by Dr. Lori - YouTube

How do I identify costume jewelry? ›

These markings are usually located on the inside of a ring or bracelet, the post of an earring, or the clasp of a necklace; if the clasp does not have a marking, chances are the piece is costume jewelry.

What type of costume jewelry is valuable? ›

Look for clear details, well-decorated elements, sharp lines, crisp figures, even prongs, strong settings, sparkling faux stones, glass, or other high-end materials to value costume jewelry.

Is there an app that can identify vintage jewelry? ›

Hallmarks - Identify Antique on the App Store.

How do I identify my jewelry markings? ›

Gold purity is measured in karats with 24 karats representing the highest value. Gold jewelry marked "750" or "18k" indicates a blended metal consisting of 75% gold and 25% other alloys or elements. Likewise, a "585" or "14k" imprint indicates a gold content equal to 58.5% of the whole.

Is there an app to identify jewelry? ›

Google Lens: For Identifying Everything

By uploading a picture or using the camera in real-time, Google Lens is an impressive identifier of a wide range of items including animal breeds, plants, flowers, branded gadgets, logos, and even rings and other jewelry.

What does PD stamped on jewelry mean? ›

However, usually a ring stamped with Pd indicates that it is made of 95% Palladium or better. In the U.S., a jeweler has the choice to stamp a 95% Palladium ring with either Pd, Pall., or PD 950 but they all have the same meaning.

How do I know if jewelry is worth anything? ›

How to Tell If My Jewelry Is Worth Anything
  1. LOOK FOR HALLMARKS. One of the first things you can do when you acquire a new piece of jewelry is to look for hallmarks. ...
  2. LOOK FOR WEARING. Fake chains feel fake. ...
  3. TRY THE MAGNET TEST. Genuine gold will not attract a magnet. ...
  4. INSPECT THE PRONGS. ...
  5. CONSULT AN EXPERT.

What old jewelry is worth money? ›

The 10 Most Rare and Valuable Vintage Costume Jewelry in the World Today
No.NamePrice
1Crown Trifari Ruby Red Glass Poinsettia Flower Brooch$7,499
2Lunch At the Ritz Safari Jungle Belt$1,655
3Schreiner New York Black and Pink Champagne Glass Cabochons Ruffle Brooch Pin$1,495
4Christian Dior Musical Box Costume Brooch$1,470
6 more rows

What are the most valuable brooches? ›

10 Most Valuable Antique Brooches
Antique BroochPrice
A Belle Époque Diamond Devant-De-Corsage Brooch$17,500,000
Prince Albert Brooch$10,787,520
Cullinan V Brooch$2,696,880
The Cullinan VI and VIII brooch$2,696,880
6 more rows

Can you make money selling vintage costume jewelry? ›

Pawn shops usually purchase your old costume jewelry. It doesn't pay out as much unless it's a designer piece. If your costume pieces contain gold, silver, or diamonds then you're looking at a hefty sum of cash.

How can you tell real gold jewelry from costume? ›

Marks and markings are the easiest way to tell if a piece is fake, phony, or fraudulent. A rule of thumb for most pieces of costume jewelry is that authentically marked pieces are commonly die-stamped into the metal on a piece of costume jewelry. A cast mark, commonly used on fake pieces, are not sharp.

What does trifari mean on jewelry? ›

Trifari Costume Jewelry is made of materials that differ from fine colored gemstones, old pawn Indian jewelry, valuable pearls, etc. Trifari pieces use an array of materials like rhinestones, coral, enamel, jade, and colored stones set in metal settings.

Is there a market for costume jewelry? ›

The costume jewelry market was valued at $32.9 billion in 2019, and is estimated to reach $ 59.7 billion by 2027, registering a CAGR of 7.80% from 2020 to 2027.

Can you make money selling vintage costume jewelry? ›

Pawn shops usually purchase your old costume jewelry. It doesn't pay out as much unless it's a designer piece. If your costume pieces contain gold, silver, or diamonds then you're looking at a hefty sum of cash.

What should I look for in vintage jewelry? ›

There are four characteristics of vintage jewelry to look for while you're shopping: the design style, techniques, materials used, and stamps. These characteristics vary based on the era they were produced in.

Videos

1. Identifying Mystery Jewelry Maker Marks
(Olive's Vintage Market)
2. How to Tell Vintage Costume Jewelry, Trifari & Lydell, Marks, Values | Goodwill Bluebox by Dr. Lori
(Dr. Lori)
3. Vintage Costume Jewelry Identification & Appraisals
(Creative Unique's)
4. How to Identify and Date Vintage & Retro Costume Jewelry Brooches
(Olive's Vintage Market)
5. Valuable Vintage Costume Jewelry That Sells for Big Money
(The Auction Professor)
6. How to Identify and Date Vintage & Retro Costume Jewelry Brooches
(Olive's Vintage Market)

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