Three Foolproof Methods for Removing Verdigris from Fine and Costume Jewelry

Verdigris is what happens when metals are weathered and exposed to air and moisture over time. The good news is that it’s easy to remove, and it’s easy to remove from costume jewelry and fine jewelry alike.

sterling silver statement necklace

How to Identify Sterling Silver Jewelry

Sterling silver is a common metal for jewelry because it ages well, is easy to manipulate, and is more affordable than gold or platinum. By definition, sterling silver is silver that is 925/1000 parts silver, or 92.5% silver. Pure silver (99% +) is too soft for jewelry-making so the highest silver content in jewelry is usually…

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siam sterling

What is Siam Sterling?

Siam Sterling jewelry was manufactured from the 1930s through the 1980s, and was a very popular motif in the 1950-60s. Although Siam officially changed its name to Thailand in the 1940s, the “Siam” nickname for this style of jewelry stuck.  Siam silver is officially called “Nielloware.” Niello is a black mixture of copper, silver, and lead, used as an inlay on engraved…

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A History of Creepy Dolls

When I first started going to auctions, I accidentally bid on and won a creepy doll. At an estate auction, I didn’t like the cut of some lady’s jib, and bid her up on a random item to be a jerk and give her a hard time. This is a common, if ill-advised, auction practice —…

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How to Identify Stanhope Jewelry

Several months ago, I lucked out and found a large stash of Stanhope novelty pieces at a garage sale. The collection I had to choose from was mostly religious icons, like tiny paintings of saints, the Lord’s Prayer, and other iconography hidden in keychains and cross pendants. The naughty Stanhopes, however are highly collectible —…

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“…but if you’re looking for a handgun, a really good sandwich, a 120 year-old political election pin, and a catalog of new and used Stephen King books, I can get you all these things in a one block radius.” AKA, a regular Saturday with me.

More on Thrift Store Shopping

1. I don’t thrift in town if I can help it. I travel to the smaller towns in the region, avoid Goodwill and Salvation Army, and hit up the little church thrifts in Nowhere, Indiana. One major reason I skip town that the tiny towns may not have excellent quality clothing, but they have a…

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Who Was G.G. Drayton?

If you’re local to the Lafayette, Indiana, area and you’ve eaten at Arni’s, you are probably already familiar with G.G. Drayton’s art without realizing it. She was well-known in her time for creating the “Dolly Dingle” and “Kaptain Kiddo” characters, including an extremely popular line of paper dolls — which are featured in jumbo size…

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Make Money Selling Used Clothes

As part of my regular hustle, I always try to make money selling used clothes. Unlike some folks out there who are buying and upselling strategic designer or high ticket items like jeans and purses, I like to take things I already own and turn them over for a dollar. I usually don’t shop in…

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I like his little hat.

Hand-made Guinea Pig Scale-Mail and Helmet (Armor), $8100.00


It turns out they have a name for this thing I do, where I go to a store to get a look at something, decide whether I like it, then go home to find it online for the best price: Showrooming. [Finding something you like in store, then looking for it or a comparable item…

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