Whether you're looking for western antique jewelry as a jewelry lover, collector, or special gift, the rustic charm and beauty of western pieces is undeniable.
About Western Antique Jewelry
Western antique jewelry encompasses stylistic elements pertaining to western motifs or designs. These include motifs such as cowboys, horses, steer, and bighorn sheep. Scrolling and floral designs are common, either as part of another design or alone. Sterling silver is prominent in western jewelry, but other materials, such as rose and yellow gold, nickel, and bronze, are also common. Gem stones or other items are often used as accents rather than as focal points.
Although definitions of "antique" or "vintage" vary in regards to jewelry, a piece older than 25 years may be considered an antique piece of western jewelry.
Types of Vintage Western Jewelry
With its rich ornamentation, vintage western jewelry offers quite a contrast to many of the simplistic or minimalist contemporary styles. Popular items of western jewelry in the antique market include:
- Cuff Bracelets: Thick Mexican and Native American cuff bracelets are beautiful and popular.
- Belt Buckles: Large, ornamental belt buckles, popularized by western movies in the 1940's this accessory is a crux of western jewelry.
- Watch Fobs: Used with pocket watch chains, these decorative accessories encompass a variety of styles, from horses to a fob emblematizing the famous Hanging Judge, Isaac C. Parker.
- Cuff Links: This essential was often engraved, and the western styles sometimes included accents of rubies or other stones.
- Tie Jewelry: A classy addition to a man's ensemble, vintage western tie pins, tacks, and bars appear in a variety of designs.
- Bolos: A cord fastened with an ornamental clasp, bolos are classic western wear. Antiques were often made of porcelain, agate, onyx, or sterling silver.
- Earrings: Dangling Native American earrings are popular western antique items.
- Rings: Bands for men and women in sterling silver or gold and Native American styles with turquoise, mother-of-pearl, or other stones.
- Necklaces: Although one of the less common pieces of western antique jewelry, beaded necklaces, western-theme pendants, and Native American styles fall into this category.
Introduced in the early 1900's, the western belt buckle became a beloved accessory. One of the most popular items for western antique jewelry lovers and collectors are belt buckles, and among these, trophy buckles hold a special place of honor.
Although many people look for authentic, original items of western antique jewelry, the cost can be high, and collectors may not want to submit the prized items to daily wear and tear as an accessory. To solve this problem, many people turn to vintage or antique reproductions of western jewelry for beautiful looks at lowers costs. The following stores offer reproduction western jewelry:
Buying Authentic Western Jewelry
Although there are many trustworthy stores and sellers offering authentic western antique jewelry, be aware there are also less-ethical sellers that may attempt to pass off inauthentic items as genuine. Ebay offers a wide selection of vintage western items and jewelry, but as with any jewelry purchase, be sure to buy from trusted sellers with positive feedback. Always peruse photos and ask questions or for additional information about any aspect of the jewelry you are unsure of. Ebay western antique stores include:
Other stores selling western vintage jewelry include:
Prices range from under twenty dollars to several thousand dollars, depending on the materials, age, and type of jewelry.