How to Choose the Right Antique Earrings

How to Choose the Right Antique Earrings

These hot summer months offer the perfect opportunity to style your hair into a glamorous updo and sport a pair of face-framing earrings. With all the allure of antique and vintage jewelry, some of the most common questions we get involve the sometimes complex types of earring closures that were used in past decades. 

But have no fear…

You might be surprised to learn that some earring backs of yesteryear will be familiar to you, as the dawn of the Industrial Revolution perfected a few innovations still widely in use today.

A delicate dance of style and functionality.

French hooks and their enclosed counterparts lever backs are still commonly used in modern dangles. Butterfly backs, which rely on tension and compression to stay closed, and screw backs, which offer a secure closure in just a twist, have remained favorites for closures on stud earrings and more.

These four earring backings are convenient and the decision to use one style versus another requires careful consideration of the piece itself; considerations such as weight, construction, and wearability all come into play. 

Earring closures decoded.

Those, along with the occasional pair of clip-ons, are by far the most common types of earring closures that exist in antique pieces still available today. So, it follows that less-seen styles like omega backs, box clasps, and even barrel backs can leave antique jewelry collectors scratching their heads.

When considering a new-to-you pair of earrings, the last thing you want to be wondering about is how in the world do you get them on…

At Walton's, we like to put those worries to rest and happily replace antique earring backings with more conventional options as a complimentary service to our collectors before they reach our cases or website, and by appointment for your own heirlooms.

Whether you're looking for some new-to-you sparkle to brighten your summer or hoping to update family treasures into a wearable new life, our jewelry experts are ready.

We're here to help and can't wait to hear from you!
Julie and the Walton's Team