The Rhine River is in Austria, and the sand in the area of the Rhine River, has a lead content, that leads the sand, to sparkle and shine. At some point hundreds of years ago, the glass was removed from the riverbank, and used to make jewelry.
Yes, rhinestone jewelry dates as far back as the 1700s. Maybe even earlier, there weren’t too many people around back then to tell us the exact date of the origins of rhinestone costume jewelry. It’s anybody’s guess.
Swarovski popularized rhinestone jewelry in the 1800s, and is credited with the founding of rhinestone costume jewelry. His jewelry is known for high quality rhinestones, because these are crystal rhinestones. He isn’t using acrylic or plastic to make the rhinestones.
When lead oxide is added to glass, a crystal is produced. The more lead, the more sparkle in the crystal. In Europe more lead is required in making crystal than the United States requires, and as a result the rhinestone jewelry originating in Europe, may have more sparkle, and command a higher price.
Swarovski Rhinestone jewelry is some of the best quality rhinestone jewelry in the world. When you see earrings or brooches with the Swarovski symbol, you know you are buying quality rhinestones.
Trifari, an American Jewelry manufacturer that closed its doors a couple decades ago was known for manufacturing high end costume jewelry. One brooch, designed by Alfred Phillipe in the 1940s sold in 2019 at auction for over 9000.00. Yes, this was costume rhinestone jewelry, made in Providence, Rhode Island.
Why buy Rhinestone Costume Jewelry
While some pieces of rhinestone jewelry command a higher dollar than real gemstones, most don’t. Rhinestone jewelry is an affordable way to wear jewelry that looks like emeralds, diamonds, rubies and sapphires, without the high cost of these gemstones.
Because glass and crystal is used to make the better pieces, it is far more affordable, than finding a rare gem in the earth’s crust.
Most fine quality rhinestone jewelry can be purchased for under $100.00, even in today’s high inflationary times.
Rhinestones are made of glass. Rhinestones are made of crystal. Rhinestones are made of plastic, and rhinestones are made of acrylic.
The best ones are made of crystal and glass. The least costly are made of plastic, and acrylic.
If you want really inexpensive rhinestones at a low cost, plastic is the way to go. There is no lead. They won’t break. They are mass produced. Rhinestones have been mass produced for for over 20 years so if you want to know if its vintage, which means it is at least 20 years old, it probably qualifies. If you want to know if its plastic or glass or crystal clink the rhinestone. If it clinks, it is glass or crystal, as plastic won’t give you a clinking sound.
Always look at the setting that rhinestones are placed in. Is the rhinestone set with prongs, or with glue? Are there any rhinestones missing? Missing rhinestones reduce the value of rhinestone jewelry, however if the piece is exceedingly rare, it still will hold its value even with missing rhinestones.
Rhinestone costume jewelry is an excellent fashion accessory. You can wear rings, bracelets, brooches, necklaces and earrings with rhinestones and look like you are wearing real jewels.
Rhinestone costume jewelry can be found at www.grandmasjewelry123.com where you can link to our ebay store. See you there.