Some people are lucky enough to have some beautiful family heirlooms and jewellery that can be treasured and be passed down to the next generation. The issue is that due to them being old, they are sometimes aren’t wearable due to them being damaged or very old and fragile. This can be a nuisance, but there are a few options that you can choose from to do something with it rather than just staying in a safe place for it to get older. In this article, we will go through some methods in which you can upcycle heirlooms so they can last another lifetime. Whether it’s your grandma’s favourite personalised bracelet or your grandfather’s special watch, an heirloom is to stay in the family for generations.
Have Gemstones Reset
If you have an old piece such as vintage emerald rings you won’t want to just leave it somewhere to erode further, you will want to get something done to it so it lasts. One way you could do this is by resetting the gemstones. Often when old jewellery is not well looked after, it can tarnish and the setting can become loose. It is, however, possible to get the metal polished and the setting fixed. If this is not an option, then you could always look at having the gems moved to a new setting.
If you have a ring, then you could even choose a setting that is better suited for you so you can wear it with pride. You could even move the gems to something else such as a bracelet or necklace.
Have The Piece Professionally Cleaned
If you have a piece that looks like it is in good condition but the shine has gone or it looks a little dirty, then you can get the piece professionally cleaned. Although you can clean antique and vintage jewellery, it is best to leave it to the professionals. This will give much better results and they will be able to assess the ring to see if it will need work in the future or if it needs sorting now.
Every piece of jewellery is different so it is worth hiring a professional to clean the piece with the correct products. This will then in turn remove all of the dirt that has been sitting on the piece for years.
Repurpose Heirlooms As Wall Art
A Family heirloom doesn’t have to be jewellery, it can be anything such as a beautiful platter dish or family china. This can be used to create a beautiful display of wall art. There are many ways in which you can do this. The first is by purchasing adhesive tape which can then go on the walls, obviously making them secure is the pinnacle. The other option is to purchase plate hangers, this method will prevent any damage from forming on the plates and it doesn’t involve attaching anything to the plates.
Use Vintage Materials To Create A Quilt
If you have a selection of vintage materials such as old table covers, flannel, cotton or even silk, then you could actually make a beautiful rag quilt. You could even use vintage handkerchiefs. To start, you will not want to wash them with normal detergent or in a washing machine as this will damage the beautiful materials. There are special cleaning products that will remove the yellow/brown stains from ageing or any other stains, you will be amazed at how well they come out of the wash.
Once clean, you could use a sewing machine or hand sew the materials together to create a beautiful patchwork quilt. If you are not handy with this type of thing, then you can hire a professional to use your beautiful vintage materials to make you a quilt. This is a great option rather than them staying in the attic and getting damaged from dust.
Repurpose Old Costume Jewellery
This one won’t be for everyone but you could make your family heirlooms readily available by making them into different accessories such as hair accessories with your old jewellery or buttons. This isn’t something we would recommend for your more expensive pieces of jewellery but if you have less expensive pieces, then it will work great.
You can do this by getting your old buttons, clip on-earrings or costume jewellery and attaching them to hair clips with superglue. You can then let them dry and put them away for when you next want to do something with your hair. If you don’t have anything like this, then you could always go to a vintage clothing shop and purchase some yourself to do at home.
There are many different types of heirlooms out there and there is always something to do with them. If you have old furniture, you could upholster and repaint it for a brand new look. Rather than buying jewelry, have a lookout for some of your old heirlooms and get to work.