♡ Delivery from 6€ worldwide ♡ - A scrunchy offered for any purchase of 30€ and more!

How to recognize bakelite jewelry?

Bakelite is a type of plastic commonly used in vintage jewelry from the 1920s to the 1950s. It was commonly used in making beads, bracelets, brooches, and other jewelry. Today, Bakelite jewelry is considered collectible and can be very valuable. However, not all vintage jewelry is made of bakelite, so knowing how to recognize it is essential.

Here are some ways to recognize bakelite in vintage jewelry:

1 Perform a “smell test”: Bakelite has a distinct odor that can be described as a slightly sweet smell, similar to formaldehyde. If you suspect a vintage piece of jewelry is Bakelite, you can try rubbing it vigorously with your fingers to create friction and heat, which may release the smell.

2 Check the weight: Bakelite is heavier than most other plastics used in jewelry making. If a piece of jewelry seems surprisingly heavy, it may be Bakelite.

3 Perform a “hot water” test: Dip a cotton swab in hot water and rub it against a hidden or inconspicuous area of ​​the jewelry. If the cotton swab turns yellow, it is likely that the part is Bakelite. Bakelite is a thermosetting plastic, meaning it hardens irreversibly when heated, causing it to release a yellowish-brown color.

4 Look for mold lines: Bakelite is usually molded and therefore will have visible mold lines on the surface of the jewelry. These lines may be more prominent at the edges of the part.

5 Check the color: Bakelite was produced in a wide range of colors, but some are more common than others. Black, brown, and cream are the most common colors for Bakelite jewelry, but they have also been produced in shades of red, green, blue, and other colors. Bakelite can be translucent or opaque, and it often has a mottled or swirled appearance.

In conclusion, recognizing bakelite in vintage jewelry can be difficult, but by paying attention to the color, texture, smell, and other characteristics of the material, you can become more confident in identifying it. By following these tips, you will be better equipped to spot Bakelite jewelry and add it to your collection.