An appreciation of ethnic jewellery and adornment
1. Unless you really know this type of jewellery and are satisfied with what you consider a bargain price, do not buy from a salesman or establishment that doesn’t guarantee in writing the quality and authenticity, of the jewellery.
2. Whenever possible, ask for an official document proving the country of origin (customs export document, old local photographs) or a certificate of authenticity.
3. When purchasing from a store, ask the salesperson if there are any catalogues or books making reference to this specific piece of jewellery or any other piece of jewellery that is similar in order to further establish its authenticity and history. Do not hesitate to ask for photocopies from these publications.
4. Avoid buying from private individuals you do not know who might be trading in counterfeit goods
5. The weight of the piece of jewellery or its colour does not attest to the quality of the material of which it is made.
6. Take time for reflection and do not hesitate to ask as many questions as you want to about your potential purchase. Be cautious if the person you are buying from cannot adequately answer your questions.
7. The age of an ethnic jewel is determined by various criteria such as patina, type of enamel colour used, seals etc. Do not trust merchants who give you too precise a date on this kind of jewellery.