Costume Jewelry Hat, ca. 1950

Value (2013) | $2,000 Auction$3,000 Auction

I made the hat because of the pieces of jewelry that I had inherited from an aunt. And some of them are Eisenberg originals. Some are Kramer. One set is done by Lavender, which was an assistant to Chanel. I had no way of exhibiting them, and I wanted to wear them and show them so that people that collected jewelry would be fascinated by it. I wear it on very special occasions, and I thought today would be a very festive day to wear it. And I really didn't want the hat appraised, but it's ended up that way.

No, I had to look at it closely. I actually wanted to show the viewers a little bit. I'm going to turn you slightly so they can see. This is by Eisenberg and it's an Eisenberg original, which is quite valuable and collectible. And then in the back here, we've got some bird pins. Most of this, of course, is paste jewelry. You're really in the tradition of great hat designers. I'm going to say that what you're wearing on your head is probably worth somewhere around $1,500 to $2,000.


Yes. Do you think that's sufficient for all the work and years of collecting?

(laughing) I can't believe it.

No, I think it's great. And I hope you enjoy wearing the hat.

I do. Thank you.

Appraisal Details

Skinner, Inc.
Boston, MA
Update (2013)
$2,000 Auction$3,000 Auction
Appraised value (1999)
$1,500 Auction$2,000 Auction
Tampa, FL (June 05, 1999)

Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.

Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.

Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.

Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.

Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.

Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.