Owner Interview: English Woven Gold Snake Bracelet, ca. 1875
It's a family heirloom, so frankly you could tell me it's worth a million dollars and it wouldn't make a darn bit of difference to me.
Not quite. But how about $25,000 or $27,000 retail?
It's an honor to be on Antiques Roadshow and it's wonderful and I'm very, very pleased.
It had been lost in the house for many, many, many years. And when we were cleaning out the house, we actually found it. My mom, in her early days, was fashionable to the hilt. Perfect hair and perfect shoes, everything. Everything matched. You know, she was an arts major in college so she was big on colors and doing everything. So, she was always absolutely perfect. She had some older watches that belonged to my father and stuff but sadly the were sent to a jeweler on consignment and the jeweler went bankrupt, and so all that stuff went out the window. And I was very, very, very depressed and angry about that. But you know, you gotta move on. One question I did ask off camera was what was it worth back in the 1940s when my dad acquired it? And he wasn't for sure but he said about he thought $2,500 to $3,500. So from the 1940s to now, it appreciated from $2,500 to $25,000 which is pretty good. INTERVIEWER: Do you plan to have the sapphire tested?
No. Since I have no reason to sell it or get rid of it, it is what it is. It means everything for me to bring the bracelet here. I would never sell it or let it go ever.
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.