FAQ

Holidays are upon us!

With Christmas and New Year’s Eve both falling on weekends this year, we had to put on our thinking caps to figure out how best to balance the needs of our customers and some hard earned time off for our staff. We now have a plan.
OPEN A LITTLE Christmas Eve, only from 11 till 1:00pm
CLOSED Christmas day
CLOSED Monday 12/26
OPEN 12/27, 28 & 29
CLOSED Friday 12/30, Saturday 12/31 and Sunday 1/1
We hope these hours will give you a chance to spend time with us and with your family. We will do the same!

A New Useful Thing!

You have questions? We have answers. Just visit our new FAQ section (find it in “about us”). Learn about layaway, caring for your jewelry, appointments, exchanges, where we get our stuff, and so much more! You can even find out when Nina’s Baby is due, and learn more about our Ned.

our “featured” section

Have you visited our “featured” section lately? Here’s how it works…
-As new pieces arrive, we choose some of them to feature on the web. We try to get an interesting and diverse variety of rings up there, but by no means is the list complete! There is a lot more to choose from here in the shop
–We name all of our featured rings because it makes it easy to communicate about them, and because it’s fun! Names are inspired by the rings themselves. Every once in a while we post a picture and open the floor to name suggestions from all of you on our facebook page… also fun!
–When a ring sells, we mark it sold on the site, but leave it up for a few weeks, just so people can have one last look.
–You can always contact us to inquire about other pieces we may have, and once we narrow down what you are looking for, we can usually send you some pictures of things that might work for you.
–Because most folks searching online for antique jewelry seem to be looking for rings, and because we specialize in them, that is what we mostly post, but remember, we have lots of earrings, pendants and bracelets too… just drop us a line with inquiries.

Summer jewelry care

July fourth did it again. Like flipping a switch, summer is now in full, glorious bloom here in Portland. Since we have the best interest of your jewelry at heart, we offer this little guide to how to keep your favorite pieces “summer safe”. We recommend you keep the following in mind. Giving your jewelry a vacation from certain activities will go a long way!

1) Everyone loves the pool, but chlorinated water can be quite harmful to pearls, opals, emeralds, enamel, turquoise, lapis, or any color enhanced stone, leaching out color and etching the surface.

2) The beach presents several challenges. Sand is abrasive and will quickly take the shine off gold, silver or platinum. If you are digging in it, it can get wedged between stones and settings, loosening them. It will also scratch some softer stones. Salt water is not good for opals, and the chemicals in sunscreen can be bad for all the tender stones listed in the chlorine section above. Another concern, the chilly water here in Oregon shrinks your fingers. When combined with slippery sunscreen, rings can fall off on the waves.

3) Active sports, like white water rafting, rock climbing and windsurfing can be very tough on your jewelry. Besides the possibility of being badly banged up, the strong gripping action in all these sports can cause rings to torque (yes, even through gloves) which can snap metalwork and loosen stones.

4) Natural hot springs, often rich in sulfur, can wreak havoc, especially with silver jewelry, which can turn black within seconds. The soup of dissolved minerals reacts in unpredictable ways with lots of other materials too.

5) Lastly, an obscure gem fact that is fun, but will only be useful to about 0.1% of you. Kunzite, a lovely pale pink variety of spudomene, will fade in strong sunlight. It should only be worn in the evening, and stored in a dark place.

So while your jewelry is best left safely at home during your busiest summer days, Please remember to put it back on for festive summer evenings. Your rings simply LOVE to go out for chilled summer cocktails!

Spring cleaning

Today a woman came into the shop with a bracelet that looked just awful. The finish on the metal was dull, there was no patina in the recessed parts, the amethyst was frosty and abraded. She had recently inherited the bracelet from an aunt, and that aunt, alas, had gotten it into her head that the proper way to clean her jewelry was to mix some vinegar into hot water, and then boil the jewelry thoroughly.

We also had a client come in who had lost a small stone from her ring (she found it).  She was in the habit of cleaning dirt out from behind the stones in her ring with a straight pin.

Please don’t do that.

People are always amazed at how much a quick, complimentary trip to “Maloy’s Spa” improves their jewelry, so we thought we would share the home version of our cleaning technique. This will work for platinum, white and yellow gold, and silver. Diamonds, sapphires, and most semi precious stones. This is NOT appropriate for jewelry with pearls, opals, emeralds, rhinestones, or any jewelry with glue involved.

Add about 2 tablespoons of Mr. Clean (or any ammonia/ soap based kitchen cleaner without bleach) to about a half cup of hot tap water. Drop your ring(s) in and let them soak till the water gets cool, 15 or 20 minutes. Then scrub the ring outside and especially inside with a soft clean toothbrush. You want to massage away the dirt gently with the bristles, paying special attention to the backs of the stones. Rinse well, and blot dry on a smooth cloth (not a towel, which can snag and pull prongs.

Thats all! No need to waste money on jars of “jewelry cleaner” or ineffective home ultrasonic machines. Of course, do be sure to come in from time to time for the full spa treatment here at the store, but the home version is great for in between times!

FAQ- Layaway

Well, the holidays are coming up, and lots of people are eyeing the lovelies in our cases and asking the perennial question …”do you do layaway?” And the answer is, yes.

In order to insure that the special person on your list finds something truly fabulous in the box, we offer the simplest layaway policy we could think of. It works like this-
1) Once you find “the” piece, you put a deposit down on it. We prefer 33%, but we can sometimes be flexible if needed.
2) Our terms could not be easier. We do not charge any interest or extra layaway fees. You simply make payments on your item at your convenience. You can come into the shop and make payments, or authorize a weekly or monthly credit card payment, or you can send checks in the mail, whatever works for you best. We do ask that the item be paid in full within about 3 months.
3) When the item is paid for in full, you get to take it home. Ring purchases include one complimentary sizing, and items over $1000 include a complimentary appraisal for your insurance company… just request one!

We hear that our layaway policy has helped many folks stay on budget while still getting maximum wow factor out of the holiday, and the time to get started is now. Come visit

From the Archives… Gold Selling 101

With gold prices hitting record highs (again). We thought we’d take a moment tore run a post from last year demystifying the process for you…
Gold is a commodity, and the base value of any piece of jewelry starts with the value of the precious material – metal and stones that it is made from – with some special pieces, there are additional layers of value added- rarity, exceptional craftsmanship and antique value sometimes come into play.
We are in a time of financial upheaval and resettling. Metal prices are volatile, household incomes are volatile. As a result, many jewelry shops are offering gold buying services as a way for people to turn their unwanted jewelry into needed cash. In the process of determining a bid, there are several steps that should ALWAYS be taken.
1) The gold content of your pieces should be individually tested. 14 karat gold is 58.5% pure gold, with the balance being other metals that are alloyed with the gold in order to improve durability, alter the color (to white or rose gold, for example), and also to decrease the manufacturing cost of the item. 18k is 75% pure gold, and 10k is only 41.6% pure. This is one reason an ounce of jewelry will not get a scrap bid equivalent to the price of an ounce of gold… that second number is for an ounce of pure refined material.
2) Once your pieces have been tested and grouped by karat (gold content), they should be weighed. Some jewelers use ounces, some prefer pennyweights (one twentieth of an ounce), some use grams. These are all matters of personal preference, and are all equally accurate systems.
3) Using the above steps, the actual amount of pure gold in your items is calculated. If you are considering selling some scrap items to a dealer who does not use a scale and calculator, you should take your items and leave.
Now for the trickier parts. Gold needs to be refined before it can be reused. Refining costs money, and those fees are subtracted from your bid. Testing, weighing, and calculating takes an employee’s time, that is also factored into the bid. Now for the trickiest part. By Oregon law, scrap purchases need to be held for 30 days before refining, and refining itself takes time. Who knows what direction gold prices will move over the next several weeks? Reputable jewelers are going to build a cushion into their bid to help ameliorate the gambling element inherent in such a transaction! As mentioned above, this is a service we are providing, and as a business, we can’t afford to loose money every time we provide it.
Yes, this is a way we make a little money too, but not a lot. What is so scary, and making headlines, is that some businesses are bidding so little for your gold, that when you question the bid, they have room to automatically double it! Others are offering coupons for 20% “higher” bids… You shouldn’t need a coupon to get a fair price for your gold.