Monday, 22 August 2011


My current bout of depression has again got me thinking about my attitude towards work even though I normally love my busy, rewarding and intellectually challenging job as an occupational therapist in a NHS mental health team. I wrote over a year ago vaguely on the concept of retirement. Then, I pondered over developing interests that have the air of hobbies rather than jobs and could potentially be financially productive, even into the later years of my life.   With the increasing levels of stress that full-time public sector employment brings, I wonder if the need for this diversification may come sooner than I'd originally intended. 

All those auction type programmes on the BBC are working their dubious magic and I've been asking myself if there is any profit that I could make in wheeling and dealing. Now, I'm not thinking about making a fast buck but, over time, developing a bit of knowledge about the antiques market, and with that, some idea about what purchases represent good value for money and could be sold on at a respectable profit.

 So, I've been spending some of my time whilst off sick doing a bit of research and scratching the surface of learning about the vintage jewellery market and playing with some of the items that I've bought on Ebay.  I've acquired a little magnifying glass, a louche as it's known to us experts darlings, and have to say that the detective work surrounding identifying maker's marks and hallmarks is fascinating.  All the legal aspects hold my interest too.  There's also my precious metal testing kit, impressively scary looking, with its skull and crossbones on its locking(!) box with threats about how the chemicals can take the jubblies off rats at a thousand paces.  This example here is clearly an old plated item as you can see from the gold coloured metal showing through but the test for 9ct gold gave a satisfying bubbling hissing reaction that shows that I've haven't made my fortune on this piece and the base metal is most likely to be copper!

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