Some Filipinos have an aversion to wearing old jewelry especially if they don’t know who wore it before. I heard that some believe that if the person who previously owned the jewelry had violent tendencies, then the next person who wears it will be like that too. How strange. It’s funny though. Oh, if they only knew where some of the “new” jewelry they buy in retail shops come from. We, Filipinos love to buy jewelry. Not only it is a good investment but when times are hard, it can easily be converted to cash. Some do this by going to pawnshops. Just look around in the Philippines, there’s always a pawnshop near you.
But what happens if you can’t redeem what you pawned due to lack of cash? Well, the pawnshop includes it in their items for auction or locally referred to as “subasta”. The pawnshops put them in lots according to their value. These lots are then auctioned off to jewelry dealers or volume buyers. When I say “volume buyers”, I mean jewelry dealers with deep pockets! The dealer can either melt the gold, separate the gemstones or sell the items “as is” to retail jewelry shops. The melted gold will be made into new jewelry while the loose gemstones will be resold and reset into new designs. Those that are sold “as is” are repaired and cleaned up to look new. Then they get sold as new stocks again. Now, as a person who likes to recycle, I love this practice. But to someone who might be opposed to wearing something old, well, your “new” jewelry might not be what it’s cracked up to be.