I have many friends who are collectors & antique dealers & even though I am not directly involved in this business I am quite an avid buyer of unique old pieces myself. I quite envy other people's willpower for once I get hold of something that cannot be replicated I won't even think of letting it go. So I routinely disappoint my clients when/if they spot a piece that I wear and want to 'strip it off' me: uniqueness is not for sale.
It is, of course. The design of my pieces, modesty aside, is already quite unique. But my antique collector wannabe side is making the separation with what I hunted down or simply happened upon absolutely impossible.
Since the antique pieces stay in the 'family' (the only other person to whom I can generously give away some pieces is my mother - on the condition that I might borrow it at any time, so as you see it's not a total 100% separation), I like to invent flexible uses for them, so that the same piece could embellish various necklaces, rings or brooches.
Like these 2 antique parrots on the photo above, which paired up nicely with 2 Goya's women (it looks like they're gossiping or plotting).
It is a beautiful piece in itself, the parrots, that is, but these days I can't afford to simply put someone else's piece on & go out like that.
Uniqueness might not be for sale, but incorporating it with something I did makes me sell what I do, so there's always a way around the rules you set for yourself...