I have an Ida Maria Grassi Prestige Model flute. It has a sterling embrochure and is marked as model number 1900. My husband bought it for me to encourage me to return to playing the flute. He thinks it's cool because its european.
It needs new pads at least. Is it worth overhauling or should I look into buying new?
That really depends on how much you were planning to shell out for an overhaul. A top tier tech doing an overhaul can easily cost $800+ dollars, which is far beyond the value of the instrument, but if you have a local repair guy who is capable but cheap (though too cheap, and you risk shoddy workmanship), then it might make sense to have it overhauled. Most Grassi flutes that I've seen sell in the 100-300 USD range, depending on condition, so if the cost of the instrument plus the cost of an overhaul exceeds that range, financially it doesn't make much sense to have it done. Of course, you have to factor in any special attachment you might have since it was a gift from your husband, etc. and if you feel it's worth it to have it overhauled, then there's no harm in doing so, and it more than likely will serve you well until you're ready to upgrade. It's perfectly possible to find a used student flute from a reputable company in playing condition for just a couple hundred bucks, so buying a different flute certainly wouldn't be out of the question if that's the route you choose. In the end, you'll have to weigh the various factors and decide what makes the most sense for you, in your particular situation.