Are defined as objects which are 100 years or older, with the exception of cars, which have to be 20 years or older.
Learn to recognize the periods and styles of furniture, and accessories.
Frequent museum, and antiques shophelp train the eye to recognize valuable pieces.
Invest in a price guide on the objects in which you are interested in collecting. Remember it is just a guide and may not represent what an item will sale for in your location.
Also learn to recognize porcelain and pottery marks and signatures.
There are books available to aid in this process.
Be aware of reproductions, and fakes. Some fakers even try to replicate marks and signatures.
When looking at furniture make sure it is real wood throughout piece. Pull out drawers, check back of piece to make sure it is also solid wood.
It is best to buy original works of art instead of prints. Original signatures are always best.
On the occasions when you buy do prints, be sure to look for pieces that are signed and numbered.
Try to familiarize yourself with popular artist both alive and dead. Take a look at the framing. Antiques frames can be worth a lot of money.
Good quality frames are often expensive. Look for fine art, folk art, pop art or outside art. Most importantly make sure it is something you love whether valuable or not.
Visit art galleries, and museums for inspiration. This will help you to train your eye.
Sometimes you can buy natural art and original paintings from unknown and amateur artists.
Even things not originally intended for art can become works of art. Look for art in various medium; glass, ceramics, oils, watercolors, charcoal, textiles, etchings, and lithographs to name a few.
Look for titles of interest. Best sellers maybe a good choice. If looking to collect or sale,
look for first editions. Signed or autographed copies by the author are always a good choice. Condition is also very important. Look for torn pages, marks, and missing pages.
Most thrift stores and sometimes estate sales or garage sales will have book
arranged by subject matter. Religious, nonfiction, fiction, Crafts, Cooking, Health
and Beauty, Travel and to Textbooks can all be found second hand.
If a budding collector you may want to pick up a book on collectible books.
Look for well- made and sometimes well- known designers. I say this loosely because sometimes the labels will be missing, or the designer will be unknown to you but the clothes are high quality. Look for quality fabrics , finished seams, and extra details.
Look for quality labels, they are often present with quality designer clothes. They are generally woven and may have a chain heading from them.
It is good to know the names of some of the most popular designers and be able to recognize them, but when the name on the label is unknown to you there are several things you look at to help you determine if the piece is a quality piece.
The quality clothing usually have woven labels. The presence of chains around the label is also an indication of quality. The Color,Texture and weight of fabric are also important. Check out seams, hems, and signs of wear.
Look for stains, tears, pulls and rips. If buttons are present look for metal, mother of pearl, leather , ivory, horn and other fine materials. The overall condition of the piece should be good if using as it exists.
Frequent department stores, boutiques, look in magazines, at fashion shows, museums and any other place which offer a peak at beautiful and well -made clothes. At department stores and boutiques you can check out prices that way you know when you are getting a good deal.
If you have a cell phone with internet access you can always to a search for that designer when the label is present and check out their prices online. When finding pieces that maybe not in best shape think about ways to recycle or upcycle. You can always find new uses for great pieces.
Just Remember Quality Counts!! Quality Counts!!It aways Counts!! It will last longer, look better, and be able to be resold at a later date.
When buying belts look for genuine leather. Or if looking for metal make sure the belt has a little weight to it. The buckle should be made of solid metal such as brass, chrome, pewter, or precious metal such as silver. Most f the time the buckle will say solid brass. In the case of silver it will say sterling or 925. The belt is often stitched and not glued together. It may even contain semi precious stones such as turquoise. The holes in the belt should be neat and not worn.
Also look for obvious signs of wear and the future longevity. Genuine Alligator, Crocodile, and snakeskin are usually very durable. These can also be every good finds.
Do not forget to look for belts made by good designers which may also make handbags.
Be sure to try on the hat to make sure it fits well. Check out the material used to make the hat. Fine felt hats will be made for wool or some blend most of the time. Straw hats with be made from straw and generally speaking the tighter the weave the better the hat.
As always look for the woven label and for some of the most popular designers.
Condition is important of course . Look for stains, tears and rips. Make sure it fits your overall personality and style.
Fine quality bags will be made up of great materials. The hardware should be real good and not cheap. It should be made of solid quality metals. These bags are often made of the finest of leather which will soften and mellow with time.
As in belts, the straps should be stitched and not glued. Look for good quality labels whether woven, leather or some other great material.
Fabric , beaded and sequined bags should exemplify superb workmanship. Great bags are often lined with quality fabrics.
A list of great designers is always a plus. These same designer will often make shoes as well.
Visit department stores, and boutiques to look at some of these bags for comparison.
A well -made bag will give you many years of service.
Try them on. Wear thin sock or bring a knee stocking to slip on when trying on shoes.
Make sure they fit. Check out condition. They should not be too worn. They should be of good quality whether it is leather of some other material. Take a look at the soles. They always indicate wear and quality . High quality shoes will have a leather sole .The finest shoes will have the entire shoes made of leather.
Check labels. Know your popular designers brands. When in doubt do an internet search. Frequent department and boutiques to gain additional knowledge of these designers. Try the shoes on see how they feel. This will be important when shopping for shoes.
A collectible is anything that is collected. It can be 1 days old as well as 20 years old.
The most common ones include art pottery, porcelain, glassware, records, albums, books, newspapers, magazines, china, dolls, toys, linens and textiles, fishing, stamps, and coins.
Be familiar with the most popular ones.
Pick up a price guide to get acquainted with the selling prices and the most popular names for many of these.
When looking at china, look for popular designers. The dishes will usually have a mark or signature under each piece. When you hold a fine piece of porcelain china in your hold it up to the light and you should be able to see your fingers through it. This is a good sign of a good piece. There are books available with have marks and signature of the most popular pieces.
Higher end pieces of glassware will be signed under the bottom of the glass by the maker.When trying to determine real crystal from ordinary glassware then thump it with your finger lightly and you should hear bell tones. They should be clear when you look at them. There are several books on collectible glassware.
Flatware and Hollowware
Be on the lookout for both silver plate and sterling silver. Be able to recognize the
difference between silver plate, Sterling, Stainless Steel and Pewter. Sterling Silver will have the words Sterling, Hallmarks, or maybe 925 stamped on it. Silver plate will not have sterling written on them, but may have ENP, EP or some reference to silver plate listed on them. Stainless will sometimes have stainless written on it. Pewter may not be signed. Take a look at these metals so that you will begin to recognize them.
Look for solid wood throughout the article you are looking at. For example if
looking at a dresser look at the front and back of the dresser. Pull out the drawers make
sure there is no glue or staples present. Wood should be in the back , bottom, front and two sides of the drawer.There should not be any particle board present. All parts should be original to the piece. There should not be any missing parts. If refinished it should be
a good job. The learn about the periods and styles of furniture pick up a book on
furniture periods and styles. Buy the best you can buy. Think of these pieces as an investment. Quality furniture will last a lifetime. It usually goes up in value.
maybe possible that you can resale some on these finds. Be ready to think of new
and exciting ways you can combine quality pieces whether old, vintage or new your
Kitchenware can range for today’s popular style to many vintage styles.
Visit department stores to check some of today’s popular cookware choices and prices.
Plug up small kitchen appliances before buying to make sure they work. Ask if there are any warranties and for how long? Buy brands which have proven performance. You can also find flatware, storage ware and other kitchen utensils.
When shopping for both fine and costume jewelry. It is important to be able to recognize metal content signatures and marks. There are many popular designers in each realm.
Sterling silver is often stamped 925, sterling, 800, or may have small hallmarks. Hallmarks are small stamps used by maker to mark their work and metal content. There are books and pocket guides which have these listed.
Platinum will have the word Plat, or 950 on it.
Gold carats maybe indicated as follows 14k or 585
18 k or 750
9k or 375
22k or 916
The higher the carat the softer the metal.
These are just starting points beware there are fakers who often fake pieces.
There are many collectible costume pieces of jewelry that maybe as young s 20 years old and as old as 100 or more. Checkout a book on costume jewelry to get to know some of the names and marks.
The best rugs are handmade and made of 100% wool or silk. The are Oriental Rugs and offer a variety of patterns colors shapes and sizes. The pattern will look the same on the front of the as on the back, Usually the tighter the weave the better the rugs. Many are new but the most valuable ones can be as old as 100 plus years old. A very high quality and thought by many to the highest quality machine-made rugs are called Karastan. These are beautiful rugs as well. Be sure to have an idea of room measurements when looking at these rugs. They usually come in standard sizes.
The best sheets are 100% supima or Egyptian cotton. They will boast several plys.
Generally,the higher the thread count the softer and better the sheet.
Thread counts can range from 200 to over 1000.
Look for handmade quilts, bedspreads, tablecloths, aprons, dollies, and pillowcases.
These will often feature hand-embroidery, crochet or knitting. Overall condition is important. Some stains can be removed. If not in good shape think of ways to reuse pieces and parts. Vintage fabrics can prove to be a good find. They can be used to add to or make garments and for decorative use around the house.
Why thrift style living or shopping?
Tricks of the Trade
How do I become a savvy thrift store shopper?
What department do you go to first after going into the store?
Shoes and Clothing
General Household, Furniture