Welcome to the NOVA-Antiques Blog

NOVA-Antiques is the Mid Atlantic website for all things antique and collectible. Our website features antique & collectibles dealers, shops & malls; Flea Market Directory & Reviews; Monthly Antiques Show Calendar; Estate & Tag Sales Page; and our NOVA-Antiques Newsletter, which contains news, articles and information about the antiques & collectibles market. NOVA-Antiques Blog is an extension of our Newsletters.

Friday, June 29, 2012

NOVA-Antiques Newsletter Published for July 2012

Following up on my post right before Father’s Day on what to get Dad, I kept thinking more and more about vintage cufflinks.  This led to a couple of the articles in the newly published NOVA-Antiques Newsletter for July 2012.  This edition of the Newsletter contains articles and information including, A Short History of Cufflinks; Authentic or Commemorative Presidential Cufflinks; Widdicomb Furniture; and A Recent Auction of Les Paul Guitars and Memorabilia. 

Additionally, the NOVA-Antiques Newsletter also has information about upcoming antiques shows and flea markets as well as upcoming antiques and collectibles auctions.  Great antique shows coming this month include the Raleigh Antiques Extravaganza, the DC Big Flea, the Middleburg Summer Antiques Fair and the BRAHM AntiqueShow as well as a vintage glass auction and model train auction.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

NOVA-Antiques July Calendar Updates & Venues

The NOVA-Antiques Calendar has been updated and published for July 2012.  This antiques and collectibles calendar of events features shows in the Mid Atlantic region including the Raleigh Antiques Extravaganza, The Christmas in July Doll Show in Trenton, NJ, Art Hamptons, Steel City Con, and the Middleburg Summer Antiques Fair.  Additionally, the calendar contains a preview of an article to be published in our Newsletter this coming Friday.
NOVA-Antiques has also created and published a few more pages in the last few days for some flea markets and farmer’s markets in the area per the request of the owners/operators.  These include the AyaCommunity Market in Washington DC, which will provide a much needed resource for fresh produce in South East DC and the Dumfries Farmer’s Market in Prince William County Virginia.  The new flea market pages are for the Essex Flea Market in Essex, Maryland and the Re-Flea at the Frederick County Fairgrounds in Maryland.
We are always happy to hear from our reading audience and welcome the opportunity to add more pages to our website to get the word out about new antiques and collectibles events and venues.  However, please keep in mind the NOVA-Antiques in my hobby and as such I can only devote a certain amount of time to updating and creating new pages.  I will get to your requests, but it may take a little time.  Thanks for your readership.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Buying

If you are a vintage collectible or antique reseller like me, and if you are reading this you probably are in one way or another, then there is hardly a flea market, yard sale, estate sale or antique market that you can pass without stopping.  In fact, for me, the best part of being a vendor is being the hunter or picker.  I love to go out to find a bargain that I can turn a profit on; and for me the profit doesn’t have to be 100% or 200% . . . any little profit is good because I enjoy the hunt more than the actual selling.
When picking or hunting for antiques or collectibles, there are five questions you should ask yourself:
  1.  Is the item rare?  If a company many hundreds of thousands, then chances are it isn’t rare.  If many were made but were fragile and many broke, they might be rare.  If only a few were made because only certain people could afford it, then it is more likely rare.
  2. Does it look nice? Is it aesthetically pleasing?  This is one of the more objective questions because “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”  However, you can still make a judgment call when you tie this question in to the next.
  3. Would anybody else want it?  I made a bet with my niece one time because I bought at auction what she thought was a most hideous wall hanging ever.  She thought I would never be able to resell it.  It was the very first thing that I sold at my shop the next day.  My niece was flabbergasted.
  4. Is it real?  Sometimes this is the one that gets even the experts.  There are many commemorative, replica or outright fake items on the market.  Anything from cookie jars to cufflinks can be faked.  Many unscrupulous sellers will not tell you when they are replicas or fakes.  Caveat Emptor always applies.  Can the seller provide proof that the item is the real deal?
  5. Is the item in good condition?  Keep in mind that since the items are antique or vintage, they should absolutely not look “new.”  If they do look “new,” they could be fakes.  On the other hand, a beautiful vintage Murano glass bowl is not so appealing to others if it has a large chip or crack running through it.  

Friday, June 22, 2012

Upcoming Antique Events for June 22-24, 2012

Tonight, June 22, 2012 at Hayes BrothersAuctions of Front Royal, Virginia will be holding an antiques and collectibles auction.  Included in this auction are old house and barn parts, barn lanterns, toy trains, painted tables and old magazines and photos.  One of the nice things about this auction house is no buyer’s premium.
One of the best antique shows this weekend will take place in Arlington, Virginia at the Thomas Jefferson Community Center.  The Northern Virginia Antiques Show attracts about 100 quality dealers and features period furniture, antique porcelain and china, glass and many other vintage collectibles.  This Show is sponsored by the Kiwanis Club or Arlington.

This is also the weekend for the Tiffin Glass Collectors Show and Sale in where else?  Tiffin, Ohio.  This show and sale is held at the Glass Museum which houses thousands of pieces of glass and memorabilia from the Tiffin factory.  Dealers will be on hand to show and sell many examples of this fine vintage elegant glass.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

One More Future Collectible

In the past I have written about what might collectible in the future, because that is a question I get a lot.  People want to know what might be cheap today, but valuable say in 40-50 years.  It is always a difficult question, but one that I always answer with, “Do not buy things that were made for collectors.  buy things that are functional items today but may become rare items in the future.  I gave one example recently about a Leica camera that sold for a bunch of money at an auction. 

This past week, we saw the sale at Sotheby’s Auction of a 1976 Apple I computer.  It was less than 40 years old and brought in more than $374,000.  Now, don’t run out and buy a computer to keep for the future, as not all will be this valuable.  What makes this one worth more money?  Rarity, plain and simple.  In 1976 only about 200 of these Apple I computers were made by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.  Additionally, this rare model still worked when it was auctioned off.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Nostalgic and Beautiful Hood Ornaments

As has become a tradition in our family, we made our annual trip to the Historic Sully Plantation Father’s Day Car Show.  And as we have quickly learned over the past few years, this is one show that never disappoints.  The weather was great, lots of sunshine and not  a lot of humidity; many friendly people anxious to talk about their classics; and the cars themselves are just amazing to see.  Aside from the cars themselves though, I am also a fanatic of the old hood ornaments that adorn these old classics. 

Originally, these hood ornaments had a purpose; to hide the ugly piece of functional equipment called a radiator cap.  In the early years, cars had a motometer on the gas cap, which told the driver the temperature of the engine.  Later, when the temperature guage was moved inside to the dashboard, what was left was an ugly radiator cap that needed to be “prettied up.”  And thus, the hood ornament or a mascot as they are called in England, was born.

Hood ornaments, used from the 1920s to the 1950s, came in a variety of shapes and sizes.  From flying ducks to Goddesses and archers.  In the past, these hood ornaments were very elaborately done and designers and artists, such as Rene Lalique, were commissioned to produce some of the most beautiful examples.  Many were and still are associated to certain car models.  As an example, the British Jaguar automobile has a very distinct hood ornament; of course a jaguar.  This like the others has become quite a collectors’ item.

There are many people, like me, that are fascinated by these wonderful and nostalgic pieces of art.  Many collectors will pay top price for rare and hard to find hood ornaments.  A bronze ArtDeco hood ornament in the shape of a bison and signed by Alfredo Biagini recently sold on eBay for over $2000.  Lalique hood ornaments command record prices upwards of $200,000.  More common hood ornaments, which are easy to find sell for $50 to $150.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Great Antique Shows & Events This Weekend

Don’t know if there will be many antiques and collectibles at this event but it is for a good cause and you never know what you may find.  Eagle View Elementary School at 4500 DixieHill Road in Fairfax will hold a parking lot yard sale on Saturday June 16, 2012 from 8 am until 12 pm.  In addition to the loads of donated items they will have for sale, they will also be selling baked goods, soda and water.  Proceeds of this sale benefit the school library.

If you’re up for an adventure, the annual Main Street Antique Show will take place this Saturday as well.  This antique show is held in Historic Downtown in Hendersonville, North Carolina.  The Main Street Antique Show features antique furniture, pottery, china, jewelry and other vintage collectibles as well as country furniture.

If you are into antique and vintage cars, then the place to be on Sunday June 17, 2012 is at the Historic Sully Plantation in Chantilly Virginia for the annual Father’sDay Sully Antique Car ShowIn our family, it has become a tradition for my youngest son and I to attend this great show to reminisce about the times in our lives.  We love to look and take pictures at one of the largest gathering of antique, classic and vintage cars.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What To Get Dad for Father’s Day

Many times my children, like most children will ask what I would want for Father’s Day.  In most cases, I tell them, “you really don’t have to buy me anything.”  Let’s face it in today’s economy most people, including one’s own children do not have a lot of disposable income.  But if you wanted and could afford a little something for dear old Dad, make is something unique but recycled.  Recycled? If you were buying something for me, I would prefer something old, antique or vintage.

There are many things that you can buy at antique shows, estate sales or even flea markets that fit that bill; unique, vintage or old, and more importantly recycled.  One example might be sports memorabilia.  If Dad is into sports, a nice old vintage jersey from one of his favorite players or even a piece of a stadium or arena.  A couple of years ago, my youngest son, bought me a brick from the torn down Buffalo Memorial Auditorium.  That piece of rock has a lot sentimental and wistful value; I took both my late father and my son there for sporting events.

Another thing that fathers like are old tools.  Antique planes, vintage hand saws and drills as well as chisels, files and knives are all favorites with nostalgic value.  I have seen men run through an opening at an estate sale just be the first in the garage to get a look at the vast array of old tools.  Many comb through flea markets and yard sales in search of an old square, hammer or level, just like their Dad used to own and work with.

If Dad is not a sports fan and doesn’t like memorabilia or does not get misty eyed at the site of an old rule, you might be better off buying him a vintage set of cufflinks.  Personally, I don’t wear cufflinks, but I have always had a fascination with them.  Whenever I go to a flea market or antique show and I see them, I have to stop and look.  There are so many kinds; colorful, with stones, gold, silver, embossed, presidential, military and whimsical.  It seems there are cufflinks for every occasion.  Although I don’t wear them now, if someone bought me antique cufflinks for Father’s day, I would probably buy the shirts to wear them with. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Outasite!! News

This past week we updated two of our sites, Outasite!! Antiques and Outasite!! Auctions.  Both were given fresh new looks and updated with information that we received from our clients and friends.  Although they are both still part of the NOVA-Antiques.com family, they are now hosted on their own.  This will allow search engines and people in general to find our pages quicker and easier.
Outasite!! Antiques focuses on antique shops and malls located in the Mid-Atlantic region.  The homepage carries news and information about antiques and collectibles.  The website also breaks down the antique malls, shops and stores by state in the Mid-Atlantic region.  Lastly, Outasite!! Antiques has a webpage dedicated to consignment shops.  This webpage currently has information about stores in the Washington DC, Northern Virginia metro area but we will expand it this year to include others.

The Outasite!! Auctions is a website dedicated to providing information about auctioneers and auction houses in the Mid-Atlantic region.  The homepage for this site contains information about recent record prices at the action houses.  It also contains webpages featuring antiques and collectible, estate and household auction companies by state.  In the near future, as we continue to expand our Internet presence, we will be adding a webpage on the Outasite!! Auctions website that focuses on online auctions.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Antique Shows & Event for June 8-10, 2012

In my last NOVA-Antiques Newsletter I wrote a little piece about desks as an antique and it really was more of as short history on desks and their design.  As I have come to find out in my everyday life, I can never have enough desk space. 
Seems everything I am working on lands on my desk, whether it is bills that I am paying, pictures I am scanning or my iPod when I downloading music.  The more I clean off my desk, the more junk lands on it.  If you are like me, and I suspect most people are, then you might need more desk space and what better value than to recycle a vintage or antique desk.

Some shows and events that you might find antique desks at this weekend include the June Festival of Antiques in Mullica Hill, New Jersey.  This show which will be held on Saturday June 9, 2012 attracts over fifty dealers and thousands of people.  The June Festival of Antiques features antique furniture, vintage glass, pottery, jewelry and artwork as well as antique lighting and vintage toys.

If you are in the Washington DC metro area, you might want to check out the Gaithersburg Antique &Collectibles Show at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds.  This antique show has been around for a long time and hundreds of dealers selling ephemera, memorabilia, vintage collectibles and glass as well as antique furniture and d├ęcor.  This show will be held on Saturday and Sunday, June 9-10, 2012 and attracts thousands of visitors and is a nice way to get nostalgic.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Collectibles As An Investment

Do you have a curio cabinet full of Hummel or precious moment figurines?  If you do, you are not alone.  Many people in the 70s, 80s and 90s started collecting them and were paying a lot of money for them.  Today, unfortunately, they are only worth a percentage of what people paid back then.  Hummel figurines that were going for $200-$300 back in their heyday are now bringing in $50-100 if you are lucky.  The same holds true for many other collectibles and the reason is simple, they were made to be collected.
Most collectibles that are made specifically for collecting purposes are a fad.  People become interested in collecting them, build a huge collection and then most people lose interest.  Such is the way with Beanie Babies, cabbage patch dolls and gum cards.  In the 1960s gum cards were imprinted with photos of the Beatles and an “autograph signature.”  Everything Beatles is collectible right?  You are lucky if you can get a buck or two for the cards in today’s market.

In today’s market, what is selling are collectibles that were not made specifically for collecting, but had a functional and specific purpose.  Some examples are coins or stamps, which had a specific use.  In our recent NOVA-Antiques Newsletter, we wrote about a Leica camera that sold at a record auction price; other things that can bring in top dollar include memorabilia, such as Elvis’ jumpsuit or Michael Jackson’s glove.  These things were not only functional but due to the fact that they were not mass produced, they are rare.

So if you have some extra money, not many of us do in this economy, and you want to invest in collectibles, what is the best bet?  The best bet is to stay away from the mass produced collectibles: Hummels; prints from Thomas Kincaid; and Pokeman cards are probably not good investments.  Memorabilia, especially autographed items; political or historical objects or even vintage automobile hood ornaments are probably good investments.

Monday, June 4, 2012

NOVA-Antiques Newsletter & Calendar Updates

On Friday this past week we posted a new edition of the NOVA-Antiques Newsletter.  In this edition of the newsletter, you will find articles about Vintage Radios Appealing to the New Collectors; A Short History of Emerson Radio; The Desk as an Antique; and Zing Zing – Vintage straight razors.  Additionally, the newsletter contains information about a recent auction price for a Leica camera as well as upcoming auctions, antique shows, flea markets and much more.

Additionally, we updated the June AntiquesShow Calendar with dates and information for many shows in the Mid Atlantic region.  Coming up this month, the shows include the Richmond Antiques Spectacular; Sully’s Annual Father’s Day Antique Car Show; The Summer Antiques Extravaganza in Adamstown Pennsylvania; The Tiffin Collectors Annual Show; and the Fabulous Finds Barn Sale in Vienna Virginia as well as the International Petroliana Collectors Show.