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.

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.  

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