Learning to Find and Purchase Antiques
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Published by TOP4 Team
Taking up a hobby, like collecting specific items, is an activity favoured by plenty of people across the globe because of the enjoyment it produces and the passion it inspires. The practice could have begun in your life as a simple thing; perhaps when you were young, you liked to collect shells from every beach your family visited, or an older sibling or friend introduced you to the world of comic books and your collection has been growing since then.
In each case, collecting became a pastime because you genuinely liked the items that you were collecting, you enjoyed the process of finding something to add to your growing pile or stack, and sometimes, because you find that your collection has value and can be worth a substantial amount of money. Antique collecting, for instance, is all about being able to find old pieces that remain in impressively good condition and prove valuable in the present.
If you're just starting out on your journey as an antiques collector, here are a few pointers to keep in mind so that you can have much better experiences in finding and purchasing antique pieces.
Study up on the kinds of pieces that you plan to acquire to build your collection. It all starts with sufficient education about the collection you want to put together. Antique collecting is an old practice and it can involve all kinds of items, from furniture found in royal palaces, to paintings, to memorabilia from specific time periods in history, to products manufactured by an old craftsman or tradesman that has long closed up shop. You have to be able to learn why certain things are valuable so that you can develop a good eye for spotting genuine items.
Pick up important lessons from antique dealers. These people will know their items, and the field of antique collecting, inside out, and they can serve as a treasure trove of important information for your hobby or passion. Take time to make conversation with dealers, learn about their own experiences, and ask questions to get some nuggets of wisdom about genuine antique pieces.
Go everywhere. You have to broaden your horizon in terms of the places where you look for prized antique finds. Confining yourself to a single location and a handful of dealers can also limit your chances of making a surprise discovery, so do your research on other places you could visit — or follow your instincts and just set out to explore places where you might chance upon a rare beauty.
Make a plan. On your first year of antique collecting, it may be prudent not to purchase anything yet until you've learned more about the activity and the best ways to spot genuine articles. After you've learned quite a lot, gained some experience from attending auctions, digging through dealers' offerings and going on trips to uncover great sources, decide whether you will collect anything related to the kind of antiques you want to specialise in, or you will only buy pieces that appreciate in value. Also, decide how often you will be buying pieces (one big item per year, or several less pricey ones scattered throughout the year) so you can have a good hold on your money.