What are some things to remember to help pick out a vintage item instead of a reproduction?

We have all been there before at some point—you find an item that you are looking for, and it has a price that you can afford.  The only problem is is that it’s a reproduction.  What are some tips that you can use to help you identify a real item instead a reproduction?

The first thing to remember is that age and wear can be faked.  One example is that linens can be soaked in coffee or tea to age them.  Another is that furniture can have wear added to it by hitting it with a heavy item over and over (like a chain) or using a sander to help add wear.

There are also times when reproduction Depression glass will have a different color than the real deal—I have seen reproduction pink have a kind of orange hue to it and a reproduction green that is too light.  I have also seen a pattern made in a color that it was ever issued originally (like the pattern ADAM by Jeanette Glass in Forest Green).

The Second thing to remember is to look at your surroundings and ask yourself a couple of questions.  Is there a large amount of the same item in one booth?  Is there plenty of the same item throughout the place you are shopping?  Is the item that you are looking for that is rare suddenly become plentiful?  All of these questions will help aid you in determining if the item you are interested in is the real deal.

The third thing to remember is to arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible.  One thing to do is to read as many reference guides as possible.  Another is to look at auction catalogs if possible—I have seen some tell a brief description on what makes the item for sale the real deal.  I also have seen vintage ads for items that I am interested in (this helps me determine a real item from a reproduction because the company used a photo of the item in the ad so I could compare the ad to the item).

This is just a couple of things to remember when I am trying to pick out the reproduction.  What tricks or tips have you heard of?

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How do you start a collection?

When it comes to collecting, there are so many areas to start a collection in.  It could be baseball items, Roseville pottery, Fenton art glass or even stamps.  There are so many that it can literally make your head spin completely off.

Not only that, it can also be pretty daunting when you are new to the vintage and collectibles market.  What are some things to remember when you start out?

The first thing to consider is you need to decide what you want to collect. You might want to consider what your interests are weather it be coins, advertising items, glassware or even pottery.

The second thing to do is to do some research for your collection.  Before you buy the first piece, you need to know what to look for—when it was made, what it was made from and if there are reproductions are a good starting place.

While looking this up, look to see what the pieces you are interested in are selling for.  This will help give you a good idea on what to pay when you run across an item for your collection.

The third thing to do is to focus your collection.  Once you’ve made your choice, you need to narrow it down to the best that you can find.

Also, you need to remember to be patient!  When you are collecting, it’s a marathon and not a sprint.  You don’t need to rush out and buy all the pieces you can find.  Instead, slow down and enjoy the journey.

This is just some of the things to keep in mind when you start a collection.  What tips did you run across when you started a collection?

Vintage furniture pieces that can still be found being made today

There are designs of vintage furniture pieces that are still being made today.  I know this might sound weird, but it could be that the item is an extremely popular form or that it has found a new use.  Here are some of the designs that you might find:

Tuffet—this is a piece of furniture that’s used as a footstool or even as a low seat. It can be distinguished from a stool in that it is completely covered in cloth so that no legs are visible.  It is essentially a large hard cushion that could have been made with an internal wooden frame for rigidity.

Picture courtesy of Wikipedia.com

Cheval mirror—this is a large full-length mirror that is usually standing on the floor on its own.

Picture courtesy of Wikipedia.com

Writing desk—this acts as a kind of compact office. Traditionally, a writing desk is for writing letters by hand. It usually has a top that folds to hide current work (it also makes the room containing it look tidy).  The closing top may contain several joints so that it can roll closed or even fold closed.  They often have small drawers that are called “pigeon holes”.  Modern writing desks are designed for laptop computers (they are typically too small for most desktop computers or a printer).

Picture courtesy of Wikipedia.com

This is only a few of the pieces that you will run across.  What other kinds have you run across?