What are some of the different types of pottery that is used in the kitchen?

When you start to go to auctions, antique malls or even flea markets, you will hear several different names for pottery that is used in a kitchen.  Here’s a couple of the names that you will run across:

Bone china—this is a type of porcelain that contains bone ash in it. Bone china is the strongest of the porcelain or china ceramics, having very high mechanical and physical strength and chip resistance, and it is also known for its high levels of whiteness and translucency.

Stoneware—this is made from unrefined clay.  This type of clay has a grittier texture than porcelain due to its higher sand content.  This is fired at a high temperature (2185 degrees Fahrenheit), and the end result is a piece of pottery that is strong and chip resistant.  This type of pottery is often used to make mugs and baking dishes, and it can also be safely heated in ovens.  Stoneware is popular for dinnerware because it’s durable—and it is also less expensive than porcelain.

Earthenware—this is fired at 1915 degrees Fahrenheit, which is quite a bit lower than stoneware.  The result of this is porous pottery that is not nearly as strong as either stoneware or porcelain.  A lot of the time, earthenware can be strengthened by glazing (glazing hardens the surface, making it non-porous and it allows earthenware pieces to be used for cooking).  This is most commonly used to make pots for plants—terracotta is a type of earthenware pottery.

Porcelain—this is made from the finest quality of white clay. It is fired at a very high temperature (2300 degrees Fahrenheit)—this results in a hard, strong and translucent piece of pottery.  This type of pottery is usually white with a very smooth surface.  It is non-stick, non-porous and even dishwasher safe that makes porcelain the safest pottery to use in a kitchen. High-end dinnerware is commonly made of porcelain, and it is the most expensive kind of pottery.

This is some of the more common names that you will run across.  What are some of the names that you have run across?

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What are some of the different types of marbles that you will run across?

Marbles are a fun area to collect with a wide variety of them to find.  There are so many different names out there, it can make your head spin.  Here’s a few of the names that you will run across:

Bennington—this type of marble got their name from Bennington pottery in Vermont.  They made some spotted pottery that looks like this type of marble.  Bennington marbles have a blue or even brown glaze, and the marbles aren’t completely round.  This is because Benningtons have a circular unglazed spot on them that is a result from it touching another marble while still wet with glaze.

Steelies—this is actually a ball bearing that is being used as a marble.

Peewees—these are very small marbles that measure less than a 1/2 inch wide.

Onion Skins—these are End of the day marbles in which colored flecks of glass are stretched while these are being made.  This is so the core has may swirls that resembles an onion.

This is just a handful of the names that you will run across when you are dealing with marbles.  What names have you run across?

What are some odd utensils for the kitchen that you might run across?

It does not take long in the world of antiques and collectibles for you to run across a weird utensil for the kitchen.  Here are some of the oddities that you might run across:

Cake Breaker—this is a multi-pronged metal serving piece that looks like a large comb.  It was primarily marketed as a way to slice a delicate cake without putting any undue pressure on it.  Items like Angel Food Cake are one of the items that you would use this on.

Oyster Server—this has an edge that looks like a circular saw edge.  Items like fried oysters were extremely popular at the turn of the 20th century, and this popularity demanded that this type of food get its own server. The Oyster Server’s jagged flared edge helps to gather small, lightweight food.

Lemon Forks—these tiny forks were usually used for lemons that were served with seafood or tea. The tines are sharp and splayed outwards to grip the tough lemon rind.

Victorian Folding Fruit Knife—in the Victorian era, fruit was considered a luxury because shipping it was very hard if not impossible in some cases. Men carried these fruit pocket knives to display their economic stature.  These have a small blade that is the perfect length to cut fruit.

This is only a few of the odd utensils that you will run across for the kitchen.  What have you run across?

What are some key aspects that you need consider when you are buying antiques?

When buying antiques and collectibles, there are some key aspects that you need to keep in mind.  Here are a couple to remember:

Try to keep within your budget.  You wouldn’t want to spend an entire month’s budget on just one item.

Buy what you love.  It can be anything from pottery to advertising items.

Quality of the piece.  You might think this as the condition of the piece, but it is actually down a totally different road.  With this, you need to look at how well each piece in the item is made and how well the item is put together.

Keep an eye on the condition.  Chips, cracks and even missing paint will more often than not take away from the value of the item.

Ask plenty of questions.  Any reputable dealer will be more than glad to take the time to answer any question you might have about the piece.

This is just a couple of the things to keep in mind when you are buying antiques or collectibles.  What are some that you know of?

What are some of the different types of glass that I could run across?

When you are out and about shopping, you will run across a wide variety of glassware.  Satin glass, Depression glass and Burmese glass—there are more than enough types of glassware to make your head spin.  Here are some of the types of glass that you could run across at our favorite place to shop:

Peachblow glass—this is a late 19th century glassware that can be found either opaque and more often satinized.  This type of art glass is graduated in color from shades of red or rose to a white color at the bottom.  This glass is It is also never lined.

Glass etching—this type of glass comprises the techniques of creating art on the surface of the glass by applying an acidic, caustic, or even an abrasive substance.  Traditionally, this is done after the glass is blown or cast (although the mold-etching form has replaced some forms of surface etching).

Cameo glass—this is a luxury form of glass that is produced by etching and carving through fused layers of differently colored glass.  This will produce designs (one being a white opaque figure and motifs on a dark-colored background).  Highly coveted pieces are examples that have more that three colors on them.

Peking glass—this is an overlay carved glass created by layering material around a core that is very similar to Cameo glass. This glass was created in Peking, China (hence the name).  Peking glass is more often than not made with different colored layers of glass.  This creates a contrasting look when the outer layers are carved away.  In the late 19th century, glass companies in Czechoslovakia produced imitation Peking glass beads for them to use as costume jewelry pieces.

What other different types of glass have you run across?

Three things to consider when you sell an item online

When I first started to sell online, there were some things that I found out pretty fast.  Here’s a few of them:

The weight of an item matters.  This will be a major factor of how much shipping and handling that you charge for an item.  The weight will be a combination of the box, packing materials and the item itself.  A good rule of thumb is to find a box that is a little bigger than the item to you are shipping, but not too big—it will definitely cost you more.

There are restrictions on what items can be sold.  Each website that you sell on will tell you what you can and CAN NOT sell, and each selling website will tell you when you set up your seller’s account.  If you already have seller’s account, you can find this pretty fast in the HELP section of the website.

Use social media to your benefit.  Facebook, Twitter and even Pinterest come in very handy when you want to spread the word that you have listed an item—I usually include a photo when I am on one of these sites so people can also see what’s for sale.

This is just a few of the things to consider when you sell an item online.  What other things have you found out?

BEGINNERS TIP: What are some things to expect at an antique mall?

One of the places that I love to go to and try to find great deals are at a local antique mall.  They have everything from advertising to pottery, and the inventory is usually different.  If you have never been to one, what are some of the things that you should expect?

The first thing is that the dealers that have a booth there are most likely not going to be there.  The antique mall will have someone up front running the store.

The second thing to remember is the people that run the store are open to offers on just about any item.  If the item came out of a booth that another dealer runs, the people that run the mall will be more than glad to call the dealer and give them the offer for you.

Always make sure you look at the tag—if the tag says FIRM, then the dealer will not take an offer on it.

The third thing to remember is that one of the best times to get a great deal is the middle of the week.  Auctions, estate sales and even garage sales are more often than not going to be on the weekend—the dealers will bring in new inventory about Tuesday or Wednesday and try to clear out the old about the same time.

The last thing to remember is that you never know what you are going to run across, so keep your eyes peeled.

What kinds of tips that you use when you shop at an antique mall?

What are some different types of pottery decoration?

When you are out and about at a flea market, antique store or even local auctions, you will run across a wide variety of pottery with different decorations.  Here is a few of the decoration types that you will run across:

Tin-glazing—this is the process of giving ceramic items a tin-based glaze that is white, glossy and opaque, and it is normally applied to either red or buff pottery.  The whiteness of the tin glaze itself encourages its frequent decoration with color.  Majolica, delftware and even faience are some of the names used for some of the common types of this type of pottery.

Blue and white pottery—this covers a wide range of white pottery that is decorated under the glaze with a blue color. The decoration can be applied by hand, but it’s now usually applied with a stencil or by transfer-printing.

Lusterware—this is a type of pottery with a metallic style glaze that gives the effect of iridescence.  It’s produced by using metallic oxides in an over glaze finish and then fired in second firing at a lower temperature.

Salt-glaze—this is a pottery (usually stoneware) that has a glaze of a glossy, translucent finish with a slightly orange peel-like texture.  This finish is formed by throwing common salt into the kiln during the higher temperature part of the firing process.

This is only a few of the types of decoration that you will find on pottery.  What other types have you run across?

All the different colors of glassware can make your head spin!

Whenever you are shopping for vintage glassware, hearing all of the different colors of vintage glassware can make your head spin.  Here’s some of the colors that you can run across:

Ice blue—this is a very pale color of blue, and it can have a pastel iridescence if it is on a piece of carnival glass.

Vaseline glass—this is a glass color that has had uranium salts added to the molten glass mix.  When you look at this type of glass under normal lighting, the glass will appear to be yellow or even a yellow green.  When this glass is hit with an ultraviolet light (a blacklight), the glass will fluoresce in a very bright green (it looks like it could be glowing).

Reverse amberina—this is a type of glassware that is the opposite of amberina.  The central part of the glassware is red and it blends out to yellow at the edges (amberina is yellow at the center and it turns red at the edge).

Amber—this type of glass can vary from almost a yellow to a brown.  The best way to visualize the color of amber that is used when jewelry is made.

Horehound—this type of glassware is an amber color with a gray hue to it.  Some collectors call this color of glassware “Root beer”.

This is a small sample of what you can find on glassware.  What other colors have you run across?

Vintage furniture pieces that you may not run across everyday

When you are out and about shopping for vintage items, you will run across some vintage furniture that you may not know what it is.  Here’s a couple of pieces that you might run across:

Tallboy—this is a piece of furniture that incorporates a chest of drawers with a wardrobe on top.  The tallboy was considered to be the wardrobe of the 1700’s.

Highboy—this is a piece of furniture that consists of a double chest of drawers (it’s also known as a chest-on-chest).  This piece of furniture has a lower section that is usually wider than the upper section.

Pie safe—this is also referred to as a pie cabinet, pie safe cupboard, or even a pie chest.  It is a piece of furniture that is typically used to store pies.  The cabinet will have sections that consist of either pierced metal or screen to help the pies cool.  In the past, some people also stored meat, perishables, and other items inside of their pie safes.

Hoosier cabinet—this is also known simply as a “Hoosier”.  It is a type of cupboard (or even a free–standing kitchen cabinet) that also serves as a workstation.  It was popular in the first few decades of the 1900’s.  This was because most of the houses did not have built–in kitchen cabinetry.

This is just a few of the vintage furniture pieces that you may not run across everyday.  What other pieces have you run across?