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The art of collecting |

The art of collecting

Through the many years I have written these articles for the Telegraph, it seems I have covered a zillion different subjects. Sometimes, it gets difficult to decide on a certain subject to write about for the next Trash Treasures article. But all it may take is a bit of reminiscing and a few more subjects come to mind.

Of course, I have written about the items before that are in my photo this week, but this is going to be a generalization of many subjects. The photo of my favorite Desert Rose by Franciscan dinnerware is probably one of my most cherished things to write about. I may have never mentioned that anything with their advertising connection is, indeed, very sought after. The Franciscan Californian Craftsmen actually originated in 1875. But I am not here to tell the story about the company; I am here this week to stress the importance of finding the logo advertising signs and anything else actually associated with the Desert Rose dinnerware — or anything else in the advertising area of anything we may collect.

Finding history and associations of any sort make our treasure hunts even more fun. Please keep this in mind when you are hunting for your favorite items — any advertising regarding the items on your want list may be more valuable than an actual item.

And most of all, the advertising signs or placards placed on the shelf with your other treasured items bring a touch of reality. These Desert Rose dishes, for instance, are much more to me than just a special dinnerware. My grandmother in California, whom we visited in the 1950s, had these beautiful dishes in her cupboards and even on top of her cupboards. She always used them for our holiday meal. That is the main reason I wanted them when I got married: Memories! I believe in most cases of people collecting a certain item is brought about by a favorite memory: “My grandmother had them,” or “My aunt cooked with these pots and pans,” “or a favorite candy dish sat on the big round oak dining table and it always held my favorite pink and white candy!”

This is only the beginning of what adds to our treasure hunting moments in our lives. Whether you have thought about it or not, down the line this may be one of the reasons our children may appreciate these treasures, too, if they are made aware of the stories as they are growing up. I realize they are just things and we are not to put so much importance into things … but, when it comes to family items, some things grow to be much more important later down the road.

Our younger generations do not seem to be quite as interested in antiques — but, if they are told the stories and reminded of the “good old days,” they may become more interested as they grow older. Family heirlooms are hard things to let go for some people — like myself — but for others, they don’t want to have the little stuff or clutter, as some would call it. But everything needs a story — and it is up to us older folks (ouch) to tell the stories and leave notes inside a particular vase or a message regarding a certain painting or print. As I have mentioned many times, it is so nice if someone could take photos of your more precious items and tell a quick story about it — put them all into an album where it is shown to the family on regular occasions. Something I have talked about for years — and I am working on mine, but still not quite as consistent as I should have. It is hard to do. We are all so busy and always in a hurry it seems but, as a reminder, this is one of my main topics at What’s It Worth classes on Tuesday evenings.

When I started the classes over 26 years ago, I thought it would be fun if people knew more about the items they have. Here I am 26 years later and people are still bringing me their items to find out the history and/or if they have any value. You would be very surprised what I have seen over the years, and it is so much fun to be able to tell someone the vintage or age of an item and what the value actually could be if put on today’s market. I thought my classes might help those who wanted to insure their family heirlooms and needed more information in order to insure them. Things like those lists made yesterday may need to be updated every 10 or 15 years — values go up and down, so it can become quite a surprise some days.

Antiques are at least 100 years old — collectibles can be purchased brand new yesterday and considered a collectible today. There are special ages designated to certain areas, such as automobiles are considered to be antiques in fewer years than most other items. Per information online, cars are to be considered a classic car when they are 25 years or older and 50 years old to be an antique car. However, some states consider a car made after the end of the ’40s a classic, and anything from 1949 back to be an antique.

It gets a little stressful sometimes trying to find out the actual date of an item or maybe it was re-introduced to society again at a later date. Thanks to the internet, some of these questions can be answered with a little researching and key punching. The internet has definitely helped me with my classes and the research I do, but sometimes you need to go to more than just one website as someone else may have an entirely different theory or information. Then, you get to pick and choose or present both scenarios and let the owner of the item pick.

Antiques and collectibles — they are a part of everyone’s lives, whether they realize it or not. Everything we buy today may become a collectible tomorrow and maybe even an antique many many tomorrows from now. As I have always said, the hunt for our special treasures are truly a reward in itself — and, you never know what you may find along the way.

Category: Dinnerware  Tags: ,  Comments off
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