I'm interested in what all of you think about the future of antiques. I'm 60 and appreciate antiques but my daughter, who is in her 30's and many others of her age group have absolutely no interest in "that old stuff". Do you think there will be any market in the future for antiques as we know them?
Within the world of antique items, interest fluctuates all the time. On Antiques Roadshow, you often hear the appraiser state, "This piece would have sold for double ten years ago, but now...." OR "The market is currently hot for this type of antique after a several years of slow activity". There's always going to be interest, but not in all antiques at all times.
Your daughter may never share your interest in the antiques, or she may prefer certain kinds only. Maybe she'll even come to appreciate your antique pieces over time.
As for me, I prefer only case-good antiques, and not seating or upholstered items. So, the 1880's loveseat with the scrolled wooden trim my elderly relative would like me to give me is going to end up at the house of another relative who would appreciate it or in an antiques store. On the other hand, the chest-on-chest that is coming to me will be displayed with pride in my home!
Antiques are like wood tones, they come in and out of current taste but never totally out of style. Of course the finest antiques are always in style and demand. The pendulum swings. About the time it hits an extreme, it goes back in the opposite direction.
As you mentioned, your DD is simply not interested in them. She may change her mind later.
I will share that my DD (all of 23) loves the old (not antique yet) pieces that I have given her. She knows not to worry about a scratch here and there. It just adds a little love and patina.
~Like sands through the hourglass
~So are the days of our lives
A piece will only become an antique if it is well made, otherwise it is just junk. I cherish the Art Deco bedroom set I have. But some people either don't care for the style or appreciate the age and history of a piece.
Of course you can buy well made "New" case goods, but they are few and far between. Example: A recent trip to Ethan Allen brought some surprising results considering the costs.
Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
There will always be interest in well made objects from previous periods. The periods that are "in" will change, but the thrill of "rediscovery" will always be there. It most often starts with designers looking for something out of the ordinary and then filters down to the public at large once a trnd shows up in magazines. I can say that people who are not designers are not that adventurous and many people need their choices validated by friends and family. If your daughter and her peer group are shunning antiques as a whole, it may be that they are not exposed to a style that relates to them.
Hey Gramma Tina!
Antiques will never be out of style!
I work at a paint desk and I have a steady stream of customers who want help refinishing antiques.
The hand-made craftsmanship of earlier times has to a great degree been mechanized today, and that is another reason ... there is no current substitute for well-made pieces.
As for the antique market, that will fluctuate just like the weather ... peaks and valleys! But that may be driven by disposable income or other uncontrollable factors.
So even though your daughter doesn't care for antiques (right now), there are still plenty of people who gather and restore antiques.
Personally, I had a 50 year-old piano restored and turned into a player. I commonly play it during the holidays and I'm looking forward to hearing it every season I'm allowed ... though I am beginning to feel like an antique myself!?!
Gotta love those great old pieces!
I'm a Home Depot Paint Associate trained and authorized to help people on the internet.
I love antiques, but not all antiques. I think the same can be said for younger people's outlook on antiques. Pottery Barn, for instance, mixes new and old in their catalog layouts - vintage or antique rustic and industrial accessories can be very attractive and appealing to people of many ages when mixed with clean lined traditional or transitional style furniture.
I am not a lover of overly fussy ornate Victorian furniture. I prefer clean lined simple late 18th, 19th and early 20th century mahogany furniture, art, textiles, silver and china.
I mix my newer upholstered pieces with antique chests (my favorite is a hand-made mid 19th century pumpkin pine gentleman's chest), tilt-top tables and am crazy for small antique sideboards or servers that I use in bedrooms, living rooms, bathrooms and entries.
I think that while some younger people might like mid-century modern, Danish modern and flea market style...they often don't love Grandma's lace doilies,horse hair parlor chairs and fussy knickknacks. I think younger people often decorate with vintage or contemporary items rather than antiquesThis message has been edited. Last edited by: Cattknap,
Well, I didn't mean it exactly that way - but now that I reread it - yep, I'll stand by my original statement
Just because something is old doesn't make it necessarily desirable. While I may love the look of an old chest I don't necessarily want that hideous old chair - or table - or china cabinet just because it's an antique. To me, it's like jewelry - a beautiful classic piece here or there used with restraint is fine but if it's going to look like something Donna (from DDD) would wear, it's just not all that wonderful.
My 27-year old son is an antique lover - at least a respecter. He made many a mile with his granny and me going to antique stores, garage sales, and just plain "junking" - his term. That's one thing he says he misses since his granny got out of the antique business because of health.
Does this hat make my butt look big?
Well if you take a trip through any museum you will see that "antiques" will hardly go out of style.
Of course all people do not share an equal love or appreciation for any one thing, no matter if it is animal, plant or inanimate!
I became aware at maybe the age of 7 or 8 that I liked old things. To me they spelled mystery, romance, history, uniqueness and most of all the wisdom from others who have gone before us.
I have sisters close to me in age and friends who care nothing for antiques. I also have a 19 year old granddaughter who does and just told me she is going to be a history major. It delights me to see with what interest and joy she goes through lots I have bought at auction. Especially those that include letters, and other ephemera and the things that are feminine.
Actually a piece will become an antique if it is 100 years old. It doesn't matter if one considers it "junk" or not. It is still an antique!
Not to be a know it all or anything,but the only law stating that something becomes an "antique" at 100 years is the 1930 Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act pertaining to tariffs on import/export. The 100 year mark was only made because 1830 was considered the beginning of mass production and that was 100 years prior to the act becomming law.
Anything made during or after the industrial revolution is technically a collectable by virtue of its relative rarety, and not an antique because of the machinery involved in production.( let's not even get into the fact that "antique" refers to classical period Graeco-Roman) It's really the "antique" dealers who have bandied the word around so frivolously to make things sound more glamorous than they really are.
Antiques are never on their way out.
I didn't realize I had bummed my hub one afternoon. He walked into a shop and saw what was "valuable" to him and realized...."These are antiques". My age is becoming an antique.
Therefore....wait...those young people of today will find themselves antiques someday, too.
I'm thankful to have shared my love for antiques with my daughters. One is more interested in them than the other. Everyone has their own preferences.
What I meant by that statement is that if the piece is NOT well made it probably would never last 100 years in the first place.
Whether You Think You Can Or You Think You Can't..... You're Right - Henry Ford
Of course but there are a lot of things that are antiques that are not furniture or cabinetry etc.
Recently on Antiques road show they had a segment on cans that miners or such workers had thrown under some floor boards. A man who later bought the property retrieved them and they had a very good value a/c the graphics on the paper covers.
My DD vacations on a Canadian island where they once did lots of canning of fish. Some unused labels were found and sold for $60 each!
I do think many antiques are not worth as much as they were 10 years or so ago. In fact, I am amazed at the low price they are asking for some things.
Which is a good thing is you're a buyer -- bad if you're a seller.
However, most of our things were bought long ago and even though they were worth more, they're still worth more than we paid for them!
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Of course Charles, this is the "law" I was referring to. As individuals we can choose to consider and/or collect anything as "antique"
Defining an antique as somethng 100 years old or more has become a widely acceptable definition and even has some legal backing. Please see below.
[an-teek] Show IPA adjective, noun, verb, -tiqued, -ti·quing.
of or belonging to the past; not modern.
dating from a period long ago: antique furniture.
noting or pertaining to automobiles approximately 25 years old or more.
in the tradition, fashion, or style of an earlier period; old-fashioned; antiquated.
of or belonging to the ancient Greeks and Romans.
any work of art, piece of furniture, decorative object, or the like, created or produced in a former period, or, according to U.S. customs laws, 100 years before date of purchase.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Cattknap,
After doing tag sales for years - first helping my mother with sales and now I'm doing her estate - I'm finding people aren't buying like they used to years ago. In the 1980's it was not unusual for mom to get $400 to $500 a weekend just from a garage sale, now I consider it a good weekend if I get $30. It seems years ago everyone was collecting something and willing to pay a goodly price, and now people are more fussy, demanding and thrifty (i.e. cheap). They want things in perfect condition and only want to pay a fraction of the asking price. For example: "I see you have a Ming vase for $100. Did you know there's a microscopic chip in the base? Would you take 25 cents for it?"
It has to be quality and in excellent condition to grab a top price today. Maybe we should never have paid the high prices of the 80's if the quality or condition wasn't great.
I know what you mean, Mamaspoon. My mom collected Depression glass in the 70s when it was a popular collectible and getting top prices. Nowadays, you can barely give it away. To tell the truth, I wished my mom had invested the money she spent on these now unsaleable items and had invested it in tax-free securities!
To weakest link, I think the state of the economy has a lot to do with people being more careful spending money. However, there are a lot more articles on finding bargains. People read on the number of home foreclosures for example and then think if a person has a house for sale, they are going to give it away as if all home sellers are desperate. Couple that trend with the fact that old stuff is not currently de rigeur and you get a down market for anything but the finest antiques.
I am not noticing that quality antique furniture has gone down in price - not at all. It is still outrageous where I live.
For me,(and I suspect many of the younger gen) didn't get into antiques until members of my family began to have health problems and pass away, which also coincided with me getting older too. But my interest in our family history and genology went along with it. The old saying is true: "You don't know what you got until you lose it", certainly applied to me.
prices are a lot cheaper here in Sarasota Fl. then in Boston, MA
I think people have a "garage sale" psychology - that is "nothing should be priced over $1 at a garage sale." They come expecting things to be at give-away prices and it turns them off if the first price tag they see say $10, even if it is an item worth three times that.
I also think it depends on where you live. Our town of hackettstown has a big historic section loaded with Victorian homes. the local college, hospital and M&M Mars bring alot of young people into the area. When we have our town wide yard sale in Spring, washington street gets alot of young couples looking for interesting things to decorate with. Every year we have great luck selling furniture, chandeliers, rugs ect. and the good stuff goes for a fair price.i can't tell you how many younger people come back year after year looking for fun antique decor.
And you used to be able to sell stuff you wouldn't give to you enemies. Not today. There will always be a market for pieces that are of good quality and in good condition or unusual. Put a third hand print that's been mass produced by the thousands,or a chipped mismatched plate/bowl or an old lamp that was not of good quality to begin with-today you get next to nothing.
I am hardly an expert on antiques or vintage items, but the market for these items waxes and wanes; it's very fickle.
Some years back, I worked for a boutique where we sold, among other things, 19c. estate jewelry, early 20c. collectibles like signed Lalique pieces and Bing & Grondahl, then LLadro from the 50s, Danish collectibles, RS Prussia, and the like. It did not sell very well in the shop. Eventually, the owner was able to unload some, but not all, at an estate auction house and on eBay.
My point being that small collectible items are not very popular, in spite of their pedigree. So many people want to unload these days, not acquire more stuff.
Just anecdotally, my observations are that antique, rare or vintage furniture that is in excellent shape and comes with an interesting historic backstory is still popular with discerning buyers.This message has been edited. Last edited by: aychihuahua,
I find antiques and shops that carry collectables are going away. It is sad. Consider what is being made today. will it exist 50 or 100 years from now. we toss thing in the trash because there are no repair people, and you can buy new cheeper than repair.
The new buzz word is...vintage. It allows you to buy something dirt cheap at a garage sale or thrift store, paint it, distress and antique it and resell it for a small fortune! And younger folks grab it up...I know this because that's what happens at the place I work. No worries about dating a piece, knowing it's provenance or condition issues.
**Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass...it's about learning to dance in the rain**
The UK magazine "Homes and Antiques" shows a wonderful mix in every issue of old and new. I believe I am going to send over my read issues to my DD who has a Hobby Lobby inspired house. I believe that came about when she was single and money for decorating was scarce.
Really interesting discussion!
I was at an auction a few months ago when an old wooden coffee grinder came up for sale. It was in beautiful shape and still worked well.
The auctioneer was only able to get $15.00 for it!
He remarked about the fickleness of antiques and vintage items and said in the 80's and 90's he would have sold the grinder for $90-$120.
I have a beautiful mahagony marble topped table that I paid $325 for in 2002. At this same auction a very similar one went for $35.00. Everyone at the auction just groaned when the mallet went down and probably thought, "why didn't I bid on that".
If you love antique furniture, tables, chairs etc...now is the time to get them because they seem to be at an all time low, at least in my general area ( Washington DC).
My Grandmother was an antique dealer and often said that "junk is junk no matter what era it was made in." She had beautiful things and now I appreciate them ...but was too young to appreciate them back when she had her shop.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
Coffee grinders sold for pur gold in the 80's and 90's! Even went up to $240. They are not hot now!
Supply and demand often dictate prices and right now many people with antiques are either dying or downsizing so there is oversupply in many areas. Also less demand because many of those under 40 are still into the trendy new furniture from Ethan Allen or Pottery Barn. Hopefully more of them will come to see the value of older well-made vintage and antique furniture but I'm not holding my breath. I do also agree with those who say it depends on the area you live as to pricing and availability.
I am concerned that many antiques, even good ones, will be painted or trashed due to ignorance, just as the price of gold is causing many vintage/antique gold jewelry pieces to be melted down. If items such as those old coffee grinders have little monetary value people will throw them away and they will be gone forever.
"I have always had an aversion to the concepts of in style and out of style." ~Rose Tarlow
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