A little knowledge about shopping for antiques can go a long way before you go in and spend a whole lot of money on something that might not be worth anything later. It is good to educate yourself at least a little before going shopping for antiques, if you have no prior experience.
There is no denying that antiquing has become popular in recent years and there is no wonder why with so many people who have made their money by buying and selling antiques as well as being able to find beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces that no one else will have. Maybe you are even looking to invest in a new family heirloom, whatever your reasons, keep reading below to learn a few tips and tricks before you visit any antique shop Melbourne or anywhere else you want to find antiques.
Get a professional opinion
If you are really unsure or you don’t want to risk it, then you can always ask a professional for help, even by taking a friend who is more experienced than you are can make a world of difference. Never rush into buying anything or spending a lot of money on something you aren’t sure is worth it. You can find plenty of antique shop Melbourne by walking around or word of mouth, or just have a quick browse online. You are sure to find a shop that has something you love.
Be aware of the dealer
If you have good people skills, you will probably pick up on this easier than most, but if not that’s okay too. This is a great way to tell if the piece you are getting is really what it seems to be. If the dealer, for example, seems a little too pushy then they might be trying to get rid of an antique that really isn’t what it seems. Also, remember that they are there to help, so if they are hesitant to answer your questions take that as a red flag.
Pay attention to the finish
If you are planning to buy any kind of large items of furniture, like a wooden table or dresser, the finish is a dead give away if it is as old as you might think it is. Some older pieces may have even been refinished and while a refinished antique may still be valuable, it still won’t be as valuable as a piece with the original finish. A piece with its original finish will look worn and will not have a shiny appearance whereas a refinished piece will feel smooth and look a bit shiny. Some more signs that are a giveaway is that an antique will have some dust and debris in the crevices as well as wax or oil.
Get prepared and be informed
Before you even step out have a look around online and decide what kind of piece you are looking for. Even if you go out and see a piece that you like, go home and do your research. Gather all the knowledge you can on the original piece then go back with a flashlight and a measuring tape so you can see if it has the same finish and dimensions as the original and to make sure it’s not just a replica.
Take notes on how it was made
Take a pen and paper if you must and jot down anything you see about the way it was designed and crafted. If the item has been made by hand, you will see nails and not staples. Dovetail cuts are another great giveaway – if they are slightly different you may have found something really valuable, if they are completely symmetrical then they are almost certainly made by a machine.