Antique is the Latin word for ‘old’. In the colloquial term it refers to an item or an object which is old, rare and collectible. Antiques are objects which usually represent the days of yore, they carry with them craftsmanship and uniqueness. An object which has been around for 50 to 100 years is considered to be an antique, it is collected or desired because it is rare or has unique features. Motor vehicles, furniture and jewelry of the previous era are often collected as antiques which are heirlooms or even bought in shops.
Antiquing or antique shopping has to be one of the most enjoyable of pastimes; the antiquarian has to go through a lot of wandering and loitering in a number of antique shops before he is fully satisfied and happy with his buy. Exciting as this pastime may seem it is usually one which is most difficult, it is something more than the ordinary daily shopping that one does. It takes a lot of practice, diligence, persistence and an eye for quality to finally strike a good deal in antique shopping be it for personal collection or for sale. Antiques are sold in shops exclusive to them and antique dealers work their best to fill the stock. While antique shopping can be done in the hometown it also takes one to far off places away from home, today people shop at home – online.
Here are some tips for successful antique shopping:
- Study and shop - Having a rough idea of the price and value of a favorable item is a great help as it helps a person secure a good deal. This can be done only with careful studying and examining of items.
- Eye for quality - Depending on the specifically marked genre or price tag on an item alone will not guarantee a satisfying buy as antique shopping requires a keen eye for quality. This means that the best way to make a good bargain is to keep a close eye for detailed and quality craftsmanship, exquisite patterns, finesse and other signs of excellent workmanship, often seen in unlabelled and generally undervalued items.
- Bargaining skills - Even though the prices of antique items can be exorbitant at times, most dealers are ready to negotiate. Skillful and persistent bargaining for items at flea markets and thrift stores will find you good deals at reasonable rates.
- Duplicate vs. original - An antique shopper must keep his eyes open for authentic looking imitation pieces. These items are generally available at ‘too good to be true’ prices.
- Best time for antiquing - the best times to do your antique shopping with the certainty of a good buy is usually early in the day and towards the end of it. This is highly convenient as there are usually less people at these times and chances of a good bargain are raised.
Difficult as it is, antique shopping is a good reason for one to take a break and head for a sale or flea market. Armed with these useful tips the serious antiquarian can actually enjoy himself while antiquing.
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