The thrill of the hunt: Final in a Three-Part Series, “Why Buy Antiques?”

You could go to Macy’s or Target and get a complete set of very nice wine glasses in less than an hour.
You could get a nice picture for the wall over your sofa from a local framing gallery or furniture store.
You could purchase a beautiful set of dishes at the local home goods shop.

But what fun is that?
There’s a whole world of excitement, suspense and gratification out there when you hunt for vintage and antique things!
There’s elaborately decorated or elegantly simple retro china. Brilliantly cut glassware from Victorian times. Beautifully framed paintings and prints that would cost hundreds of dollars if new. Or funky stemware that is totally unique.

These colorful Mid-Century Krome Kraft wine glasses were designed so that the glass inserts could be replaced if they broke!

These colorful Mid-Century Krome Kraft wine glasses were designed so that the glass inserts could be replaced if they broke!

The biggest difference? Vintage and antique items are one-of-a-kind.
Nobody’s making them anymore, so when you snag one, it’s yours alone.
Whether it’s wine glasses, figurines, baskets, art or jewelry, why settle for the cookie-cutter items available at just about any store – when you can enter the world of Antiquing for Sport? In many cases, you can buy older items for the same price or less than the boring department store equivalent.

As with any addiction, it starts with just one item.
It could be a lusterware condiment set you got from your grandmother, or a couple of ancient tins that you never knew what to do with. One day, you realize that you’d like to have more of these lovely items. In fact, you suddenly realize that you can use older things to create a style that’s uniquely you!

Lusterware salt and pepper shakers. Photo courtesy of Ayla’s Antiques, Etsy

Lusterware salt and pepper shakers. Photo courtesy of Ayla’s Antiques, Etsy

Before you know it, the game is on!

Once you’re hooked, you’ll find yourself trying to complete your set by scouring yard sales, antique stores and thrift shops. You may even search vintage shops like those on Etsy.

It can become an obsession.
But a very entertaining one!
So…what if you can’t find more “Forsythia” dishes, saucers, or serving pieces?
First of all, of course you can — if you play the game right.
And who says that everything has to match, anyway?
After all, anyone can set a lovely table when everything looks exactly alike.
On the other hand, a table set with complementary plates, saucers, cups, glasses and silverware looks far more sophisticated – and practically begs for compliments and questions!

Coordinated vintage items often look more interesting than a perfectly matched set. Photo courtesy of FancifulTableware, Etsy

Coordinated vintage items often look more interesting than a perfectly matched set. Photo courtesy of FancifulTableware, Etsy

Vintage finds can often work together better than cookie-cutter matched sets!

Vintage finds can often work together better than cookie-cutter matched sets! Photo courtesy of Treehouse Antiques, Cape May, NJ

It’s fun to spot the other hunters, too.
Visit your local thrift store, and you can tell who’s on the hunt for that special vintage item overlooked by the storeowners.

Slowly we turn, step by step, up and down each aisle. We pretend to be browsing inexpensive furnishings for a child’s dorm room or first apartment, but our eyes give us away. We cast surreptitious glances at others, hoping they don’t spot the treasure before we get there. And we smile to ourselves, because we know we’re all “in the game.”

Sometimes we luck out. Other times we leave, hoping the next day will be better. But in the end, it’s the anticipation that gets our adrenaline going.

If you’ve never indulged in an antiques hunt, give it a try. You may discover, as we have, that most department store merchandise is just bleh compared to the quality, design and uniqueness of vintage things (many of which were made right here in the United States, too!).

If you love learning about antiques as much as I do, follow the blog so you won’t miss the next article.
And enjoy the hunt!

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About sarathurston

I'm a marketing communications writer who also loves antiques and collectibles. You can find my shop on Etsy at http://www.etsy.com/shop/JanvierRoad
This entry was posted in Antiques, Collectibles, Etsy, Fairings, Glass, Porcelain, Why Are Antiques Important? and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The thrill of the hunt: Final in a Three-Part Series, “Why Buy Antiques?”

  1. Pingback: Trendspotting: Anchor Hocking’s “Wexford” Pattern | Janvier Road: Where old becomes exciting and new

  2. Pingback: The thrill of the hunt: Final in a Three-Part Series, “Why Buy Antiques?” | From the desk of Sara Thurston

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