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The Collectors Newsletter #850 -- March 2011
The Collectors Newsletter #850 -- March 2011
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1. Work from home selling antiques & collectibles
2. This Week's Survey
3. Stories From our readers
4. This Week's Antique News
5. Your Classifieds
6. Newly listed items
7. Funny Old Stuff
8. Wanted ads. Can you help?
9. A Vintage Recipe
10. A Vintage Recipe Request from a Reader
11. New On line Merchants
12. Helpful Resources For Collectors
Many thanks to everyone that voted for TIAS.com in the 2011 About.com "Reader's Choice Awards" as the "Best Place to Buy Antiques & Collectibles." It was an honor just to make to the finals and to be listed with Web sites such as eBay, Etsy, Bonanza & Rubylane. We were genuinely shocked when we won. For more details on this award see:
Win Free Stuff on our Facebook page.
Several times a week, we are going to post a photo on our Facebook page of an antique or collectible that is being sold by a TIAS merchant. The first person to tell us what the item is wins one of these very cool little gadgets. See:
. So stop by our facebook page here:
1. Work from home selling antiques & collectibles.
In your spare time you can sell antiques and collectibles from home.
Since 1995 TIAS.com has been helping dealers and collectors just like you to sell their antiques and collectibles online. It costs you nothing to kick the tires and see if an online store is right for you. Give TIAS a try today at:
2. This Week's Survey
Every week we post a new survey question and the results from the previous week's survey. Survey questions are about anything related to antiques & collectibles. If you have a suggestion for a survey question, email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we might use it in the next newsletter.
Come and visit us on Facebook where you can post comments and photos - see us at
This weeks survey question is ....
"A genuine Electric chair circa 1896 was recently sold by the owner to a TV program called the "Treasure Hunters Roadshow". If you saw an item like this for sale at an antique show, how would you feel about it?"
It takes just a few seconds to give us your anonymous opinion at:
We'll tabulate the results and publish them in next week's newsletter.
Last Week's Survey Question Was....
"Silver has gone up to $36 an ounce and gold is at $1433 an ounce. Many collectors of vintage silver & gold items are finding that the scrap value of their collectibles is far exceeding their market value as collectibles. When you sell an antique or collectible as scrap it is usually melted down, destroying it as a collectible. Would you ever sell vintage gold or silver items from your collection as scrap?"
37.1% said Never
12.9% said Absolutely
50% said Perhaps
Many people mentioned that there were many different things to consider when making this type of decision, which is why 50% said "Perhaps".
Here are some written replies that were included with the results from last week's survey
a) Gotta respond to this one. My collectibles don't include gold and silver, but my jewelry box does. Not a lot of gold, more silver, but every piece, worn often or rarely, is too meaningful to me to sell as scrap. I've considered it, tho, 'cause money's always a bit tight in my home. But my very heavy charm bracelet, given me by my parents for my 16th birthday and filled throughout my 20's and 30's by people I love(d) may not be worn much .. it jangles ... but I just can't part with it. My mother's gold and pearl earrings I purchased at a posh Madison Avenue store for my father to give her for a special anniversary cannot go that way, either. I do wear them for my own special occasions. Other small items mean almost as much to me. The sale money will just go the way all money is spent .. probably on gifts for my grandchildren, whom I adore, but then it'll be gone. And so will my precious jewelry. Arlene in Brooklyn
b) After the stuff is melted, whatever it was is gone forever! I have a deep appreciation for antiques and try to preserve items I acquire - not in it just for the money.
c) I collect antique fine jewelery, and have only seen values increase. The reason so many precious metal pieces are rare is because too many have been melted down in years past; why destroy a piece of history for a quick dollar?
d) My knee jerk reaction was NEVER! After some consideration ... PERHAPS, if I was broke and needed cash, I would be forced to sell vintage gold or silver.
e) If it had no sentimental value I would. Also, I would ask a buyer to pay fair marked price for the gold or silver if I could not sell it at 35.00 or 1433. for an ounce of pure silver or gold I would sell it for scrap. Who's to say the the buyer wouldn't to the same. If I bought gold or silver at a discount I'd scrap it in a second and make a profit.
f) As long as I'm not desperate for money, the only items I would sell for scrap are those that may be old but are truly ugly. So far just one item -- a silver ring of my mother-in-law's that looks like a bad version of a person's bottom -- has received that fate. There is usually enough charm in even things not my taste that I can't bear to sacrifice the artist's work that way.
g) The sentimental value and irreplaceable evidence of craftsmanship in antique items would be forever lost after melting down for $$$ If I were destitute, perhaps I would not be so concerned about the irreplaceable.
h) As a dealer, I see scrap silver and gold every day. Some items I reserve for their collectible value such as silver patterns that have not been damaged or unusual gold jewelry pieces. Bent and damaged pieces go to the smelter. It is difficult to invest in the pieces that should be saved because there are few buyers of them when silver and gold are so high. It will take time for the public to adjust to higher price levels. Many people think I am gouging them when I price the items that are still usable and collectible. They don't understand that their rarity will increase as other pieces are melted down making those pieces which are saved harder to find.
i) I would try and sell item first...but if I needed the cash to live on, best offer gets the item. Lets face it, if it is to settle a estate, it's got a good chance of being scraped. On the plus side, every time a collectible is scraped, the remaining ones go up in value.
j) I love collecting vintage pieces, but I do recognize things that artistically have little value in the bigger picture. I don't believe that I would sell out of my collection. (But I do believe that if sterling continues to rise in value... some items in my collection would be more valuable to me in the scrap pile than in my home...and truthfully would be of little or no interest in the eyes of a collector. (The one item that I'm thinking of is actually a modern piece that was discovered at an estate sale for a minimal price (less than five dollars just about a year ago)... but that value changes greatly as prices rise. ) As I mentioned, the item was of minimal value at a recent sale, so it's not really an exciting item, but I might have a little more money to play with if I chose to sell it. The interesting thing is that right now, I can imagine finding a local scrap dealer and making a trade for an item that I'd prefer to save! Some local buyers are definitely willing to do that! They know the silver value, and the price they paid for it, and are sometimes willing to sell items at a reasonable price.
k) As a general rule, no I wouldn't. However, I might consider damaged items or items of poor quality as candidates for scrap. I don't agree with people purchasing quality antique items and running as fast as they can to the scrap dealer to melt them down, and I'm seeing this trend with increasing frequency.
l) We have deliberately retained scrap gold & silver for years. If our financial situation was dire, yes, we would sell nice collectible pieces as scrap, but only if necessary to survive.
m) For many years, a certain business that deals in replacements for china and silverware has offered me FAR LESS than sterling silver scrap value for my old sterling silver flatware. With silver values up this high, I would not hesitate for a second to sell my flatware for scrap - I would get FAR MORE than this reseller would ever offer me.
n) NO! NO! NO! ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY, UNEQUIVOCALLY NO!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not unless I was E.T. and needed the gold to complete a circuit to "phone home" and then I'd try tinfoil first.(smile)
o) If you need the money you sometimes have to sacrifice your principles! Regrettably sentimentality won't pay the bills. Back in the 70's we saw the price of silver consign some wonderful antique silver into the melt ...this is nothing new! There are more speculators around now to pump up prices and mining will not rise due to already dwindling and depleted supplies. It will be a shame to see fine silver disappear but if the collector's market does not become more bullish and become comparable with the price of scrap ....this is an almost certain fate especially in an economic depression
p) Depends on what the object is. Sentimental value, historic value. If simply a collectable the very act of destroying this particular object would raise the price/value of others of the same thing.
q) I have sold some silver pieces for scrap, mainly because I couldn't sell them for the price I asked as jewelry. It's tempting to sell some of my gold pieces, but they're really too beautiful to imagine melting them down. So I just hold on to them.
r) Prices on silver & gold have gone up before and fell; I'm sure they will again. Besides, most of my collectibles are way more valuable to me sentimentally.
s) It would depend on the item. I have a woman's gold pocket watch from the late 1800's. I found it in the house we moved into 3 years ago. It has its original box from the jewelry store plus the original receipt tucked in the lining. It has a beautiful chain that has small opals set in it in 3 places. It doesn't run so its probably not worth much as a collectible watch but I'm not sure that I could bring myself to sell it for the gold. Sometimes there is more "value" to a collectible piece than its monetary value.
t) Age is only one factor in determining value, and collector interest. Most of the vintage silver now being melted down is flatware - old but boring. As a dealer, I have to make an income. I buy old spoons and forks for a percentage of scrap, and sell them for a higher percentage of scrap. It's more challenging a decision with a personalized vintage item. Currently, I'm weighing up whether to sell a nice old 9K pocket watch, beautifully engraved in 1913, and presented at that time to the Vicar of a small village church for 25 years of devoted service. If I keep it, what do I do with it ? The only interested buyers are those willing to pay gold scrap value. Sadly, it's likely to be scrapped to be reborn as nose studs...but one's family has to eat.
u) Sometimes the need for cash exceeds the satisfaction of collecting.
3. Stories from our readers
We collect interesting stories about collecting. Things like your best find, unusual collections, bizarre collectibles even things that bug you. Anything and everything that is interesting that has to do with antiques & collectibles. We may publish it here. Send your story to Phil@tias.com
Many years ago, my Father In Law came from Pittsburgh, PA to visit my wife and I in Los Angeles. While on his summer vacation with us, we brought him to Catalina Island, where my Father and I have been going since I was a child. He loved the city of Avalon and all the stories we told him about all our experiences sailing to the island over the past 50 years. A few months later, he came across a very old postcard of Catalina Island in an antique store in Pittsburgh. He sent it to my father because he thought he would get a kick out of seeing something about the island. My father gave it to me, and I was fascinated with it. I started looking in antique stores and finding more old Catalina Island postcards and photographs from the turn of the century. The more ephemera I found, the more fascinated I became with it all. After many years of collecting old Catalina Island paper, I have thousands of brochures, photos, postcards and advertising cards from the Island. I have learned so much about the rich history of the island, and I have my Father In Law to thank for getting me started. It is an interest that I will always have.
I saw your survey results concerning the remains from the Titanic. Personally, I think everything from the Titanic should be left in place, as it is, down there in the ocean depths. It is a sad tragic graveyard and a monument to mans' overwhelming pride and arrogance that he is the master of the universe or even of this world we live on. To assume otherwise is to invite catastrophe.
Only if we learn from this tragedy will something good come from this. Let the dead and their remains rest in peace physically undisturbed. The photos and videos taken of the wreck and site by professionals are sufficient. Otherwise, let the ship and her parts and the site itself slowly and sadly disintegrate into dust in peace. Regards, The Rev. Fr. Alfred Hougham+, TDC
Phil, this is not a story. Someday I'll send something, I promise. But I'd like to ask Judy from Jacksonville, FL about the film she can get for the Brownie "pullout" camera. I have my parents' beautiful, old, green Kodak which seems to be in good condition, but I've thought I couldn't possibly get film for it. (Also, have my own 50's Polaroid Land camera and 8mm Revere movie camera. What to do with them?)
Anyway, if Judy can get this message, I'd appreciate it. Thanx and thank you from the bottom of my heart for your newsletter. I don't buy so much anymore ... have way too much stuff and am in my mid-70's. But I still love it all. Arlene in Brooklyn
My mother is 90 years old and has always been an enthusiastic collector of sparkling jewelry . She has also avidly gone to garage and estate sales for many years...she still likes to go . Several years ago while traveling, she went to a garage or estate sale where she found a nice "diamond" band in a box marked "costume jewelry "- probably a c-z in a silver setting. The ring was a larger size than she wore but she liked it and she bought it.
Several years later she came to live with me and one day while going through her things, she gave me the ring. It was pretty and it fit - but I have an allergy to some metals. I looked inside the ring and noticed a mark on the inside of the ring (18k) ! Once in a while c-zs are put in gold settings...but not usually in 18k. Could it be real?
While she was out one day, mom took the ring to a jeweler to have him check it. The ring appraised at $2000.00!
Mom was a little dejected as she told me about finding the ring. You see, there was also a huge solitaire "diamond" ring in the same "costume jewelry" box- - -that she didn't buy.
I often wonder about the ring. How did it get in the costume jewelry box? Did a woman buy the ring for herself and tell her husband that it was a fake so he wouldn't get angry? When she died did he put it out for sale without checking it? Who bought the giant solitaire? Was it real too?
My reason for sharing is this...check rings and other jewelry before selling. Even if it looks fake, it could be real.
It might be worthwhile to have jewelry appraised before selling it .
Yes, I gave the ring back to my mom. --Nancy
WE NEED YOUR STORY ABOUT COLLECTING. DO YOU HAVE AN INTERESTING STORY TO TELL? SEND IT TO PHIL@TIAS.COM
4. This week's Antique News
If you want to tell the world about your antiques & collectibles business, auction, club or upcoming event related to the antiques and collectibles trade, you can post it for free at
the #1 listing on Google for "Antique News" Your news release will get published online and will also appear in this newsletter so that 16,000 people can read it. To post a release, go to
1.TIAS.com wins the About.com "readers choice
award" as the Best Place to Shop Online for Collectibles
2. Antiques Show Promotions Makes Art and
Antiques File Photos Available
3. Inaugural Midwest Antiques Forum to be held
in Lancaster, Ohio May 13-15
4. VARIETY AUCTION THURS. MAR. 24, 2011
5. Auction fireworks as Dirk Soulis auctions Walt
Whitman manuscript for $57,750
6. Private collection of Euro., Amer. art glass
anchors Auctions Neapolitan Mar. 26 sale
7. BOUND TO BEAUTY
8. A Free Guide to the Royal Wedding
9. Reality TV Programming for Collectors: It’s
About the Stuff
10. Johnny Cash A Guy Who Got Lucky This
Week at LiveAuctionTalk.com
11. West Palm Beach Antiques Festival March
Event Marches in Step
12. Big multi-estate sale planned for April 1-3
by Philip Weiss Auctions
13. Artfact Live! February Auction Results Roundup
14. Recycling Your Favorite Calendar
15. RAGO’S ANNOUNCES AN APRIL 8TH -10TH
AUCTION MARATHON. 2,000 LOTS IN THREE
DAYS. NO RESERVES ON 1,400
16. Cowan’s Brings American Indian and Western
Art Auction to Proxibid
17. Rare Signed Photograph of Jesse James to
Sell at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers
18. Bertoia's presents Donald Kaufman Toy
Collection - Part V on Apr. 15-16
19. Don Presley hosts large, lively crowd at Feb.
5-6 auction of Calif. antiques firm's remaining goods
20. Three lovely Antique Sterling Bracelets
introduced into Koble Antiques by Patricia Mall Store:
Check the latest news headlines about antiques and collectibles at
MANY more stories are added several times a day. You can read the latest news now at:
5, Your Classifieds...
Time Was Antiques English Royalty Items Specialists
Hand Carved Polychrome Wood Carousel Collection
Time Was Antiques Shelley China Specialists
Mickey Mouse Wooden Rocking Horse, Mengel Playthings
Do you have antiques or collectibles you are just itching to sell? A simple classified ad in this newsletter might just be your answer. Over 15,000 readers subscribe to this newsletter. One of them just might be able to help you out. Place your ad today at:
Want to know what our advertisers think? Check out the testimonials at:
6. Newly listed items for your online shopping pleasure for Wednesday March 23, 2011 Stop by and check out today's fresh inventory at:
7, Funny Old Stuff
This is our humor section. These are humorous family stories and comments that are sent in by readers. If you have a submission you would like to share, please send it to email@example.com and we may run it in the next issue.
The stories of the exploding eggs & incinerated artichokes reminded me of one of my own early cooking experiences. The second apartment my husband & I lived in after we were married, was kind of a dump. The kitchen was small and narrow. There really wasn't room in there for a kitchenette dining set, but our landlord had "gifted us" with a beat up old worktable, which we placed on one side of the room. Anyway, one day I decided to make some beans for dinner, and after soaking them, I put them on to simmer. Knowing it would take at least an hour or more for them to finish, I grabbed a book, put my feet up on the old table, and started reading. The book (a murder mystery) was very interesting! After about half an hour I began to smell a funny, scorchy smell. I thought, oh, one of the neighbors must have burned something…I never looked up from the book. After another interval, there was a crackly sound, but it didn't interest me enough to see what was up. Finally, I began to notice the room getting very smokey, and I dropped the book, and jumped up thinking the building was on fire. Then I looked over at the stove…the beans were stuck to the bottom of the pot, and were burning! I didn't know what to do, except pour water on them, which made more smoke, which set off the smoke detector. I ran around like a maniac, trying to open the windows and doors, to let all the smoke out…at this point my neighbor came over…she was smelling the smoke too, and heard the smoke detector going off. Being an older lady, mom-type, she said, "Honey what was that?" I explained about the beans. She said, "Don't you know you have to watch those things…where did you go…did you leave the house?" I was too embarrassed to admit I was sitting right there in the kitchen, so absorbed in my book that I didn't even remember I had food on the stove! Kathleen
Do you have a funny family story you would like to share? Make someone feel good by sharing it with us. Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we may publish it here.
8. Wanted ads. Can you help?
Here are the latest wanted ads from the TIAS Exchange. Can you help someone out?
WANTED: Vintage Medical and dental Items. Especially quackery.
WANTED: Gerardo Lopez Flatware --Vintage Taxco
GET YOUR WANTED AD HERE! Just $10 and we'll send it out to 15,000 people who get this newsletter. Go to
Looking for something? Place a "Wanted" ad in this newsletter. Over 16,000 subscribers will see it. It's easy, go to:
9. A Vintage Recipe
Be sure to check out our vintage recipe archive online at:
Over 1200 wonderful vintage recipes are listed.
In the last issue Lenny requested a simple recipe for "chocolate icing that tastes fantastic and will leave a very smooth surface on a layer cake" we received the following...
Homemade chocolate Fondant icing
16 ounces white mini-marshmallows (use a good quality brand)
2 to 5 tablespoons water
2 pounds icing sugar
1/2 cup Crisco shortening
1 ounce melted quality chocolate
1 tablespoon cocoa powder for Chocolate Fondant
(NOTE: I found that if you add the melted chocolate to the melted MM Fondant it mixes up easier. Then add the cocoa powder in when you add in the powdered sugar.)
In a glass microwave safe bowl, put all of your marshmallows and the water. Microwave for 30 seconds. Remove and stir, again for 30 seconds, etc. until your marshmallows are completely melted and you can stir them easy. Start adding powder sugar 1 cup at a time. After you add 2 cups turn mixture onto a greased rolling surface. Knead the powder sugar into the marshmallows until most of it absorbed. You can now roll out your fondant for the cake you wish to cover. Grease your rolling pin, hands and rolling surface. I roll mine out until it is thin as 1/8 inch. Carol Thomas--Cullman, AL
If you enjoy these vintage recipes, you should buy a vintage cookbook from us. They make great gifts too. Take a look at:
Buy a Vintage Kitchen collectible from us. We've got lots of them here:
10. A vintage recipe request from a reader
As with collectibles, people also have very strong feelings about foods from their past. Sometimes these special recipes get lost. This section is to help people who are looking for lost recipes from their past. If you submit a request, please include the geographical region where you had this recipe.
Does anyone have a recipe for a sweet & salty popcorn that you can make at home. I had something like this at a fair many years ago. They made it in a big copper kettle. It was fantastic!. Stephie
If you can help this reader with this recipe, please forward it to email@example.com . If you have a vintage recipe request send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we might just publish it here.
Be sure to check out our vintage kitchen collectibles section online at:
11. New Online Merchants
Be sure to check out all of the fresh inventory offered by these new merchants at TIAS.
Time Travelers Antiques
Welcome to Time Travelers Antiques! My wife and I have been collectors for over 20 years. My inventory includes Art, Glass, Pottery, Figurines, dinnerware and so much more at some of the best prices on the web. FREE SHIPPING on all orders over $100
Paper Gallery Ephemera
We specialize in vintage advertising art, periodical prints, period images and collectible paper ephemera. All items are certified and registered in our archival database. We accept all credit cards and carry a 14 day return policy on all items.
6 Houses of Treasure
Welcome, we invest in fine china, collectibles and linens. Our products are priced to move, not to keep. You have the option here at 6 HOUSES OF TREASURE to purchase individual pieces, the price listed is for one.
Wow Antiques and China
I believe that in life you should do a few things well. So, I concentrate on locating hard to find and unique china, glass, pottery and pyrex. Happy shopping!!!
We have been dealing in fine china items for over 10 years. Happy repeat customers are important to us. Contact us with any concerns.
Old House Collectibles
Welcome to our Old House. We hope you enjoy your visit while we share with you our passion for collecting. We have country store, advertising tins, pottery, and
12. Helpful Resources:
1. Find an antiques or collectibles club. Nearly 2000 different clubs listed. Take a look at:
2. What's it worth? Try Kovels' free online price guide to over 600,000 antiques and collectibles. It can be found online at
3. Make money with your Web site. Join the TIAS.com affiliate program today. Go to
4. Get an online appraisal. For just $9.95 from "What's It Worth To You?"
(Not affiliated with Kovels.com)
Thanks for reading. Feel free to forward this to a friend. To subscribe to this newsletter go to:
Please note that stories and recipes from readers are not checked for accuracy. They may be edited prior to publication. For questions or comments, you can reach us at newsletter@TIAS.com ©1995-2011 TIAS.com Inc.
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