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Because there is so much choice of material, there are specialist collectors for all sorts of advertisements from engraved 1700's trade cards to pottery Guinness toucans, labels, posters, large enamelled metal street 'puffs' as they became known in the 1800's, and shop signs such as barbers' poles and opticians' spectacles. There are calendars, book marks and paper weights, clothes hangers, shoe trees, thermometers, ashtrays, biscuit tins, bar furnishings and beer mats, and among the first attempts to sell through attractive packaging was the pot lid.

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Human beings have been adorning or improving their looks since the creation of time. From the need to remove unwanted body hair, to applying facial powders and lipstick to improve ones look, beauty has always played an important role in fashion and human development. Beauty, hygiene and grooming equipment is generally a neglected area of collecting. No longer do we use or manufacture beautiful cut glass silver topped perfume bottles because they have been replaced by modern packaging. Be that as it may, modern packaging is functional and practical rather than beautiful and useful. 



Ceramics optIn a typical home there are likely to be more objects made of ceramics – earthenware, stoneware and porcelain – than any other single category of material. Most will be 1900's and 2000's, a fair proportion will be late Victorian and perhaps a few pieces will be earlier.

Oriental ceramics have a far richer history than those in the west. Fine porcelain was made in China from at least the 800's and started to reach Europe around 1600's.

Despite their inherent fragility, many early Chinese pieces survive and are keenly collected.

fall antiques 2018 3 smallslide optThe lure of antique timepieces lies in their combination of art and technology. Visual clues can help date the item and identify its mechanics.

Barometers and thermometers still have their place in forecasting the weather, but early examples are now collector´s items too.

Scientists, astronomers, sailor and the general public employed a range of microscopes, telescopes and other magnifying instruments as diverse as the stargazers´six-footer to pearl encrusted opera glasses.

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Our customers are our most valuable asset. We understand the apprehension that people have when buying online from a company they have not dealt with before. Because of this we openly publish our policies to reassure our customers they are dealing with a trusted and professional company. 


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You will notice we write or host articles and videos about the natural world. What you may ask has that got to do with antiques?

Both the natural world and antiques need to be conserved, each in their different ways. Once we loose our antiques or the natural world, they have gone for ever, one could say they become as dead as a dodo.





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We need to consume liquids regularly to prevent dehydration, and a whole industry has evolved to provide goods for our every needs. From wine bottles to wine boxes, corkscrews to ring pull cans, glasses and decanters, beer mats to ceramic ashtrays, special words to special laws, basically an area that is truly a collectors paradise.

KangTable 56a018875f9b58eba4aeeab7One of the delights of antique furniture as with all practical antiques, is that it is a tangible link with the past. Sitting at a 1700´s desk, it is easy to imagine an earlier owner leaning on the same surface, struggling with an important letter. An ink stain on a well-rubbed edge adds to the sense of continuity. The way antique furniture carries the mantle of age is one of its appealing characteristics. Whilst ceramics and glass are little altered by the years, a piece of furniture changes in subtle ways, its timbers gradually shrink and mellow through handling, polishing and exposure. This slow maturing gives it a unique patina that cannot be matched – or reproduced – by the finest new pieces.

Unknown4The idea of an object having value due to its age is only about 100 years old. It may only be a coincidence that this corresponds to when the legal definition of an antique was established. Before that, except in the case of Greek and Roman antiquities, items were judged purely on their artistic merit, or how fashionable they were, age meant very little. Very often furniture and other important works of art filtered down through the social strata as the landed gentry refurnished their houses. This frequently involved a complete updating, replacing not only the decorations but occasionally remodelling the fabric of the building as well. Some outdated or unfashionable furniture and other items were banished to the attic or the servants´quarters or simply dumped, to be recycled by the estate workers. Passed on down the centuries, and often altered on the way, these objects eventually find their way onto the market, sometimes without the current owner appreciating the value. The anticipation that an undiscovered treasure may be lurking in the next shop is part of the thrill of collecting.

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Glass has a magical quality born of its transition from sand and other minerals to vessels of transparent delicacy. Barring breakage, scouring pads and dishwashers, glass is wonderfully resistant to age, neither warping like furniture, nor tarnishing like metal. It can look the same after 200 years as it did when as new the shape and style reflecting the customs and habits of the time.



Borg Lofotr Viking museum Lofoten norway 2 1 49e9ea11 7ab3 483f 847f 2687e1ed1f71 optEating and drinking customs and habits help to define who we are. The Ale Warmer or Muller is a good example of a once common every day article that was developed to satisfy the desire for warm ale on a cold winter´s night. Even the tables where we eat our food and the chairs upon which we sit have evolved over time according to changing customs, habits and fashion. The very scenery and environment in which we live all influence who and what we are. Many will romanticise about the good old days, and for some they were just that, but for the many it was a time of drudgery, toil and hard work for little gain or financial reward.

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The value of jewellery depends on the quality of the materials used to make it, its design, maker and condition, and the prevailing fashion and taste.

Rare gems of the highest quality are usually a good investment because the political and physical problems involved in mining them and the scarcity of fine stones means that supply is unlikely to exceed demand. Diamonds are the exception as their supply is controlled by an international cartel to maintain prices, but demand can always be fulfilled so no dramatic rise in pieces is likely.

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Metals are a natural and abundant resource that is both malleable and extremely durable, which makes them suitable for all manner of practical purposes. Pure metals, such as copper, iron, lead and tin, and various alloys including brass, bronze and pewter have been used around the world for thousands of years. Metals have played a significant role in the development of human civilization, with bronze and iron used to make early tools and weapons. Drinking vessels and utensils for making and eating food have been fashioned from metal since ancient times. Pewter and spelter were inexpensive alternatives to more precious metals. 

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The story of style can be said to be the tracing of the strands that mesh to give each age its distinctive look, from the skills and materials available, to the changes in life style and income from buyers zest for the new, to designers vision of beauty.