|EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2724 - January 24, 2012 - ISSN 1539-5065 4 of 5|
Now that 2011 is over, antiques and collectibles sites are looking back and summing up the top searches and other trends for the year. Today, EcommerceBytes takes a look at Kovels, TIAS.com (The Internet Antique shop) and WorthPoint / GoAntiques to see what's up, what's down, and what's surprising.
Surprises and Lessons from Five Years of Kovels "Top Ten"
Kovels noted that of particular interest to collectors are the Royal Bayreuth figural pitchers, like one with cards and a devil handle that sold for $585 at a Morphy auction (pictured here).
Kovels Top 10 Antiques & Collectibles Searches for 2011
The biggest surprise is that glass is number nine this year, and has never been listed before, said Kovel. "Does that mean new interest in glass, old and new? I can't guess, but the modern designers are getting bids at the auctions," she added.
Kovel said in terms of jewelry, "costume is selling at almost the price of precious jewelry," and "top-maker watches are way up (it's a man thing)."
Another surprising development, said Kovel, was that the big news in sales this year was the Asian trend: "Very high prices, way over estimate for everything old and Asian." However, she said that trend doesn't show in their Top 10 list, because Kovels does not have a Chinese category in their listings. "The biggest jump in price was rhinoceros horn carvings," she said. "In 2008, no one even listed them; now they are the lead at the auctions, selling for hundreds of thousands."
Where the Bargains Are and What's Evergreen
Hummel, limited editions, even Christmas plates, are very, very slow sellers, but low-priced holiday items like jack-o-lanterns and Xmas ornaments sell well, she said.
"Comic characters like Superman and robots and space toys sell well, sometimes as much as $1,000 for the rare toy," said Kovel, but "small seems out. Little English 18th-century porcelains are half what they were five years ago. So is Staffordshire. Big, colorful and "statement" pieces do well. Blenko glass, Italian glass, if big, bring high prices," she said, noting that, "Decorators like huge."
Folk art is also good if big, said Kovel. "Bottles are coming back and prices are higher this year. Advertising, if big or rare, is getting top dollar." And "anything iron is up in price, including pots and pans, doorstops, tools, bookends."
"So in general," Kovel said, "prices are down if the item isn't almost unique, very nostalgic or big."
Mid-Range Suffers Says TIAS.com
Also, practical items such as dinnerware seem to be doing well, said Davies. "I think people justify these purchases by saying they are for everyday use and not a luxury item."
TIAS Top 20 Selling Antiques and Collectibles for 2011
Some of the highlights from TIAS's 2011 list: from 2010, Jewelry moved up to #5 from #7 on the list; Paper & Ephemera moved up to #4 from #9; and Porcelain & Pottery moved up to #10 from #13. The top three, China & Dinnerware, Glass, and Vintage Sewing, showed no movement from 2010. Coins & Currency moved down to #8 from #4, and Holiday & Seasonal moved down to #7 from #5. New to the 2011 list were Lamps & Lighting and Textiles.
WorthPoint/GoAntiques Top Searches for 2011
In terms of the top trends for the year, WorthPoint/GoAntiques Spokesperson Debra Young says they are seeing "a more industrial look; i.e. warehouse/industrial lighting and steel desks," and a moving away from "mid-century modern."
WorthPoint/GoAntiques Top 10 Searches for 2011
Could the latter mean the angular lines popularized by TV's "Mad Men" are starting to cool down? However, #10 on the list would suggest Don Draper still has some influence on the collectibles market: a Roulette cigarette dispenser, which Young says she thinks made the top 10 "because it looks like the cigarette dispenser on AMC's "Mad Men."".
Lastly, "the Victorian look is also starting to make a comeback," says Young.
They are also seeing the repurposing of items for different uses, such as "turning steamer trunks into coffee tables, or suitcases cut to make shelving," she says.
About the Author
About the author:
Julia Wilkinson is the author of "The eBay Price Guide" (No Starch Press, 2006) and "eBay Top 100 Simplified Tips & Tricks" (Wiley, 2004-6). Her free "Yard Salers" newsletter is at available at YardSalers.net where you will also find her latest ebook, Flip It Again.
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