To the untrained eye, the difference between an item that is truly an antique and one that is just a reproduction can be hard to determine. Unfortunately, there is no one way to make shopping for antiques foolproof. However, the more you do it, the easier it becomes to spot authentic items, and in the meantime, there are some signs anyone can keep an eye out for.
Abundance Of An Item
One thing that makes antiques so popular is that not everyone has them. True antiques are rare and unique because they weren’t mass produced and because many of them do not stand the test of time. If you see the same item in multiple shops, booths, or auctions, it was probably part of a reproduction that happened at some point in the past.
No Real Wear and Tear
It’s rare than an item is going to last decades or even centuries without a ding or a stain. True, some signs of aging can be faked, but if you dig a little deeper, you can find what you’re looking for. For example, if you look at a wooden dresser that has been destressed on the outside, it could be a brand new piece of furniture made to look old. However, if the drawer runners are worn down from years of use, it’s probably an older piece.
Know Your Markings
Most manufacturers have some sort of symbol that indicates they are authentic, whether it’s a signature, stamp, label, or serial number. Become an expert on the items that interest you, but understand that these signs can also be falsely reproduced.
Look For Irregularity
In many cases, the antique was handmade but the reproduction came from a machine. Look for irregularities such as asymmetrical sides, hand stitching, or furniture made from multiple types of wood.
It’s Too Good To Be True.
If it’s ridiculously underpriced, you’re either buying it from someone who doesn’t know the value or an unreliable seller who is trying to falsify the history of the item. Without having your item professionally appraised, there’s no way to know!
If you have questions about the authenticity of your antiques, Four Seasons Auction Gallery can help. Call us today at (470) 589-1653.