• 13 Oct
    2015

Bauer Pottery: Color for the Dinner Table and Beyond

Most people are familiar with the brightly colored ceramic dishes known as Fiesta. Homer Laughlin China of West Virginia introduced this line to an enthusiastic public in 1936. But the story of dinnerware in a range of cheery primary colors had its beginnings six years earlier, when the J A Bauer Pottery began producing its […]

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  • 12 Oct
    2015

Philco Predicta was the most Advanced Television of our Time (for a very short time)

“It’s truly TV today, from the world of tomorrow… it’s 1965… today!” This line from the 1958 Philco television ad exclaiming that the new Predicta model TV was “the most excitingly new concept in the history of television!” At the time, 1965 was a mere seven years away, and the announcer seemed confident that the […]

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  • 9 Oct
    2015

How to Detect Repaired Porcelain, Art Pottery & Clay Pieces

Antiques and collectibles enthusiasts often find themselves frequenting community charity auctions, local antique shows, neighborhood garage sales and internet web sites searching for their next “Great Find.” But buying from someone you don’t know—and may never be able to find again—is sometimes risky business. For collectors of different types of ceramic art, including porcelain figurines, […]

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  • 8 Oct
    2015

Detecting Furniture’s Cheap Tricks & Fake Finishes

Throughout most of the history of wooden furniture, there have been many attempts to disguise the true nature of the wood used. Most attempts are efforts to make a lesser wood appear to be a more expensive, more beautiful or more exotic species. It may be that the desired wood is too expensive for the […]

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  • 7 Oct
    2015

It’s All in the Marks: Dating a Wedgwood Jasperware Urn

This covered urn is an example of Wedgwood “Jasperware.” According to its owner, this one was purchased in 1980 at auction; its vintage was not listed in the auction catalog. Jasperware is a very distinctive type of stoneware with ivory/marble-looking appliques of Greek and Roman classical design on a blue, black, pink, brown red or […]

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  • 6 Oct
    2015

Dining with Antiques – State Drinking Glasses & Beverages

The states in the union take great pride in their uniqueness and individuality. There are state birds, state colors, state flowers, state trees, state songs, state fish and even state mythical creatures. But who ever knew there were state beverages? For those of us who collect, that’s pretty great, because there is also a frosted […]

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  • 5 Oct
    2015

Changing Horses in Mid-Stream – Putting down the Chef Knife and Picking up the Gavel

I met a guy once who referred to himself as “one of the undesirable unemployables.” I had no idea why he would call himself that; he was a charming guy with a good reputation and was a hard-working entrepreneur. But in the late 2000s, when the recession hit, I was forced to sell my business […]

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  • 2 Oct
    2015

Rinker on Collectibles: Creating a Personal Connection to Collectibles

As I continue to sort through the dozens of archival file boxes residing three rows deep along one wall of my office and in a shelved storage room built especially to hold them, I am overwhelmed by a simple thought—I do not want to throw this out, “this” being a broad term for almost everything. […]

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  • 30 Sep
    2015

No Rubber Bands: Preserving Game Cards

It’s happened to anyone who has ever bought a vintage board or card game from an antiques dealer, a thrift store or a yard sale: You open the box, the contents are complete and organized as promised . . . but there’s something wrong with the cards. Most commonly, you’ll find the cards wrapped tightly […]

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  • 29 Sep
    2015

Fred’s Junk Drawer: Small Tips that don’t Fit Anywhere Else

This column is intended to be like the kitchen drawer everyone has that is packed with indispensable items (they must be indispensable, or you would have cleaned them out by now) but you can’t always remember where they are or they are too much trouble to dig out so you just struggle on without them. […]

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