Resist the “Call to The Mall” By Gifting Antique Treasures This Holiday Season

Resist “the call to the mall” when doing your holiday shopping!

There’s no doubt you are in the throes of holiday shopping right now.  The “call to the mall” usually starts just before Thanksgiving, but some retail destinations are set up for Christmas spending as early as September!  Picking out new toys, baubles, and accessories for friends, colleagues, and loved ones seems like a rite of passage this time of year.  But have you considered gifting those important to you with antique, or vintage goods instead?  There are so many reasons this makes sense… here are four key ones for your consideration.

Quality and design. 

When you want to give the best, go antique. It is hard to argue that many things made 50 or 100 years ago – that are still around – were produced with extraordinary integrity and a nod to aesthetics and quality. Yes, beautiful glass and porcelain items are still being manufactured in 2018. However, have you ever held a piece of real vintage Stueben crystal in your hands?  Or felt the surface of a 1920s era Rookwood vase? Or seen the light coming through an original Pierpont or Tiffany lamp?  Hardly anything made today compares to the pleasure or experience these precious antique treasures can generate in today’s hurry up, electronic world.

This gorgeous vintage signed Steuben glass owl sold for $50 in August 2018.

Nod to the environment.

Whatever your feelings about recycling, we can all agree that there is no “Planet B” when it comes to the health of our globe.  Antiques and vintage items are the ultimate recycled treasures and are good for the Earth as well as the soul.  Lovely turn of last century Teddy bears and dolls belong on display and cherished for their legacy – not in landfills. These great playthings from times past have universal appeal and resonate with men, women, and children of all ages. And most are exchanged without complicated and unnecessary packaging… further saving waste and disposal efforts.

Who wouldn’t fall in love with this guy?! This 1907 Steiff Teddy Bear sold for over $2400 in November 2018.

Share the love. 

If a category of antiques or collectibles calls to you – pay your passion forward! Did you enjoy plowing through your Mom’s or Grandmother’s jewelry box as a kid, trying on their real and faux rings, necklaces, and bracelets?  That might be one of the reasons vintage bling catches your eye today!  Why not introduce your hobby to a special young person in your life this holiday season. You never know – you might just inspire the next generation of collectors with your thoughtful act of kindness.

This glorious vintage brooch sold for $44.99 in November 2018.


Finally, things often come down to dollars and cents, or sense, in this case! It is true that many important antique and vintage items cost a pretty penny.  But many do not, and are actually less expensive than comparable items made today.  For example, it is possible to find gorgeous 20th century furniture and decorative items for a song – especially at auctions and estate sales. These sorts of “foundational” pieces are great holiday presents for folks just setting up their first homes, or for those feathering second or vacation homes. And, of course, a gift made right from your own private collection requires no cash outlay at all!

This mid-century modern Art Deco wood coffee table sold for $288.75 in November 2018.

Happy hunting and happy holidays!!

Rebekah Kaufman is a Worthologist who specializes in vintage Steiff and other European plush collectibles.  You can follow her blog, which focuses on vintage Steiff finds, Steiff antiquing and travel adventures, international Steiff happenings, and the legacy and history of the Steiff company at  Sign up for her Steiff newsletter by contacting her directly at

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