View Full Version : Antiques question

10-24-2010, 10:47 AM
Hopefully someone well-versed with the antiques world can help me.

I'm looking for a category of items sold in an antique shop that weekend hunters (self-proclaimed connoisseurs) would think was an incredible find, but is really quite ordinary. Not necessarily a scam, though that might work as well.

Also, in the novel, there's an abandoned house that was decorated in the mid to late 1920s. I'd like the MC to name-drop regarding a built-in bar in the salon. Designer or style, any info would work. It should be something considered ultra-modern at the time and sophisticated.

Thanks in advance for any help.

10-24-2010, 05:20 PM
The 1920s were the beginning of the Art Deco period. Typically, Art Deco furniture design is bold, with sweeping curves, geometric shapes, steps, sunbursts, and the use of materials like stainless steel, chrome, wood inlay and bakelite (an early form of plastic).

Googling brings up lots of great images (http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&source=imghp&biw=850&bih=726&q=%22art+deco%22+bar&gbv=2&aq=f&aqi=g4&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai=) of Art Deco bars. Maybe something like this beauty (http://turquoise-la.blogspot.com/2008/07/art-deco-bar.html)? That's not a built-in bar but a freestanding piece of furniture, but you could adapt the design ideas.


10-24-2010, 05:21 PM
Depression glass would be fine for the type of "antique", and there are a number of other recent, mass-produced things that would fit, including other types of glassware.

Kenra Daniels
10-24-2010, 05:59 PM
Another vote for depression glass. There are a lot of modern knockoffs that are easily confused for the real thing unless you really know your stuff. My mother collects both depression glass and carnival glass, and she's seen a great deal of modern knockoffs being sold as the real thing in antique shops.

10-24-2010, 06:32 PM
Thanks for the help everyone. Depression glass seems like a much better avenue to pursue than I was thinking.

Georgina, that bar is exactly what I was picturing! I could easily describe it as a built-in. Second result on a google search, too... How did I miss that?

10-24-2010, 07:27 PM
You may want to explore things like Match Safes or wrought iron candle sticks e.g "sticking Tommies" used in mines and wooden barns. http://bakercoantiques.com/ItemPictures/7304b.jpg

Majolica match safes are especially intricate. Combining an item not often found in a home today with a beautiful art form often blinds hunters to its questionable provenance.


10-24-2010, 08:13 PM
Depression Glass is an excellent choice - not only are some varieties still made that are almost indistinguishable from antiques, but some colors are very common and some are very rare.

Likewise with some pottery - Roseville and McCoy are known for their sometimes elaborate pieces and rare color combinations.

10-25-2010, 12:56 AM
Check out Tiara glassware. It's all over EBay. If I remember correctly they had old original molds for sandwich glass, etc. that was made during the depression. They were popular for some years (my mom used to sell it), but they put it out in colors that weren't available during the Depression. I've been in antique shops more than once where they've tried to sell me Tiara as something "great great grandma" used to own, when I knew (from my mother selling it) that it was in fact Tiara.

I think they finally sold out to Fenton or Fostoria, but not positive.

FYI, the Sweet Pear pattern was one of the more popular/expensive pieces that many wanted.

There are all kind of tricksters out there. I once bought a small table, like an end table that I didn't discover until after I bought it that had actually been two tables - they took the legs & bottom half off one and put a top off another on it. I never thought to turn it upside down to look. It's pretty much "buyer beware" - I certainly learned my lesson.

Tsu Dho Nimh
10-30-2010, 08:15 PM
How "big" do you want this find to be, in dollar value? And how "common"?

And what does this have to do with the plot? Does it have to be sold for pennies when they thought it would pay off the mortgage?