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Tips for Antiquing in the High Country

Those who crave the thrill of the hunt will love browsing through the many antique malls and stores located in High Country.

Antiquing is now a popular trend enjoyed by people of all ages, styles and backgrounds. What was once “old” is now new again, and this trend is coming back stronger than ever. Here are some helpful hints to finding the best, most valuable pieces:

  • Generally, an item is considered “antique” if it is at least 100 years old. (This doesn’t apply to antique cars, which become “antique” after 25 years. “Vintage” refers to the highest quality of a past era. “Collectibles” are generally less than 100 years old and could be considered possible antiques of the future.
  • Stay clear of tags stating that an item is “in the style of” or “of the same period as” a certain age. This usually means the item is a reproduction.
  • Antique stores change their inventory constantly. If you’re looking for a specific item, pick up a business card while you’re at the store so that you can check back to see if they’ve gotten your specialty item.
  • Talk to the dealer. Ask how old a piece is, inquire how he or she came across it, and see if they know any history behind the item. This is a great way to test how well the owner knows the antiquing business as well as a fun way to learn more about your future purchase.
  • Take your time. Often antique stores have so much merchandise on display, it’s easy to miss something, so browse slowly and look closely. There could be something spectacular hiding behind that retro sewing machine.
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