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Not ebay,but real life auctions

(60 Posts)
Mirage Mon 12-Nov-12 14:47:51

I'm going to an auction tomorrow,and went to the viewing this morning. took along some bits and pieces that I don't want to risk on ebay as I don't want to loose them to some scammer.They couldn't value them on the spot so I've made an appointment for next month.

.So I went for a wander around town and spotted an antiquarian bookshop,one of my items is a book that I can find no info on anywhere.It appears on none of the normal book websites,although other books by the same publisher do.No one has bought or sold one from what I can see,and although there are collectors,no one has one listed in their collections.So I showed it to the guy in the bookshop who said that he knew nothing about it,but offered me £30 on the spot.I declined and he told me that it was probably worth around £80+ in the open market.he said that it was in lovely condition and collectors would be very keen to get their hands on it,and has asked me to let him know if I find out anything else about it or sell it.

He asked me where I'd got it from and nearly fell over when I told him it was 10p from a car boot sale a few weeks back.grin It'll be interesting to see what the auctioneers say next month.

Ifancyanewname Thu 15-Nov-12 19:55:13

Wow I'm impressed!! I hate to think of the valuable things I have cast my untrained eye over!! I must spend more time researching what to look out for. We should keep this thread going, share what we have found and hopefully share some knowledge too!

mrscumberbatch Thu 15-Nov-12 19:57:15

Mirage, hard to give tips as you just have to 'know' what something is when you see it.
My family are all jewellers, so the ridiculous and beautiful things that I was exposed to as a child were fabulous and eye opening. You sponge up all of the ridiculous information that passes through your ears and without realising you can recognise/spot a hallmark from 20 feet away wink

A lot of reading/ fantasy shopping lol.

I get a fair bit of mourning jewellery, I have a fabulous victorian woven hair bracelet with gold beads through it. It's so delicate, and gives me the willies slightly but I feel privileged to own it for a short while as it's such a sentimental thing.

I have photos that I use for auctioning off things (Bonhams) - although I'm not up to date as helping DP launch his business at the end of this month. (Completely unrelated and useless for Mumsnetters as it's moustache wax!!) I'll dig out a few and stick them on ze profile.

I had a lovely story recently, was asked to go to a house clearance as an elderly lady had passed away and grandchildren were in clearing the property and wanted a few appraisals. There was a beautiful bureau, in terrible nick, with the most beautiful drawers knobs/handles. So I opened the drawer to have a look and inside there was 20 diamond/sapphire/ruby rings. The look of shock on their faces was incredible.

All of the rings were edwardian, but varying styles. Seemingly she had told the Grandchildren before she died that all of her Great Grandchildren were as precious to her as diamonds which is why she didn't need to wear any fancy rings. She had 20 Great Grandchildren exactly, so I think she had planned it.

It was lovely, I had a wee tear in my eye lol.

Ifancyanewname Thu 15-Nov-12 19:57:35

Oh my god, just googled the swan to see what it is you mean and I have seen those before, definately! I looked at mourning jewellery, very interesting looking, I like it too, really interesting pieces and like you say, if its not worth anything I'd happily keep it.

Mirage Thu 15-Nov-12 20:19:13

Yes,it is hard to explain how you 'know' stuff.I'll often sit watching an antiques programme and look at something and say 'that's an xxxx',and be right.DH has this expression on his face shock.A couple were looking at a contraption this morning at the auction I went to,and didn't know what it was,I did though,it was a bottle jack,and told them.My favourite was the couple who thought a Larsen trap was a guinea pig cage.grin

I think the mourning jewellery goes back to when I was a goth.I've read about the huge shops devoted to mourning during the 19th century and it is fascinating,all the different degrees of mourning and the rules of what could and could not be worn.

What a lovely story,about the rings.I wonder what I'll be able to hand on to my descendents?

mrscumberbatch Thu 15-Nov-12 20:46:36

Mirage, maybe it is a 'goth' thing? A lot of the female antiques dealers that I know were teenage goths. We all joke about hanging around graveyards etc lol.

I love the 'rain man' at Antiques Roadshow idea lol. It drives DP barmy as I am really competitive about saying it out loud before the presenter does wink Quite sad really!

I have started my first 'first generation' heirloom! My Dad, in a pique of madness, commissioned a rocking horse by a not particularly well known local sculptor/artisan type back in the 1980s.
This chap is now well venerated amongst the circles he moves in, has been a huge part of local medieval and victorian restorations and, I think, is now working overseas on something.
DD gets it for xmas this year. I have so many lovely memories of it as a child, and for drying my clothes on as a student wink

Mirage Thu 15-Nov-12 21:15:55

Awww! How lovely for your dd.I always wanted a proper rocking horse,we had one my dad made,but it wasn't the traditional sort.We have one that DH's dad made for the girls,and we'll keep that forever,as he died a few years after finishing it.We have the real thing now,hence my need to make some money out of my hobby.By the weekend we might have another one.Eek!

I'm smiling to myself at the thought of a host of ex goth antique experts wafting about looking

ontheedgeofwhatever Thu 15-Nov-12 21:22:46

What a lovely thread.

Sadly I don't seem to have the eye for these things. My mum does though. She picked up a first edition copy of Casino Royale for 15p at a car boot sale and sold it for £600!!

mrscumberbatch Thu 15-Nov-12 21:29:02

Mirage that's even nicer that they're home made. How talented! (And sad, what a lovely thing to remember him by though.)

Multiplying horses. I understand. Sort of wink. My SIL's are competitive riders and want to buy DD a pony. I'll be banished to every auction house in the country if they go ahead.

(How can one wee pony be so ruddy expensive!?!?!?)

I think that the ex goth antique experts could be an amazing TV series. We can appraise your valuables whilst applying eyeliner a'la Siouxsie. There's call for it, I'm sure!

Ontheedge- cracking find. Whenever I go to boot sales I'm too blinded by all the shite to see these things!! grin

sixlostmonkeys Fri 16-Nov-12 09:23:44

Antiques AND horses all in one thread!? Could threads get any better? grin

I love the idea of the Goth Antique road show smile

The stories behind things are what makes it. Any expert will tell you that is what adds to the value, but even if it doesn't add monetary value it does make the job more interesting.
One of the interesting aspects of buying/selling books is what you find inside the books. I have come across all sorts of things - old bus tickets, photos, ration books, letters, un-used book tokens and may favourite so far; an 8 page hand written poem from 1777. The author has written 'Scarbro Sept 26 - 1777' at the end so my intentions are to contact the local historical society and see if they can shed any light on it. You should see the writing! Oh it's beautiful.

sixlostmonkeys Fri 16-Nov-12 09:49:35

I bought a number of boxes of books at an auction a couple of years ago. They had all come from the same house/family, as names were neatly written inside each book. I could tell the previous owners were avid readers as lots of the books contained newspaper clippings with related articles to the subject matter.

There were 2 names in the books which I surmise were father and son; the father dating to the start of the 1900s. As I worked through the books I found myself feeling I was getting to know these people. I certainly admired their choice of reading. Eventually I came across some books that contained newspaper clippings. These related to the two men, especially the younger. I discovered where these men had worked (a place 3 miles from me) who they had married, who they were best-man to etc. Then I found an article about the death of the younger man. I admit I shed a tear as I read this article. Of course I already knew this man had passed, but reading it somehow put an end to my brief acquaintance with him. This man had owned a car, at a time when few people did. He spent his weekends taking patients of the local hospital on little outings. During the week he would leave his car at the hospital for anyone to use and would cycle to work.
.... I'm filling up again sad

mrscumberbatch Fri 16-Nov-12 13:44:26

Sixlostmonkeys, that is lovely. What a nice chap. I think it's nice to remember those who didn't think that they'd be remembered!

Are you joining the Goth Antiques Rd Show as well? There's no dress code so long as it's black wink

Mirage Fri 16-Nov-12 14:08:19

What a lovely story Sixlostmonkeys A friend of mine said that she finds auctions really sad because someone's lifelong possessions are all jumbled up for people to poke through.I said that my point of view was that they'd make their way to a new home where they'd be loved and appreciated once again,so I didn't find them sad.

I've just had the catalogue through for a sale on Tuesday,that I hadn't planned to go to,but,oooh,there's some lovely looking stuff that I'd be interested in.[children's books,textiles,whips ect] I'm trying to work out how I can get there and back and also get time to go to the job I'm meant to be doing on Tuesday.Luckily they lots I've got my eye on are fairly early on so I might be able to swing it.I can't bid online because I've no internet access at work,plus half the fun is being there.

Mrscumberbatch do you ever find anything worthwhile in those boxes of costume jewellery that go under the hammer? I know that some costume jewellery is valuable in it's own right,but wonder if the valuers do miss things that are lumped in with the dross.

I've been at work all morning and still haven't been through my purchases from yesterday yet,I'm itching too,but have got to go and get the pony in and tacked up before the dds come home from school,otherwise it'll be too dark to ride.

Ifancyanewname Fri 16-Nov-12 16:14:29

I've always wondered if anyone finds anything worth any vaule at auctions, I always think the people running then have a rummage through first so anything worth anything will be picked out! Wow, what a story sixlostmonkeys, lovely that you got to have a peek into that mans life.
Mirage, I really had to smile at the things you might be interested books, whips grin

Mirage Fri 16-Nov-12 17:32:42

He he! Yes,it is rather eclectic.grin I was thinking of bidding on a lot of 12 whips on Tuesday [they sell on for a very good price] and in the box was a bullwhip. Hmmm! Can imagine putting that on ebay.

By the law of averages,things must be missed/undervalued all the time.I've got a small picture that came in a box of misc over 20 years ago.Until last year,I thought it was a print,but one day I got curious and googled the name of the gallery on the backing paper,which turned out to be a very well regarded one,in the west country,a bit of the paper flaked away and I saw that it was backed by wood and was watercolour paper rather than thin print paper.I'm going to get it looked at because I can't see the signature properly without removing the frame,which I daren't do! I've never really liked it,only kept it because it looked nice on the bathroom wall in our old house [a watercolour in a steamy bathroomshock.In all likelihood it is nothing special,but is interesting to research all the same.

It is funny what will sell and what won't. I'm selling a lot of crochet table mats at the minute,but linen embroidered ones don't shift.Anything gothy sells very well too.

Ifancyanewname Fri 16-Nov-12 18:27:41

I do a lot of ebaying of clothes and I love the thrill of it, things you are sure will sell well sometimes dont and then other things you almost dont list because you are sure they wont sell end up doing really well, there is no logic. You have inspired me to try and find some auctions!!! I'm off to a sale at a local private school tomorrow so hopefully I'll find some interesting stuff!!

mrscumberbatch Fri 16-Nov-12 19:08:30

Mirage, you wouldn't believe the costume jewellery gems that get lumped in with boxes of tat. French pastes, bakelite etc. Not to mention the lovely pearls that are assumed as synthetic, or broken strings of pearls (which are easily mended/salvaged for other things).

Auction houses tend not to miss much though as their overheads are ridiculous. Bidding for random boxes on police auctions is where it's at. It is so fun, and easy to get carried away--> and you have NO idea what you're buying. (Box of dildos. Wtf?)

I didn't think there's be value in whips. Who knew?!

Ifancyanewname Fri 16-Nov-12 19:11:59

How do you find out about police auctions mrscumberbatch? I've always wondered about those

mrscumberbatch Fri 16-Nov-12 19:22:18

I keep an eye out on the police stations websites, they sometimes get announced in an advert in local press too.

Mirage Fri 16-Nov-12 19:30:31

Interesting.I can restring beads/pearls and replace or mend broken clasps,so might have to look into that.I've never been to a police auction,but it sounds fun,I like the idea of not knowing what you've got.

Yes,whips,especially driving whips and hunting whips are very popular and can cost upwards of £150 for a nice one.More and more people drive their ponies so it is an expanding market.Other things that have a market are bowler and top hats,anything at all to do with side saddles.

I can't tell you how much I'm enjoying being able to discuss this sort of thing with like minded

mrscumberbatch Fri 16-Nov-12 19:42:07

Police auction is hit and miss, but so long as it's 'spare' money it's fine.

One month it was a box of dildos (not in boxes. Yikes. To the dump Pronto! The guys that worked there must have been thinking strange things about me.)

Another month it was umpteen DVD's and a broken string of pearls (that cost £30 for the refurb etc and then sold for £350. Original box cost me £40.)

I've seen the hat madness first hand. People going MENTAL bidding hundreds over a tatty old top hat. No idea what it's provenance was but I felt quite sane in that moment wink

Mirage Fri 16-Nov-12 19:52:52

I'm snorting at you driving to the dump with a box of dildoes!

I saw hat madness on Tuesday.There was a lot with a reverse glass picture,which I'm always looking out for,in a box with all sorts of bits,including a Dents Bowler.The picture was damaged beyond repair,so I thought that if the whole box was a reasonable price,I'd buy it for the hat alone.Ha! I think it went for over £90.There was another one yesterday which went for silly money too.

mrscumberbatch Fri 16-Nov-12 22:47:51

takes notes- Get into Hats Jeezo.

My computer history must have looked awful mirage as I googled about a billion pages of 'Dildo/vibrator recycling'.


Ifancyanewname Fri 16-Nov-12 23:54:21

Ha ha ha ha ha, brilliant....I hope I'm never in a position to have a load of dildos to get rid of....pleased to hear you tried to go about it in an eco friendly way smile

Ifancyanewname Fri 16-Nov-12 23:55:05

I'm sure you could have ebayed "used dildos" I should think they would have fetched good money, have you ever searched "well worn shoes"??!?!?!?

mrscumberbatch Sat 17-Nov-12 00:12:54

Only one thing to say "BLEURGH!" <sick emoticon>

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