Be an Expert in Collecting Antique Chinese Porcelain Pieces

526947 chinese sugar pot Be an Expert in Collecting Antique Chinese Porcelain Pieces

Chinese sugar pot

Chinese Porcelain is renowned the world over. Since the time that Marco Polo has marvelled about the exquisiteness of these fine Chinese pieces and up till now with globalization which has made the world smaller, Chinese Porcelain has held an important place in history, in beauty and art. Even in the history books, stories are told of the presence of these pieces which has graced palaces, castles, temples, and which has become synonymous with royalty, dynasties, the ruling class, and the upper crust of society.

Chinese porcelain is considered as pieces of art with the delicacy of the way that it is made, most often than not, made by hand, and bearing the most elegant and intricate of designs which are usually hand painted. Even the commercial ones that are made now still involve a painstaking process that would take longer than other commercial pieces of furniture and art.

For any antique collector, having antique Chinese Porcelain pieces would most likely be considered the gems of their collections. Imagine having a Porcelain vase coming from the Ming Dynasty or a set of Porcelain plates that date all the way back to the Tang Dynasty. Definitely, this would not only be a subject of great interest which could elicit conversations of awe and wonder, but also a cause of one’s admiration.

So how do you build your own collection of these art items? Or what pieces can you add to your antique collection?  What are the things that you should consider so you become an instant expert in collecting Chinese Porcelain?

809688 ginger jars Be an Expert in Collecting Antique Chinese Porcelain Pieces

Chinese Porcelain jars

For real valuable Chinese Porcelain pieces, go to trusted antique collection houses like Sotheby’s and Christies in the United States or to auction houses that may be found in your locale. In other parts of the world, there are also art and antique collectors who have their own shops and they would usually hold a piece or two of these Chinese specialties. Be careful as today, there are also a lot of imitations which may actually resemble the real antique things.

There is really no better way than to really consult antique collectors as to the authenticity of the piece that you intend on buying. It may be a bit more expensive than going on your own such as finding one on EBay or other Internet shopping sites but it would eliminate the fear and hassle of finding out that what you have bought is actually a fake copy.

Antique Chinese Porcelain pieces usually would date back or have its origins from one of the Chinese Dynasties. As such, if something has captured your fancy, be able to have the shopkeeper or owner tell you all the information he has about it and consult the books.

Go on Encyclopaedias, of which some good ones are online, and read about the characteristics of art work, furniture, and designs that would come from the particular dynasty. Look for pictures or images of other similar designs and compare the time and Chinese era that they would come from. Basically, what you would have to do is to do your research and this may actually be part of the fun.

Some Tricks and Tips For Your Next Antique Hunting Trip

Reclining Buddha 300x145 Some Tricks and Tips For Your Next Antique Hunting Trip

Reclining Buddha

Antiques give off an unmistakable aura of old world charm and always add a certain mystery and glamour to any place, in particular to a home. The world over, antiques are bought and collected for its classic design. Antique pieces are usually bought and collected for its classic design and elegance. Usually antique pieces are of higher value and most of them time become more expensive as it becomes older.

Many stories have been told of how antique pieces are subject to high profile thefts and also as the cause of family feuds. It has also been know how some people have paid millions for these pieces of furniture at public auctions such as the famous Sotheby’s and Christie’s. It can also come to a point that antiques may already be considered priceless such as in the case of family heirlooms.

With all of this, it is quite a wise investment to find and purchase your own antiques for your own collection. This may come as a form of hobby for you as this requires developing a keen eye for choosing out what is good. This may also serve as a business as antiquarians the world over are always out to look for antiques that can catch their eye.

In general, antiques include but are not limited to pieces of furniture, cars and automobiles, clothing and fashion items, household items, general equipment, books, magazines, and pretty much everything under the sun that anyone would have interest in.

185622 oriental dragon Some Tricks and Tips For Your Next Antique Hunting Trip

Oriental dragon

For your antique hunting trip, bear in mind that the best places that you can look into are vintage shops, rummage sales, and flea markets. Going to these places sometime maybe a hassle as these are usually out of the way and not found in the more common shopping parts of the city. There are some stores that are found in the shopping district that would specialize in antiques and these are usually the higher end ones and would be pricier. In the more upscale antique stores, expect that you would get help from the attendants or the shop owners themselves.

They may usually be able to give you information on the antiques that they have for sale which include the actual age of the item, the history behind it, who has owned it, the actual use of the item, the condition of the item, its rarity, its value in terms of the current market price, and the other items which may be similar to it or that will complement it. You may also find and get this information in some flea markets or in those out of the way antique shops especially if they have a willing and able seller.

It would be best for you to know all relevant information to the piece of furniture that you will buy. For the actual age of the item, as said above, it should usually cost more the older it is. In terms of rarity, the rarer an item is, the higher it will be in its value. It would be most rare of course, if there are only one or two more of the items existing. As for history, if someone famous has used in the past, then for sure, the higher would be its value.

Consider also that the best antiques are those that are preserved in good quality condition. If it is in the best condition like from the day that it was made, then this is of higher value as well. Some items though that may already be broken or non-functioning, could still be worth more because of the other factors that are mentioned above such as the fact that it has been used by someone famous in the past, or because it is only one in the whole world.

 

Starting Your Asian Antique Collection – The real deal

If you are thinking about starting your Asian antique collection, keep in mind that this is the one time that imitation is not the sincerest flattery form. The fact is that this category of business is a huge enterprise and you can now buy antiques online, at shows, shop and auctions. You might even find some one of a kind collectibles at flea markets and garage sales. Before buying, however, you need to know the different between fake stuff, reproductions and the real deal.

Asian Flask 300x200 Starting Your Asian Antique Collection   The real deal

Asian Flask

Before you start your collection, determine the budget you have to spend and what kind of pieces you prefer. Ask yourself whether you are shopping to collect for beautifying your home or primarily as an investment? Do you intend to go into the buy and sell business of antiques? Knowing what you are going to collect for will help you decide what pieces to buy.

According to the law, an item that is a minimum of one hundred years old is an antique. On the other hand, a collectible is a popular item that people collect, and does not necessarily have to be a hundred years old. In many cases, the collectible item’s age is not really that important except if it is labeled a collectible vintage item, which means that it needs to be a minimum of fifty years old.

Items that are created to look like antiques with the same patina and aged appearance are called reproductions. The values of these pieces are next to nothing when it comes to the world of antiques. For instance, modern furnishings can be made to look like eighteenth century styles including the Hepplewhite, Chippendale and the Queen Anne.

This is the same as jewelry that is made to look old but really is not considered antiques. Contrary to popular belief, the term ‘repro’ is not the shorter version of ‘reproductions’ but rather, is the word for something created intentionally to deceive customers into thinking they are purchasing a real antique. These are, in other words, fake items that can include copper, brass, wood carvings, textiles, prints, paintings, silver and even a repro Tiffany lamps.

Geisha 4 252x300 Starting Your Asian Antique Collection   The real deal

Geisha

Needless to say, it is quite important to do some research before actually going on a shopping spree. This means that you need to visit auctions, malls and antique shops in your area and abroad and talk to reputable dealers and collectors. Brush up your antique shopping skills by reading auction catalogues, price guides, magazines and book on the pieces that you are thinking of purchasing.

It cannot be denied that the more knowledgeable you are, the less the chances are of you paying more for something than you should. As you shop around, it won’t hurt to casually ask dealers about how long they’ve been in the business, how they determine an item’s price, if they belong to organizations that are professional and the like. Talk to them about the criteria they use for identifying the pieces they sell and if they are willing to sign a written agreement regarding a return policy if you are unsatisfied with the item later.

 

All about Collecting Unique Chinese Antiques

Collecting Chinese antiques that are unique is a good idea since due to the age of the items you find, these are limited and therefore high in value. Unique Chinese antiques are not only rare; they can also be useful, beautiful and have other unique features. The best part about these types of items for people in the antique business for investment purposes is that the value of these items inevitably double, triple or even quadruple with the passing of time. What better way to spend your hard earned money than by investing them in these types of items?

chinese coin All about Collecting Unique Chinese Antiques

Chinese coin

When collecting solely Unique Chinese antiques, you will want to find pieces that are considered not just unique but also beautiful. Next, outstanding craftsmanship is a must as well as to add one-of-a-kind treasures to your collection. This means that rather than antiques that have been massed produced such as postage stamps that are rare, it is better to find hand crafted pieces. Smaller sized antiques from China are easier to store as well and do not take as much space as antiques that are large.
Ideas for adding to your Chinese antique collection include Chinese jade carvings, pendants and snuff bottles. These are works of art that are unique and are not just made by hand but are created with hard to find material. There are snuff bottles that have been formed from rock lumps and are quite hollow with large crevices and small openings.
Pendants are another great collector’s item when it comes to collecting Chinese antiques. Many Chinese snuff bottle carvers also created pendants and the exquisitely intricate carvings some pendants have make these a must for every serious antique collector. For those who would like to create an even more specialized collection and would like to limit their antiques to those made with jade, pendants and snuff bottles made with jade are also available.

 

797051 gold dragon All about Collecting Unique Chinese Antiques

Gold dragon

Surprisingly, pendants and snuff boxes that are created with jade and are smaller are more expensive than larger jade items. This has to do mainly with the fact that the size of the stone requires more precision and more work, with the same high quality of larger pieces. In the past this was not the case but these days, the prices of tiny pieces sometimes you find may be more than larger pieces.
There are small jade Chinese antique carvings that are found in a variety of sculptures of animals, boulder carvings, screens, boxes and bowls. There are also lidded vases where a chain attaches the lid to the vase and can be composed of many links created out of one rock piece. Finds such as these are quite astounding especially for collectors that know how hard it is to work with jade.
There are some wonderful colored pieces created out of materials that have no flaw and others which used the natural marks and colors of the stone they are working with. The carving quality of jade in the eighteenth century was of quite a high level and some in the early part of the nineteenth century was quite fine.

 

 

Consider using Chinese Floral Prints to decorate your Home

china dreams2 199x300 Consider using Chinese Floral Prints to decorate your Home

Chinese Floral Prints Dreams

Now that you are planning to decorate one of the rooms in your house, you might want to consider using Chinese prints. The fact is that compared to other prints such as plant paintings, paintings of people or scenery, there is a distinctively quiet charm and grace that is exuded by . It adds the charm that Asian themes seem to be able to do so easily. A floral print consisting of orange blossoms, for instance, or lotus flowers floating in a pond just give you an extra dimension of design that Western prints are just unable to do.

Chinese Floral Patterns can be intimidating to work with especially when using it around the home. Done right, however, it can look absolutely gorgeous. When you are not sure about using patterns that are floral and in an Asian or Chinese theme, what you can do is begin by using it sporadically just to add accents. On the other hand if you really want to attract attention you can use a Chinese floral pattern which has a bold print. This will truly make a statement in any room of the house you use it for and home visitors will undoubtedly compliment you on your sense of style.

In most cases, prints of Chinese flowers tend to be light in color instead of bold. This makes it very relaxing and adds a touch of serenity to the overall theme of your home. Some prints carry some meaning with them. High virtues, for instance, are represented by orchids and lotus flowers. Women’s beauty is represented by blossoming peach flowers in the springtime. One of the highest values that the Chinese find important is virtue, which is represented by modesty. These symbolic meanings make a great conversational piece when conversing with guests who come and visit your home.

Jingtailan 193x300 Consider using Chinese Floral Prints to decorate your Home

Jingtailan

Before you begin using Chinese floral prints in your home, there are a few things to keep in mind. For one thing, when selecting a pattern with a floral print for decorating, you need to pick one colour from the floral pattern and use it to create the room’s colour scheme. You can use the flower pattern’s background to create wall colours. On the other hand for bolder prints you can actually choose a different path and utilize a colour accent in the colour of the walls of the room.

Finding a way to create a balance between the flower pattern as well as some items that are plain is a good idea. Balance can be achieved in the room you are decorating depending on your own taste. There are decorators who like having more of the prints than the plain colour items and others who like about the same amounts of prints and colourful items.  Remember that you can also find some Chinese antiques to accessorize, which gives a very professional, unified theme to your home.

Another technique when decorating with Chinese floral patterns is to mix it with another pattern. The key to doing this successfully is by finding another complementary print with the same colour combinations as the Chinese floral prints.

 

What kind of Chinese antique vases should I collect?

956210 vase with a dragon and 100 flowers images 1 What kind of Chinese antique vases should I collect?

Vase with a dragon and 100 flowers images

If you are wondering what kind of Chinese antique vases to collect, you need to know that antique Chinese vases have been collectibles for centuries. This is primarily due to the fact that these are elegant, rare and infinitely beautiful. Chinese Antique vases are indeed rare finds and it is this feature which makes them higher in value and is also the reason why collectors who go to auctions to buy them try and outbid each other incessantly for the sole purpose of acquiring one of these gorgeous antique vases from China. There are many antique Chinese vase varieties and many of these have not been catalogued.

This adds appeal and interest to people who love collecting since each vase they see that is up for sale can be a truly valuable find. Another reason why antique vases from China have always been popular is that they are quite intriguing, not just the way they look but the culture and history behind these artifacts as well. Of course it goes without saying that as you collect your finds, you need to do a bit of research in order to have a somewhat generalized knowledge of them so that you can have a clearer idea about what to add to your collection. This will give you a specialty you can base your decisions on and you will also know which vases are the real thing and which are not.

vase 296x300 What kind of Chinese antique vases should I collect?

Asian Vase

As you do research, you will soon find out that there are rare finds that are over two thousand years old that can be very difficult to acquire, let along find. On the other hand, finding and acquiring these kinds are a remarkable feat and one in which you will truly be able to be proud of yourself for. This is because finding these types of antique vases ensures that you will be able to make a profit while at the same time enjoying owning and caring for a truly beautiful piece. Many vases were found in tombs particularly in the dynasty called Tang. These usually were glazed in colors of green, silver, brown and orange. There have also been vases that are stoneware found by archaeologists with glaze finishes in high quality.

During the Ming Dynasty was when high quality porcelain was manufactured and prevailed. This was especially prevalent in an area towards Nankin’s southern region. As a matter of fact, the recognition and fame of China for porcelain of high quality is mainly due to the high quality and immense production from Nankin. These vases produced in Nankin can be distinguished due to the under glaze which is blue.

Other Ming Dynasty vases of high regard come with threads that have been raised with colored glaze besides the blue under glaze as well as over glazes of purple, green, yellow and red. Other kinds of Chinese antique vases that you might want to be aware of include plain white vases known popularly as colored ‘Chinese White.’ This is a style created by other factories besides Nankin in China for thousands of years. Collectors need to know features of authentication, the threads used as well as both the under glazing and over glazing features.

Chinese Antique Art for your home is a thing of beauty

vase 296x300 Chinese Antique Art for your home is a thing of beauty

Chinese Vase

When decorating a room or your entire house, it helps to know what works and what doesn’t. There are furniture and accessories that go really well together and you really need to see if things go together in a room before you make a final decision. These days, a home is where you go to refresh and relax yourself. This is where you attend to your life’s details and invite others to come and visit. In essence, a home is an extension of your lifestyle and your personality and a home that has been carefully decorated with antiques can be a true sight for sore eyes as well as a relaxing sanctuary.

It is a good idea to know about some of the furniture and accessories’ histories as you accumulate the pieces you are planning to use for decorating your home. Chinese Antique Art for your home is a thing of beauty when carefully arranged and protected from the elements. When furniture hunting, keep in mind that it was Chinese furniture crafts men who made long sofas that reclined and which transitioned into day beds and beds.

Chinese Door Knocker1 300x288 Chinese Antique Art for your home is a thing of beauty

Chinese Door Knocker

Artwork also flourished between six hundred and nine hundred AD when the Tang Dynasty ruled. There are unique period designs that mark this era including yoke-back tables and round-back tables. The Song Dynasty then caused chairs to be developed including stools, benches and waisted tables. Much furniture of modern days that were created after that used wood that incorporated other materials as well including silk, jade and ivory.

Before you buy the first five or ten things you see and later regret it, you first need to window shop. Visit different Asian antique shops and check catalogues. Remember, the choice you make is something you will need to live with for a very long time. Create a file of the styles you want. Don’t just accumulate pictures of interiors but also of shapes, graphics and patterns. Having an envelope full of swatches with snippets of fabric, chips of paint colors and other patterns and colors you love will help you create the haven you always longed for in a home. Make an assessment of the life you currently live.

chinese furniture 32 Chinese Antique Art for your home is a thing of beauty

Chinese furniture

Do you love having weekend barbecues? Do you love having lavish parties or weekday cocktail parties at home? This will determine what furniture you need. People who love to sit and have a pot of tea will undoubtedly need tables. On the other hand, people who love having guests overnight will need extra beds in the guest room as well as dresser drawers and other similar knick knacks. In other words, the furniture you decide to purchase need to match your actual lifestyle.

You may come to a point where you make an assessment to check what works and what doesn’t and it will always boil down to one thing. Beauty really is in the eye of the beholder and you can mix and match pieces according to what is beautiful to you. For instance, you can mix an antique chest in a country-theme room or an antique dresser drawer in a Victorian-style room. There are no hard and fast rules and the most important thing is that you are happy.

Silver Asian Antiques – Tips For Collectors

When it comes to silver, elaborated monograms including antique and vintage silver flatware are an art form that has been lost and are important historically. The vintage and antique silverware is historical and treasured by the owners originally. These are heirloom pieces that make not only unique gifts but are a great collectible item that you can use as a way of investing.

malay serving bowl1 300x224 Silver Asian Antiques   Tips For Collectors

Malay serving bowl

Unlike silver that is not real Asian Antiques is a specialty that has few fake items. When collecting silver, you don’t really need to concern yourself about whether or not these are real or fake as almost all of the pieces from this location and era are real. Although few books offer guidance, you will soon realize after purchasing a few pieces that there are specific monograms that tell you that the piece you are interested in is authentic.

For both new and experienced collectors, hearing the term ‘silver’ usually brings to mind a soup tureen from continental locations or a tea set from England. Some even think of a Paul Revere silver tankard. Collectors are generally less familiar to the silver tradition that is Chinese rather than European. Export silver that is Chinese was made for tourists from the west in the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

These tended to feature designs that included traditional Chinese dragons instead of the grapes and goats that were motifs from the West. With the trade from China, many visitors that came to this destination loved to shop. They would go to centers for trading including Shanghai, Hong Kong and Canton. Many returning ships took not just the tourists but also the silver.

All silver from China was hand-crafted with the designs which were usually elaborate hammered by hand by expert local craftsmen. Landscapes, birds, dragons and flowers are depicted in silver as well as the human figure. These were also the pattern that was searched for the most by collectors. Many people from Europe would spend months or weeks aboard ships traveling to China and would spend many months there.

This was long enough to select patterns that could be made especially according to their specifications as they enjoyed their holiday. Many silver Asian antiques you see today for sale are work that has been made to offer. Primarily, this was for foreigners and the designs which are elaborate were not really traditionally Chinese, nor preferred by the tastes of the local craftsmen at the time.

When buying silver, it is important to realize that the craftsmen from China did not really use the same silver standard that were utilized in the West so that the content of silver is not really something that should be considered by buyers. Even if each piece has a different purity level, this is not really something that will affect a work’s value. One thing that is great about export silver from China is that it uses hallmarks from England. These make the different makers quite distinguishable and easy to identify. Whoever suggested that English marks be used on the Chinese pieces is unknown but it has been a great help to many collectors and antique shows today.

How to Start Your Asian Jade Antique Collection

Jade Dragon 1024x781 How to Start Your Asian Jade Antique Collection

Jade Dragon

Buying Asian Antiques especially in the area of jade antiques is not only a great investment; it is a beautiful endeavor and will keep you out of the recession at the same time.

Now is a good time for starting your Asian Jade Antique Collection. When buying Asian Japanese and Chinese antiques, keep in mind that you need to purchase from state-run, well-known, large shops and confirm whether the antiques you are purchasing are authentic.

You will be able to tell that the antiques you are purchasing are authentic because these will usually have a seal made of wax which proves they are authentic. According to Asian Chinese laws, antiques before the year seventeen ninety-five are not allowed to be exported and ideally, you need to keep the receipt of your purchase to show to the customs officials at the airport when leaving China.

When starting your jade collection, keep in mind that these days, only 2 stones are thought to be real jade. This includes Old Jade, also known as Jade Nephrite which weighs six up to six-and-a-half on the Mohs scale. Jade antiques are a great addition to your collection as these increase in value and can help save you from the recession as a result.

Some beautiful jade antiques you might like to collect include jade amulets, carvings, jewelry such as earrings, bracelets, brooches and pendants and small statues. Many Buddha statues made of jade and combines sometimes with silver are also very popular among collectors.

A beginning collector may want to begin with smaller pieces and move on to more elaborate pieces later on. There are also lamp stands and antique telephone stands that are made of jade as well as vases. Keep in mind that as an investment, jade’s value increases and often set record-breaking prices.

Also known as ‘yu’ in Chinese Mandarin, jade is more precious than diamonds or gold. In Asian folklore, the value of jade is more than the fact that it appreciates in value. Jade is considered a spiritual substance and the ‘stone of heaven’ in ancient literature of the Chines.

Fisherman2 1024x731 How to Start Your Asian Jade Antique Collection

Jade Fisherman

In other words, gold is seen as something of high value, whereas ‘yu’ is seen as priceless. A smooth hard stone, jade has a surface of luster of a smooth, hard stone that contains variations of color. Highly collectable today, Chinese jade necessitates being investigated before you buy.

 

In China, jade is viewed by the Chinese very differently compared to other semi-precious stones. They see jade has holding a high honorable place. As a matter of fact, when you tried to get help from your ancestry in Ancient China, you went to a place where the names of your ancestry were done in inscription form in tablets of jade.

They believed that this semi-precious stone was the mystical bridge between heaven and their prayers. Jade is attributed with many powers and is believed to be used as an amulet to ward off evil and to bring good luck. Others also believe that jade has powers of healing.