This Antique Appraisal Online guide might help you to learn how to appraise vintage china or antique porcelain items, before you purchase. It is very important to help you decide how much money you will offer for it, and, later on, if it warrants the expense of an expert’s appraisal. The first part of your appraisal depends on identifying exactly what you have in your possession, where it came from and how old it is likely to be. Take a look at these key points to show you where to look and what you are looking for!
- Check underneath because most pottery makers’ marks on antique Pottery Art and Studio Pottery Vases were made by the designing artist signing or adding her initials.
- Check antique ceramics/tiles and figurines for an additional makers’ mark back-stamp that can identify which studio or factory they came from.
- Check any marks you find on the internet and discover information which will help you appraise the article.
- Antique pottery articles are often unique, so an undamaged piece of pottery can be worth a lot of money if the provenance can be verified.
Antique Chinaware and Porcelain
- Check underneath for a makers’ mark impressed, incised or ink-stamped on the base of the item.
- Look for the initials or logo of the artist on hand-decorated figurines that show a piece is over 100 years old.
- Look out for porcelain and chinaware with the country of origin mark either next to, or near, or within the makers’ mark or back-stamp, because this proves they were made after 1891.
- Porcelain articles without this type of mark were made before 1891- making them antique!
- Be wary of recent imports into Europe and the U.S. coming from impoverished areas in Asia.
- Manufacturers have to place a label or sticker on each item and these stickers can be purposely removed or merely drop off after they arrive at their destination.
- Some of these porcelain or chinaware items show a type of stamped makers’ marks that looks very similar to antique porcelain marks, so although they are of recent manufacture they can easily seem like genuine antiques.
- It is easy to identify the approximate age of a piece of Nippon or Japanese porcelain.
- Until 1921 their porcelain was marked with the country of origin ‘Nippon’.
- In that year, the U.S. requested they change the country of origin mark from Nippon to Japan and to cease marking porcelain with the Nippon mark.
- Therefore, if you have a piece of porcelain or chinaware that is marked Nippon, you have definite proof that it was made before 1921 and could be a real antique!
Antiques appraisal is a fascinating hobby and my advice is always to try to find a course that will teach you the essential antiques hunting secrets you need to know. Only by informing yourself will you be able to do an accurate initial appraisal – before you spend your money!