Antique silver is a tremendous and valuable collecting focus. The variety found in silver collecting makes it easy to want to get started. The following are a few antique dealer tips on how to get started collecting silver.
Pick a Focus for Your Collection
With numerous options available, it’s easy to want to collect everything. It’s helpful for collectors, especially those who are beginners, to decide which direction to take their collection. If you’re in search of a focus, a few ideas include:
- Pick a specific object, such as sterling silver spoons.
- Choose a favorite era to collect from, like Art Deco pieces.
- Focus on a favorite motif, such as lilies or geometric designs.
- Pick a specific manufacturer, like Unger Brothers or Wallace, or choose another famous name.
- Focus on pieces you’ll use daily, such as serving platters.
Learn To Determine Age
When purchasing items to add to your collection, it’s crucial to get a sense of the piece’s age. If your item has a hallmark, compare it to other known marks from that manufacturer to narrow down a date. Hallmarked items make this simple because many silver manufacturers will change their mark every few years.
If you find a piece with no hallmark, you’re going to have to look at design clues. Gather knowledge on your favorite era to gain a better understanding of what styles and motifs were popular. If you’re still in doubt, take the piece to get appraised by a professional.
Become Familiar With Silver Content and Plating
Before making a single purchase, you must familiarize yourself with the various types of silver. Solid silver is far too soft to hold up, so it’s doubtful you’ll find any. You’re more likely to encounter silverplate or sterling silver.
It’s easy to see why many collectors choose to collect silver. You have so many options ranging from silver serving dishes to sterling silver wall hooks. Use these tips to start collecting silver today.