Start Your Collection!

A couple of years ago, I was just at the point of exploding. I had been taking care of everyone but me, and one Saturday afternoon when I couldn’t take it anymore, I laid the kids down for naps and woke my husband up from his, and told him I would be back in a couple of hours and asked him to keep the laundry going if you wanted clothes to wear to work on Monday. I jumped in the car and off I went.

I got about two blocks before I pulled over and turned off the car. I looked at myself in the rearview mirror and said, “Where are you going?” I had no idea what I wanted to do. I hadn’t done anything just for pleasure in so long, I couldn’t remember what I really enjoyed. As I sat there thinking, I remembered all the time my mother spent cleaning and rearranging her antique dishes collection. She loved those dishes, and whenever she needed her space you would find her with them or out scouring for more.

I started my car and headed for the nearest flea market. As I was driving, I thought about different things that I might like to collect. Now, just a couple of years later, I have quite a few collections of my own, including antique dishes, and I have my own peace and happiness from something I created just for me.

Choosing What You Want To Collect

To begin your collection, thing about some of the things that interest you. Decide if you want to collect items just for the enjoyment of collecting or if you would be more interested in collecting items that may become valuable investments.

For example, if you are doing it strictly for your enjoyment, you may think about a specific animal you like. I have a very large cow collection taking over my kitchen. My sister redecorated a room in her house in the trendy fruit motifs, and she now has quite a collection of fruit d�©cor items.

Other ideas are teapots, hats, movie memorabilia, buttons, pens, angels, fairies, t-shirts, or candles. Anything that captures your fancy can get you started. My husband has a matchbook collection that he takes great enjoyment from. He just gets a kick out of unusual matchbooks from different locations.

If you would prefer something that will increase in value, you may be more inclined to collect items such as antique dishes, comic books, Disney memorabilia, stamps, coins, or any of the collectible lines that are available today, for example, Boyd’s Bears, Precious Moments, SnowBabies or Dea Capodimonte of Naples, Italy.

Chasing Down Great Deals

Once you have decided what to collect, the joy of the hunt begins. My favorite places to go for my treasures are always the places where I can find the ultimate deals. Yard sales, flea markets, consignment shops and thrift stores are always my first stops. It is amazing what wonderful things you can find for next to nothing.

In recent years, collectors have had the joy of a whole new market opening up to them via the Internet. With the Internet, you have access to the entire world rather than just your local area. Online auctions are an incredible resource for finding items to add to your collection – and getting some great deals.

Researching Your Collectibles

There are quite a few good collectibles shows on television, such as “Flea Market Finds” on HGTV, “The Incurable Collector” on A&E, and of course, “The Antiques Roadshow”. If your hobby becomes a passion, you will want to invest in a good price guide. There are specialized guides for specific items and general guides that cover a wide range of objects. It is important to look for a guide that gives you product background, company information and a history of the item. I always look for the price guides that provide detailed pictures and information about markings, number produced and year of production. Also, make sure to buy the most current guide available. Browse some guides at your local library first, to get a feel for what you’re looking for before you choose which one to buy.

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