One of the most frustrating aspects of collecting, and one that discourages many people from getting into the hobby, is reproductions. Thatâs quite understandable since no one likes to get duped and play the fool, especially where hard-earned money is involved.
So what can you do as a savvy collector or dealer of antiques and collectibles? Invest in a copy of the Antique Trader Guide to Fakes & Reproductions by Mark Chervenka (Krause Publications).
Topics Covered in the Book
While itâs going to be difficult for any book on reproductions to be comprehensive, this one does a very good job of documenting known fakes. The extensive information on glass, ranging from Tiffany
to Depression-era glass
, and ceramic objects is worth the $24.99 retail price alone. But the book goes way beyond those breakables.
With topics like black memorabilia, Bakelite, and lawn and garden cast iron, it contains information of interest to most any dealer of general antiques and a good number of targeted collecting areas.
Not only do you learn about fakes from this book, you learn about the genuine pieces as well. With 1,036 photos, including helpful side by side comparisons of old with new, and 367 pages of related information, this may very well end up being one of your favorite books related to collecting.
How to Use This Book
This is certainly one book that would be convenient to have in your collecting book bag. You know, those reference guides you keep in your car when you're out antiquing and combing garage sales
for treasures. It's also handy to have on your desk when you're perusing online auction photos
. Or, you can photograph the pages pertaining to what you're interested in collecting and store them on your smartphone for your own personal reference out in the field.
You can also look up questionable items after you've already purchased them, although that's not ideal since your money's already spent at that point. If it's only a few bucks and you like the item one way or the other, then it might not matter much whether you got stuck with a reproduction. But by and large, especially for folks interested in a variety of antiques topics, this is a good reference to study repeatedly until the information becomes second nature. And truthfully, any antiques generalist will find being armed with this type valuable knowledge well worth the effort if not quite enjoyable.
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy