July 25, 2021

Antiques & Collecting: Life lesson: You don’t always get what you want at an auction

Part of the fun of collecting and going to shows and auctions is how often you see something that is a mystery. It’s a learning experience.

We took our children to shows as soon as they knew how to behave: Don’t touch, hands behind your back, ask if you want to see something.

We checked with the dealer before taking them into a booth and explained they knew how to behave and if there should be an accident, of course we would pay for any damage.

Each child had a collection — small heart charms or tin spice boxes. We showed them the jewelry and named the colors of the stones, then the name of the stones, and by kindergarten, they were experts.

They helped us buy things for the country store by asking the dealer the price of a sign or a box that they liked. Big, colorful signs with old-fashioned pictures were the favorites.

This tin paint sign is 27-inches tall and is unusual because it has a row of wooden color sample blocks at the bottom. The old car and the “quaint” porch picture also had appeal.

But although we agreed it would look great at our house, several bidders liked it, so when it sold at $3,186, we were not the buyers. Our children learned that you don’t always get what you want at an auction; sometimes the bidding goes past our limit because someone else wants it more.

What is the resale price for a Fiesta 60th Anniversary pitcher with four matching cups in new condition?

Fiesta has been made by the Homer Laughlin China Co. since 1936 and has been made in many colors since then. To mark the 60th anniversary in 1996, Fiesta was made with the words “Still Proudly Made by The Homer Laughlin China Co., Genuine Fiesta, 60th Anniversary, 1936-1996” and the logo of a dancing lady.

The anniversary line includes a pitcher, mugs (cups), tumblers, a cake plate, a clock face plate and other items. The price depends on color and condition. Pitchers sell online for $25 to $48, mugs for $3 to $10. A set with four mugs could sell for $37 to $88. Higher prices are asked but don’t sell.

Current Prices

Kitchen, kettle, copper, arched swing handle, goose neck spout, crimped seams, domed lid, J. Getz, Lancaster, Pa., c. 1830, 11 inches, $148.

Redware, bean pot, sgrafitto flowers, ribbed strap handle, Pennsylvania, 1800s, 5 x 8 inches, $384.

Toy, phonograph with horn, fairy tale graphics, key wind, spring motor, Keimola, Germany, 1920s, 7 x 3 inches, $575.

Silver bowl, Art Deco, hammered, footed, Reed & Barton, 1929, 5 7/8 x 9 1/2 inches, $855.

Tip: Keep a collection of photographs in an interior room of the house. Avoid the basement, garage and attic.

Terry and Kim Kovel

For more collecting news, tips and resources, visit www.Kovels.com. © 2021 King Features Synd., Inc.