January 18, 2022

Antiques & Collecting: Paris porcelain

Paris porcelain is often a mystery to collectors. Sometimes it is sold as Vieux Paris or Old Paris. It was made in the 18th or early 19th century.

Most pieces are not marked, but the porcelain is very white and the decorations are usually elaborate with many colors and gold trim. It was made by several different Paris potteries.

A 19th-century cylindrical Paris porcelain vase decorated on the front with a painting of Cupid and Psyche sold for $244 at a Neal auction recently. There was standing putto on the back, and the vase had a blue base with gold shaped trim. Other pieces of Paris porcelain at the same auction were appraised at $600 or more.

We found one of our old family cemeteries in Casey County, Kentucky, and we want to clean several head or foot stones. We want to be able to read the stones and identify our folks to help put our family tree together. Any suggestions on a safe product or procedure?

Make sure the stones belong to members of your family before trying to clean them. The first rule in cleaning an old cemetery stone is “do no harm.”

Don’t try to clean a stone if it’s unstable, broken or cracked. Don’t use a wire brush or bleach. Use a dry nylon brush to carefully brush away some of the dirt.

If more is needed, you can use water to clean the stone, but you may have to bring it with you. A spray bottle filled with water is a convenient way to rinse the stone after you’ve cleaned it. Don’t try to clean the stone if the weather is too hot or too cold.

Using cold water on a hot stone can cause cracks to form. If the weather is too cold, water can get into cracks in the stone and cause more damage.

There are special products that will clean stains from mold or algae. Check the website www.CemeteryConservators UnitedStandards.org for more information.

Current Prices

Movie poster, “Caddyshack,” paper, pictures Chevy Chase, Michael O’Keefe, Rodney Dangerfield and Ted Knight, autographed by Chase, O’Keefe, Dangerfield and Bill Murray, 1980, 16 x 11 inches, $70.

Furniture, shaving mirror, mahogany, arched, rope twist supports, serpentine marble base, rounded feet, Victorian, 31 1/2 x 28 1/2 inches, $125.

Bank, bank building, Flat Iron Bank, cast iron, triangular form & base, Kenton Hardware, c.1920, 5 3/4 inches, $270.

Iron, gate, wrought iron, hammered, arched, leaf top, stylized floral openwork, 70 x 58 inches, $630.

Tip: Hard plastic dolls will mildew if kept in a damp environment.

Terry and Kim Kovel

For more collecting news, tips and resources, visit www.Kovels.com. © 2022 King Features Synd., Inc.