Tag Archives: Antique Advertising

Man vs. Machine: The Timeless Art of Hand Painted Trade Signs

The Janie and Peter Gross Collection being offered on November 19 is “the finest and most interesting assemblage of signs that Skinner has offered in many years,” in the words of Stephen Fletcher, Skinner Executive Vice President and Director of American Furniture.

Advertising is an inescapable fact of modern life. But very few of the endless commercials, jingles, promotional handouts and newspaper inserts that bombard us today bear any comparison to 19th century trade signs for inventiveness, excellence of design, and elegance of lettering.… Read More

Antique Trade Signs

There are few objects that get attention at a Skinner Americana auction the way that antique and vintage trade signs do, and they’re one of my favorite categories we sell. These signs, often painted on wood or tin, were generally used to advertise businesses, identify work that went on in a particular building, or demonstrate what was for sale at a given establishment. Many signs are carefully crafted by hand, lettered in gilt or colorful paint on contrasting backgrounds, sometimes incorporating pictorial elements or elaborate decorative flourishes.… Read More