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Auctioneers and Appraisers

Tag Archives: Auction FAQ

How to Buy a Violin: A Guide to Musical Instrument Auctions

Auction is an excellent avenue to consider when searching for a great value in your next instrument or bow. Fine musical instrument auctions are where the dealers buy. They are, essentially, the wholesale market for the trade. But, these auctions are free and open to the general public.

5 Reasons to Try Absentee Bidding Online

Some people call them absentee bids, and others say proxy bids or left bids. Whatever the name, this type of bidding has long been an important part of live auctions. For a variety of reasons, it is not always possible or practical to attend a Skinner auction in person. Perhaps you live 3,000 miles away, so flying to Boston might not be possible; or you have tickets to a Red Sox & Yankees ball game and can’t make it to the sale; or maybe you’re just plain old busy with family responsibilities. Life happens!

My Top 5 Antique Truths: Debunking the Myths of Antiques Reality TV

I’ve been an appraiser for over 30 years. I’ve also been behind the scenes and in front of the camera on Antiques Roadshow, the original and, in my opinion, best antiques reality TV show. Over time, I’ve noticed that many shows perpetuate certain myths about the antiques world. To get the most out of your viewing experience, keep the following truths in mind when tuning in…Truth #1: Antiques Appraisals Happen Every Day

Auction TV Shows: Reality or Just TV?

In the world of art, antiques, and auctions, the reality show that started it all was of course, Antiques Roadshow. But in recent years, a slew of reality TV shows have shed light on the business of art, antiques, and auctions. A few worth checking out include Pawn Stars, Storage Wars, American Pickers, Auction Kings, History Detectives, Cracking Antiques, and the genre’s latest entry, It’s Worth What? This last one is NBC’s new primetime game show where contestants compete, guessing the value of rare, quirky and beautiful art, antiques and collectibles. It features Skinner’s own Stuart Whitehurst as the show’s resident appraiser.

Consigning to Auction, Part IV: Auction Fees

Auction Fees

This blog post completes my series on Consigning at Auction. We’ll cover auction fees, as this is often an area where many people have questions. Auction buyer fees and seller fees are the industry standard. The fees pay for the work the auction house puts in to make sure your property reaches the best possible buying audience.

Consigning to Auction, Part III: The Auction Schedule

Antiques Auction Schedule

When should you contact an auction house to arrange to sell your property? You don’t have to wait until an upcoming auction is announced. Auction schedules for most major houses are planned six months to nearly a year in advance, so scheduling your property to sell in an upcoming auction is rarely a problem.

New to collecting antiques? Monthly Auctions in Massachusetts are a Shopper’s Delight

There are great ways to get started learning about and participating in the auction world. Monthly estate auctions are one of the best ways to do this. At Skinner, we’ve been holding monthly “Discovery Auctions” of affordable antiques, decorative arts and collectibles since the 1980s.

Three Expert Insights: Quality Details

"Robert" Belgian State Mantel Clock, Estimated at $20,000-25,000

Quality in antiques and collectibles can stem from fine workmanship or exquisite materials. Skinner experts and appraisers have weighed in on these aspects of quality in the two previous posts. However, there is yet one more major theme when it comes to quality: detail.

As Executive Vice President Stephen Fletcher puts it, “It’s like buying a car.” You could be looking at two identical models, and one has a walnut interior, gps, and a sunroof, while the other has nothing special.… Read More

5 Expert Insights: Quality Materials

No one will argue that quality matters in buying and selling antiques and art objects. The trouble is, the characteristics that make one piece quality and another piece mediocre are often subtle. Skinner experts and appraisers offer their insights, stemming from years of experience, into what kinds of materials mean quality. Let’s take a look at how to recognize quality in jade, wine, Native American art, furniture, and metal sculpture.

5 Expert Insights: Quality Workmanship

Quality. This one word can make the difference between a value in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars when it comes to art and antiques. Advice like “buy high-quality” or “quality never loses value” floats around the antiques business, but what does quality really mean?

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