Though the exotic fragrances within them may have long since evaporated into thin air, the perfume bottles of yesteryear are even more treasured today than they were for their contents in centuries past. Antique perfume bottles have become the object of many collectors, and exquisite examples of these small treasures are found in antique shops around the world.
But because the prices demanded for antique perfume bottles can range from a few, to a few thousand, dollars, the beginning collector should what to look for in a prospective antique perfume bottle purchase to make sure of getting the genuine article.
Before You Get Started
The first rule to building a collection of antique perfume bottles you can enjoy for years is to only collect bottles you really like. Even though an antique perfume bottle may be inexpensive, it’s not going to do a thing for your collection if it’s ugly.
Price and age do not by themselves an eye-catching collection make; so if you have to choose between buying an inexpensive ordinary antique perfume bottle right now or waiting a little longer to buy a more expensive one that absolutely bowls you over, wait a little longer. But never spend money you need for other expenses on an antique perfume bottle just because you think it might be a steal.
Where To Look
Don’t limit your search for antique perfume bottles to antique shops. They can be found at estate and even yard sales, flea markets, thrift stores, and Internet auction sites. If you know what to look for, and the seller doesn’t, you can find some real bargains on antique perfume bottles at yard sales and thrift stores. Buying from Internet auctions can be competitive, because the other bidders will know just as much about the bottle as you do.
What To Look For
Many antique perfume bottles lack the trademark by which collectors are able to identify and value other china, glass, and pottery. So you will have to learn to judge them mot by their makers, but by their unique characteristics. Bottles from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were often of cut glass; those of the Art Deco period of the 1920s were often of hand-painted ceramic in unique designs, or of gold offset with jewels.
You can learn more about antique perfume bottles, including how to care for them, by performing an Internet search, and looking at examples of some of the miniature masterpieces currently offered for sale.
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