Fall Trends in Antiquing

Trends in Antiquing

Antiques may be timeless, but trends still come and go. We spoke to some of Canada’s top dealers to find out what’s hot - and what to hold on to - this season. Keep an eye out for these treasures at your next antique show or fair!

This year, home décor seems to be on everyone’s mind. Antique hunters are searching for vintage pieces that complement, or add a unique and stunning interest to, their homes.

Bonnie Wilson, Owner of Gild & Co. in Vancouver, points to bleached or striped European oak pieces, true French antiques, shutters and shutter doors, vintage opera glasses, silver-plated trays, Canadian antiques and anything "footed" as items that are being inquired about recently.

"Vintage Persian carpets are very hot and get lots of attention whenever I get one in the store. Footstools and fireside benches always fly out of the store, and gilt frame and ornate mirrors are always hot (and hard to find!)"

"Scraped back, painted furniture is also a great trend that shows the age and layers of refinishing of a piece," says Wilson.

Richard Anderson, from BLUE JAR Antique Mall in Edmonton, concurs. "People are interested in repurposing furniture themselves right now. They are very imaginative, looking to strip, chalk paint, and distress. We often paint pieces ourselves in the shop to attract visitors."

Anderson notes that the trend seems to be more about decorating homes than collecting right now. This likely has a lot to do with the wild popularity of DIY and home renovation websites and blogs like Pinterest, Houzz, and Apartment Therapy.

He mentions that tin ceiling tiles, barn board, and rusty old metal pieces are very popular right now, all common subjects on these sites and in magazines, where people are looking to reuse, upcycle, and make pieces their own.

The story differs a little in Montreal, where Francis Lord, from Milord Antiques, says Italian pieces are in demand. From vases and chairs from the 1950s, to chandeliers and light fixtures from the 60s, all the way back to 18th century Venetian mirrors, Italian antiques are hot.

(It looks like Items from the 40s, 50s, 60s, and 70s are becoming more and more popular too, as generations grow up and begin building their own collections based on what they’ve seen in magazines or TV shows like Pickers).

Other popular items Lord feels reflect the current trends of antiques and vintage buying include Louis XVI style pieces from France, particularly commodes and writing desks, and items from the 1970s, like coffee tables and ceramic sculptures. If you have items like these, now may be the time to think about selling them.

Heading East to Halifax, folk and native arts are really drawing attention at Finer Things Antiques, particularly from Inuit artists. Though maritime and nautical antiques have always been prevalent in this region, of late vintage clocks, sextants, and ship bells have been more in demand.

What’s next in antique and vintage collecting? We’re guessing organic and natural - stone and marble, and rough, rather than polished pieces. Due to the Internet, a regional focus on collecting is become much less noticeable, as people the world over buy and sell items from across the globe. And older, more traditional antique categories could make a comeback, as collectors return to their ancestral roots.

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