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a new collection

January 12, 2011

I am fascinated by what people choose to collect and why. I haven’t collected much myself due to a fear of clutter in our Brooklyn apartment–that, and I didn’t feel swept up enough in any one type of object to search for it the world over.

But on a recent visit to New Orleans I saw a striking mint-green vase at a Magazine Street antiques shop. Handthrown with a matte glaze, it had the bold crisp lines of the Art Deco period, and I stood in front of the case gazing at it as if I were in the Tiffany room at the Met. I finally asked the clerk about its price: $250. Not outrageous, but certainly beyond my means.

I continued to pine for it when I returned to New York, until finally I turned to Ebay. Wow! So many fabulous antique green vases! I eyed several, but decided on this modest piece made by the Muncie Pottery Company, which was in business from only 1919 to 1939 in Muncie, Indiana. Though it stands at just 6 inches tall, I fell immediately for the matte finish, the springy green, and the crisp yet organic shape. When it arrived, wrapped in cotton, its substantial weight was both surprising and reassuring. I knew I’d chosen correctly.

It isn’t worth very much, but it’s a noble start to my new collection of vases from the 1920s and 30s. If you’ve recently started a collection or simply like to read about others, is a remarkable resource. It’s got lots of smart information about all types of collectibles, and it’s also well designed and frequently updated. If you’re not inspired now, you will be.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 12, 2011 7:35 pm

    An excellent start to a vase collection. I’m looking forward to seeing what new pieces you’ll acquire.

  2. karen permalink
    January 12, 2011 3:14 pm

    Actually, it is beautiful. You have chosen well.

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