These markets for Antiques and Collectibles have been difficult and there are some that try to take advantage of this situation. Rather than deal fairly in these difficult times, they regress to dealing in fakes and reproductions to pad their pockets. I believe in the current markets I am seeing more fakes than at any other time in my career of dealing in antiques and collectibles. It is difficult for me to buy anything today that I can't see, touch and test because of this situation. You should be extremely careful buying on eBay because this is where much of this merchandise is being sold.
I would like to share just one example of what I am taking about. Yesterday I received a call about some Carnival Glass and the person inquiring wanted to know the value of a couple of pieces. First they asked about a piece that had a horse head in the middle of it. After finding no pattern like that on the site that I will be using from now on for Carnival www.ddoty.com, I didn't give up. Opening my book Standard Encyclopedia of Carnival Glass there was a pattern as described, a pony pattern by Dugan.
The first thing that popped out at me going to this site was that pony had been reproduced in both bowls and plates. If you are asking how much difference this makes in price, even for the authentic ones, I will tell you. The piece I was researching was a Marigold Plate and in 2002 one sold for $2400. One year later the price received for another one reached $950. But what has happened since is that because of the reproductions, today one can be purchased for $100 or less. These pieces are made from the same molds as the earlier pieces so it might be impossible to tell the difference. You shouldn't purchase a single piece of Carnival Glass without checking David Doty's Carnival Glass site. This pattern isn't the only one being reproduced so be on guard.
On this site you will find all the information required to protect you from getting deceived by dishonest dealers. Can you imagine if this information wasn't available and you saw a Pony Marigold plate offered for $600 and you knew that one had sold for $2400? Yes, even I would have purchased it. That would have meant I had just thrown $600 down the drain. This goes back to that old saying “If it seems too good to be true, it probable is”, but not always and that is where we find the real treasures if we take our time. Most of this fake and reproduction garbage is being peddled by dealers but they don't know everything either and they themselves may have been fooled. However, there are many people that push this garbage on others knowingly so it is better to be safe than sorry. Take your time in buying and if there isn't the information available to you at the time then pass on it, because there will be other opportunities to spend your money when you are sure.