Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Nippon – Daryle Lambert's Antique and Collectibles Blog - Cheap or Expensive?

Joan F. Van Patten - Thanks to Amazon

When it comes to one of the most sought after collectibles, Nippon, can you tell from looking at a piece whether it is rare and expensive or a cheap export? Most people can't and that is why Joan F. Van Patten has written at least three books on the subject. Whenever you find that a person has taken the time required to write several books on one subject, it is usually a good indicator that there are a lot of people interested in that subject. Mrs. Van Patten's series is called The Collector's Encyclopedia of Nippon Porcelain and you can find it on Amazon. Again, I would suggest you buy used copies of her book because they should be very cheap.

Did you know that Nippon is the name the Japanese call their homeland and it isn't the name of a manufacturing company? In fact, many companies use the Nippon mark on their wares and the marks can vary. The cheap items bearing a Nippon mark were usually produced for export while the wonderful pieces that are sought after by the collector were meant to stay in the country. If you are fortunate enough to find a signed piece, it is even that much better.

When you first come into contact with Nippon, you will soon see the differences between the common and rare. The better pieces of Nippon often are delicate and lavished with gold overlay while others are embellished with very fine beading. All Nippon is old and most pieces are hand painted, which is often stated on the bottom of the piece.

There are collectors that just collect certain items of Nippon. Perhaps the most collected items are the humidors. But don't get confused as there are many other pieces of Nippon collected, such as vases, chocolate pots and cups, plates, urns, bowls, tankards, dolls and whiskey jugs to list a few. Once you are able to tell the better pieces, you will see that their values will range from a couple of hundred dollars to $5000 or more. I have to admit, I enjoy just browsing through the series of three books because of the beauty of the pieces.

You can often find a real winner with Nippon because most people think that it is all cheap but that definitely isn't true. Keep your eye out for the delicate blown out pieces and the ones with signatures if you want your bank account to take a hefty leap.

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