I will be attending the Sohn's auction in Evansville, Indiana all of next week so I thought it might be best to write a series while I'm away. I chose toys because of all the fun I had writing about the Walking Man tin windup toy.
It is very difficult to write on just one type of toy when there are so many to chose from. You can spend all of your time just hunting for treasures in these categories: Vehicles, Animal Drawn, Mechanical Banks, Tin Windups, Battery Operated, Soldiers and Premiums. Then, if that isn't enough, you have all the different companies:
If I were to chose only one type of collectible to buy and sell, it would be toys. You might be asking why toys over pottery, paintings or even art glass and here’s why. First, they will never go out of favor so there will always be a market for them. Second, they weren't made to collect but to play with so their numbers continue to be depleted. Third, every generation has its own favorites so the prices will continue to escalate. Here is my favorite reason for collecting toys; they are simply fun.
It really doesn't matter whether what you buy is a $50 or $5000 toy because, if you are like me, you have to keep it around for a little while just to play with. Have you ever watched the Antique Road Show when the expert is giving an appraisal on a toy? First he looks at it and tells the owner how wonderful the toy is and then he operates it back and forth, savoring every second. It's like he doesn't want to let it go and that is how I feel whenever I come across that special toy.
Remember you aren't buying toys to keep, even if you may set aside one or two on occasion, Your intent is to make money and where you look for those treasures is of most importance. I have found the best places for great toys are garage sales, house sales and secondhand stores. On occasion, I have found a special toy at a flea market or a white elephant sale. At most auctions I attend, the toys collectors are in attendance too and it is very difficult to compete with them.
Over the next few days I will be covering individual companies and the different classifications of toys. I will also be listing study material that will help in your search for those special toys.
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