Many of us who collect antiques, even just for everyday usage, have our favorite resources for learning about them and the era that saw their production. With the advent of the internet there are vast resources online. Search engines provide an easy way to track down general types of antiques and learn about their origin. Image searches can help identify similar pieces. Collectors clubs and associations generally have their own sites. Auction houses have an online presence. Museums frequently have their collections indexed online and provide valuable and accurate information.

In addition to online resources, we like books, magazines, newsletters and the printed catalogs from museums and historic societies. We like to keep a few books handy, not only for rapid consulting but also for relaxing reading. Here are a few general books we currently most frequently use:

  • The Encyclopedia of Furniture by Joseph Aronson (Clarkson Potter Publishers, 3rd Edition, 1965). The first edition of Aronson’s classic came out in 1938. This about 480 page classic can keep you reading for quite a while!
  • The Pictorial Guide to Pottery & Porcelain Marks by Chad Lage (Schroeder Publishing, 2004)
  • Miller’s Antiques Handbook & Price Guide, 2014-2015 by Judith Miller (Octopus Publishing Group, 2013)
  • Warman’s Antiques & Collectables, 2014 by Noah Fleisher (F + W Media, 2013)
  • Kovels’ Antiques & Collectables Price Guide, 2014 by Terry and Kim Kovel (Black Dog and Leventhal Publishers, 2013)
  • Antiques Investigator by Judith Miller (DK Publishing, 2007). We frequently consult Miller’s work. It’s fun and has great photos. It’s designed for people who want to learn more about determining the real from the repro or outright fake, to detect “marriages” & “divorces” and to identify other key aspects of a piece.
  • Miller’s Antique Marks by Judith Miller (Octopus Publishing, 2013). This little pocket sized book contains over 6000 marks in an easy to use format. It’s great for taking along to a sale.

These are just a few of the great books that are available. Collectors of specific types of antiques, or those from a certain country or region, have many other books and resources tailored for their interest. All are designed to help us enjoy the world of “old things” and “old stories”. For us at Dusty, it’s all about learning and sharing and enjoying.

What are your favorite resources for learning about antiques?