I must admit that I’m not normally a fan of antique reproductions.
I’ll try to explain.
I’ve been antiquing for over three decades, and I’ve learned to love the patina of truly aged things.
I’ve rarely seen a reproduction that could fool me into thinking it was authentically old.
As I was writing this post, I thought of why that might be, and the best I can explain right now is: In my opinion, it’s just very difficult, to truly recreate the timeworn patina of an antique.
Reproduction antiques normally look ‘too perfect’ or the paint work is not quite right.
Appearances aside, I like knowing that when I buy an antique, I’m buying something that’s genuinely old — for what it is and how it looks, imperfections included. I agree with one homeowner, recently featured in Cottages and Bungalows magazine – (I can’t find the quote at the moment so I’ll paraphrase her) – “Old things have soul.”
They totally do.
My aunt who’s been antiquing for at least 5 decades told me a long time ago: generally speaking, antiques retain their value and can even increase in value over time.
Granted, this is a generality and not true in every single instance. You can certainly overpay for an antique and some antiques can certainly go down in value.
But I will say this: like a brand new car driven off the lot, new pieces often lose their value in a hurry.
What Changed My Mind?
Now, I still believe in my reasoning, but . . .
What made me have a change of heart, at least to some small degree, was Daryl McMahon’s work. He is an exceptional, multi-faceted artist, skilled at woodworking, painting, textiles . . . you name it. His creations are absolutely stunning.
I believe you will agree with me, too, once you see a small sample of his art.
1. a gorgeous heavily distressed fireplace mantel 2. French file boxes 3. one of his oxidized zinc industrial lighting fixtures 4. a gameboard 5. apothecary bottles 6. a nine-drawer spice cupboard 7. a little wall cupboard
So I admit now that my reasoning may need to be tweaked a bit to exclude fine art which I personally believe can look authentic, be unique and very possibly, retain value.
My only caveat? As long as the seller discloses it’s a reproduction, not an antique, then you can make your own decision.
(Mr. McMahon does this by the way.)
So what do you think?