Antique porcelain pieces can often be quite valuable, but a large part of this value comes from their condition. Pieces that aren’t in great condition won’t be worth as much, and in some cases, may actually have very little value.
Here are four things that can diminish the overall value of your porcelain.
When asking “what is my antique worth?” you need to start by looking for chips in the piece. If the base or rim has small chips in them, it won’t be worth as much. Often, it can be hard to see small chips on the rim, so always run a finger around the area. If you feel any sharp edges, the piece is chipped.
Another issue vintage porcelain has is cracks. Usually, you can see the cracks when you closely examine a piece, but you should also look over the item with a magnifying glass if you suspect there are tiny cracks. If the piece is very colorful or has a pattern to it, it can be difficult to see the cracks.
Crazing is the term for small, fine cracks in the piece’s surface or glaze. It often occurs when the porcelain pieces haven’t been stored correctly. If you keep porcelain in areas subject to extreme temperatures, including basements or attics, crazing is likely to occur. Sudden changes in temperature can also cause crazing.
Signs of Repair
Many antique porcelain buyers want items that are in original condition, even if they’re damaged a bit. If they notice that the pieces have been repaired, they may not be as interested. A black light can be used to reveal glue or modern paint that might escape a visual inspection. Some professional repairs may not devalue the item as much as amateur repairs will.