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Antiques roadshow primer : the introductory guide to antiques and collectibles from the most-watched show on PBS
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Book description

Family Heirlooms & Flea Market Finds


Part adventure, part history lesson, and part treasure hunt, Antiques Roadshow, PBS's hit series, shares its passion and expertise in a jam-packed, thoroughly illustrated introduction to antiques and collectibles.

What does "EPNS" mean on a piece of silver? How can furniture be judged by its hardware? Why touch diamond jewelry to your upper lip? How can a Peale be identified by the subject's eyelids? The primer introduces all the essentials: style, period, provenance, pattern, rarity, motifs, maker's marks--plus a running feature called "Old News," listing items that people love to collect but that are just too common to be of value.

What's waiting to be found in your attic?

Anitques Roadshow draws millions and millions of viewers to the edge of their seats, as it brings independent dealers and specialists from the country's leading auction houses together to appraise family antiques at events held around the country.

- (Workman Press.)

Through its traveling events and enormously popular series on PBS, Antiques Roadshow has taught us to look for hidden treasures in our attics--perhaps to find, as other lucky souls have, a Baltimore album quilt worth $50,000 or a Seymour card table like the one picked up at a garage sale for $25 and subsequently appraised at $200,000.

Now beginning collectors, antiques lovers, auction-goers, and flea-market mavens can extend their knowledge and hone their instincts with the Antiques Roadshow Primer. A take-you-by-the-hand introductory guide, the primer focuses on traditional categories of antiques and collectibles, including jewelry, silver, paintings, furniture, dolls, toys, metalwork, and porcelain. Not only each chapter but each lively page is brimming with information, providing and introductory overview that will help transform the enthusiast into a connoisseur.

Take "Furniture," for example. It explains how our own craftsmen interpreted and "Americanized" a melting pot of styles like Chippendale and French Empire. How to identify the four categories of old furniture: antique, used, reproduction, and, best of all, period, How to distinguish between old and new veneer and find the distinct pattern of a circular saw, indicating a piece made after 1840. And all of this comes just in the first five pages.

Along the way extensive illustrations, photographs, and charts show both classic and quirky examples, highlighting important visual details, tracing the history of artists and styles, and capturing pertinent Roadshow discoveries. Experts in the field contribute their own tips, sharing such secrets as how to use a scratch test to tell if a stone is Imperial jade or nephrite, and why ill-defined fingers on a bronze statue mean it's a reproduction.

Every collector asks two questions about a piece: Is it old? Is it valuable? And every page of the Antiques Roadshow Primer helps to supply the answer. - (Workman Press.)

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