Dig Antiques - Real stuff without the fluff.

January 2010

New: The Shops at Dig Antiques

We are pleased to announce the opening of The Shops at Dig Antiques. The Shops are operated by dealers and individuals who offer antiques for sale. We only started offering this service one week ago and already have six Shops!

Please check out the antiques they already have listed for sale. Of course, the antiques are also included in the search engine results!

Have you been looking for a way to sell antiques on the web? Tired of eBay and the listing and commission fees? Having your own Shop on Dig Antiques may be just what you need to kick off 2010. For only $149/year, your Shop will be:

  • Easy to setup
  • Easy to manage
  • Flexible
  • Specifically yours

Open your Shop today and be selling tonight! Learn more here.

Already have a website? You still may want to open a Shop for additional exposure. You can include a link in your Shop Profile back to your own website.


Searching for Paint

During 2009, over 12% of the top 200 search phrases on Dig Antiques included the word "paint". Examples include "painted cupboard", "blue paint", "painted pantry box", and "paint decorated". We also saw the top searches include a specific color such as "blue panty box" or "red dry sink". As of January 19, 2010, searching for the term "paint" on Dig Antiques returns 4047 results across 300 antique websites.

Searching for paint is still a favorite pastime for collectors and dealers. Finding an antique with great paint is tough - and it seems to be getting tougher. So many pieces were stripped of their original surface, heavily used (and abused) or simply stored in a destructive manner. When you find a piece with original paint in great condition it's such a joy. You want to guard its future from the further ravages of time.

In early America, painters moved from town to town mixing their heavily guarded paint formulas, both oil and milk based, as they went. Most did not sign their pieces and that makes it especially challenging to attribute a specific artist to a specific piece. Most often the attribution happens indirectly through tax and client household records kept at the time. It is a time intensive process with the majority of artists remaining unknown.

The value of a painted piece is heavily tied to its surface as well as its form. An experienced eye can evaluate if the paint is original. An old painted surface is dry. The less wear the more valuable the piece, although many collectors do appreciate some wear in a piece. For instance, an old painted cupboard with paint worn off or perhaps some dirt ground in to the surface (aka wear) around the knob means the piece was used and makes the rest of the surface more authentic.

Over time paint oxidizes and can fade. You may see a piece where the outer surface that has been consistently exposed to light appears to be a different color then an area that's been covered. This is totally normal and in fact shows that the piece hasn't been touched-up. An old painted surface may also dry to the point where it begins to crack. These cracks are also perfectly acceptable. Some forgers try to fake this craquelure but the cracks are more uniform on the surface of these fakes while on a genuine antique surface the craquelure is less consistent.

There are many good books and articles that make great references if you're interested in reading more about original paint. Here are just a few:

We hope you are taking advantage of all that Dig Antiques has to offer. If you have comments or questions, please use the Community forums and let us know. We do view them regularly. Thanks for your support.

Tom & Sheila Baker

We Dig It...do you? Dig Antiques - Real stuff without the fluff.

Search Showcase

Dig Antiques continues to experience a growing number of searches each month. Have you searched for antiques recently?.

2009 in Summary

Below is a summary of the twenty most popular search phrases during 2009.

1. Stoneware crocks
2. Windsor chair
3. Hooked rug
4. Gameboard
5. Trade sign
6. Cupboard
7. Dry sink
8. Pantry box
9. Stoneware
10. Braided rug
11. Blanket chest
12. Stoneware dog
13. Farm table
14. Firkin
15. Folk art
16. Decoy
17. Weathervane
18. Clock
19. Redware
20. Bread board


Thank you to the following current advertisers for their support of Dig Antiques:

Baker & Co. Antiques
California Country Antique Show
Doodletown Farm
Fine Folk Art & Antiques
Granthum 1763 Antiques
Antiques at Hillwood Farms
J. Compton Gallery
JD Wahl Antiques
Quail Country Antiques
West Branch Antiques
1759 Salt Box Antiques

If you are interested in supporting Dig Antiques through advertising, please click here.


Contact Us

For general information:

Website: www.digantiques.com
Email: diginfo@digantiques.com
Interested in adding a website?
Want to open a Shop on Dig?
Need to build/update a website?


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