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Cleveland, OH, United States, 2006/02/01 - Perhaps your great-grandmother saved hers? Antique and collectible experts Ralph and Terry Kovel, authors of Kovel's Antiques and Collectibles Price Guide.
Whether you love them or hate them, Valentine's Day sentiments have been exchanged since the seventeenth century. Collectibles experts Ralph and Terry Kovel have tips for collecting vintage valentines.
Have you saved every valentine you've ever received? Perhaps your great-grandmother saved hers? Antique and collectible experts Ralph and Terry Kovel, authors of Kovel's Antiques and Collectibles Price Guide, say it's worthwhile to hunt through your family's cabinets and attics for old valentines. Some are worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars!
Since the 1980s, holiday collecting has grown increasingly popular. It started off with Christmas, then expanded to Halloween, and now includes Valentine's Day. With February 14th right around the corner, you might think about saving some of your gifts and cards for your grandchildren. The general rule is whether homemade or professionally printed and assembled, the more elaborate, intricate, delicate, and colorful a valentine, the higher its value.
Here are some important tips for collecting vintage and antique valentines. The first thing to remember is that three-dimensional valentines and valentines with movable parts tend to be worth more. Second, try to buy valentines in near perfect condition. Repairs are expensive, if not impossible. Third, check the boxes of assorted odds and ends at garage and rummage sales.
A few valentines may be mixed in with the family pictures and other ephemera. Fourth, unused valentines are worth more than those with signatures. Fifth, valentines made in the mid 1800s by Esther Howland, the first American to mass produce valentines, are almost impossible to find and are high priced! Sixth, stay away from single sheet "penny dreadfuls" made during the 1930s through the 1950s. These comic valentines don't sell well because their message is often insulting.
Follow these six tips and you will find that collecting vintage and antique valentines can be an fascinating and rewarding hobby.
About the Kovels
Ralph and Terry Kovel are the authors of more than 95 books about collecting and antiques. Hailed by Parade magazine as "The duke and duchess of the antiques world," the Kovels publish Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles (an award-winning newsletter) and write a syndicated weekly newspaper column distributed to more than 150 newspapers. They appeared weekly on the HGTV program, Flea Market Finds with the Kovels. Their popular website with price information is kovels.com. The Kovels' next book is Kovels' Bottles Price List, 13th Edition, published by Random House, on April 14th.