Antiques need clean, safe home
I met a client during an in-home appraisal evaluation session who had raised six sons in a house with a pristine, fragile and very valuable collection of antique glassware. Her ability to have boys share a house with fragile stemware prompted me to share my tips for protecting your valuables.
Valuable objects — art, antiques, and collectibles — have to live in a stable environment in order to remain in good condition. Here are some tips for keeping your home and your stuff in tip top, clutter-free shape.
Do serious cleaning first. Clean up the kind of dirt that comes in from outside, like mud on your shoes, germs that can grow if you leave food out overnight and the like. Clean it up.
Quick pick me up
How do I achieve this marvel of home cleanliness? About 10 minutes before I head off to bed, I do a quick clean up: Load the dishwasher, put away that jacket that I tossed on a chair when I had to take a phone call, put my gym shoes in the closet, etc. I don’t go full force. I just do a few little things to keep the house in order.
The next morning, I find the house is in reasonably good shape. This nighttime trick prevents the clutter from getting out of hand. When you have a big mountain of cleaning to do, it can be overwhelming. Tidy up!
If you have art or antiques in your home, these objects probably have a regular place where they reside — a home, so to speak. Your canister set has a place where it lives and it probably only moves from that spot when you are baking. Right? After you use the flour or sugar, you put that canister back in its home. This is why most canister sets are handed down from generation to generation. The reason why most canister sets make it from grandmother to granddaughter is because they have a home, are not often relocated or put in danger of getting damaged.
Certain objects like Hummel figurines or Waterford crystal pieces should be in a protected area like a china cabinet or on a dining room sideboard where there isn’t much traffic. Large objects like sculpture, paintings and pieces of antique furniture are rarely moved from their spot. Identify a particular place where small collectibles belong and the result will be a home that’s neater with objects that are not easily damaged.
While I like clean, white cotton cloths for dusting fragile objects, I think that the good old vacuum cleaner is a helpful tool, too. My mother taught us to dust first and then vacuum, so you catch any dust that hit the floor. Dust can built up quickly and it can damage your art, antiques and collectibles. Vacuuming can get rid of the dust you don’t see.
Remember, ventilation is important when it comes to displaying your antiques and collectibles. Art and antiques like to live where you like to live — in a clean, well-ventilated house.
A clean house is the best way to create a stable environment for your valuables.
(Dr. Lori Verderame hosts antiques appraisal events worldwide and is the star appraiser on Discovery channel’s TV show, Auction Kings. Visit www.DrLoriV.com/Events, www.Facebook.com/DoctorLori, or call 888-431-1010.)