Antique experts are aghast at the treatment vented on a rare antique Chinese vase by its owner. Slightly marred by a chip to the rim, she decided to “tidy it up” – by haphazardly hacking off the rest of the rim. As a result, she slashed its value from around £250,000 to just £50,000.
The owner – who wishes to remain anonymous – inherited the vase but later gave it to a friend, minus its rim. Eventually it was returned. She was about to throw it in the bin when she saw a similar vase sell for £192,000 at auction she contacted an auctioneer, who instantly recognised it as a rare Qing Dynasty vase, made for the Daoguang Emperor. Its pre-sale estimate is £30,000, though the strength of the Chinese market means it will probably sell for far more, despite its condition.
Unfortunately, antique dealers in Lancashire see similar things with the antique desks and Victorian dining chairs brought to their shops for appraisal. Expertly restored, a piece of antique marquetry furniture can realise many times its original worth. Yet when the repairs are poorly tackled by an over-enthusiastic amateur, the value can plummet.
TV series Restoration Roadshow recently demonstrated this, on an antique desk with missing veneers. Hours of painstaking work with a paintbrush, a “donor” piece of the same age and quality, specialist glues and wood dyes and years of experience were required to bring it back to its full beauty.
If you are thinking of Restoring an antique chest, dining table or antique desk, see a Lancashire antique dealer for some expert advice. After all, it might just be a Gillows!
No comments yet.