Holiday season is around the corner and many of us are planning to get a perfect present for our nearest and dearest. As every year it is hard to come up with something new, thoughtful and not overly priced. If you want to get something other than the latest electronic gadget or a fresh pair of leather gloves, it’s time to look on a second hand market. Check out our present guide and learn more about our top 5 ideas for perfect pre-loved gifts!
Buying pre-loved items via online auctions or collector’s community forums is getting much more popular in recent years and according to statistical estimates it will reach over 14.6 billion U.S. dollars by 2027.
Not only can you find real treasures on the second hand market, you can both save a lot of money and prove being thoughtful of our planet, as you won’t be buying newly produced items. Moreover the chance that you will find something unique that will make your loved ones happy is much higher. There is also another advantage of shopping second hand. Most of the antique dealers and auction houses are established online so you may be done with your gift hunting without leaving the comfort of your home.
You can never go wrong with a nice set of fine or vintage costume jewellery or an elegant watch as a present for your partner, friends or parents. November and December are months where almost all auction houses around the world plan their luxury items where you can find real rarities for a fraction of the price of newly bought items. Moreover, you have a chance to get an original period piece, such as Victorian, Edwardian or Art Deco jewellery or luxurious brands such as Cartier or Tiffany & Co from previous collections.
Would you like to give a high-end or a collectible watch to someone you love? Once again, a second hand market is where you should take a look. Well established brands such as Rolex, Longines, Patek Philippe, Richard Mille or Omega are easy to find and with a good selection of models. You can either get them during an online or live auction, and as they are quite popular, you can check several auctions for the same watch model to get the best price.
Related: Time to Talk About Watches
Do you have tea or coffee lovers within your nearest circle? Getting a beautiful porcelain breakfast set for one or two or an entire tea or coffee service may be what you are looking for. A beautiful pre-war or older European and Asian thin and hand painted porcelain does not have to cost much if you know where and what to look for. Antique chinese porcelain sets can be found for less than $100 depending on the size and age. European porcelain from such manufacturers as Meissen, Vienna, Wedgewood, Sèvres or Limoges can be found very cheaply per piece or set in local antiques stores or online auctions. WIth intricate golden decorations and hand painted motives, a porcelain cup or a plate will be a cherished gift and a pleasure to use. It is important to check for the quality of the piece and breakage and signs of earlier renovations.
All art is second hand, unless you commission an entirely new piece by a living artist. There is a great variety of medium and historical periods one can choose their present from. Oil paintings, watercolours, photographs, drawing, prints, sculptures or mixed media artworks…you name it, can soon decorate a wall or a cabinet of your friends and family and be a very original present that will remind them of you whenever they will look at it. Looking for a perfect piece of art it is good to do a small research of what the person you want to give a present to is like. A colour palette, something abstract or maybe more traditional, maybe they like photography or would be happy with a 3-dimensional piece of art? The truth is artworks do not have to cost millions of dollars, and you can find very fine, quality pieces already for less than $100, be it a modern abstract painting or even a less known old master from the 18th century. Good choice is to buy something from contemporary artists that are just starting to establish their position on the market. Not only will you support their art but who knows, maybe in a few years the art piece you got will rise in value?
Second hand furniture, lamps, small decorative figures, silverware, stationary accessories… There is so much to choose from this category that could make your loved ones happy. These items do not have to be very expensive, and they often come at a price that is lower than a newly made items and there is much more variety than to choose from. Is your mother dreaming about vintage Tiffany lamp or a fabulous Art Nouveau vase for her living room? Or maybe your friend is looking for some industrial decor to their apartment. Silver cigar cutter four your father? A pair of vintage designer Ikea chairs in scandi-style for your partner? The second hand antique dealers and auction houses may have exactly what you are looking for.
Are you looking for collectible items? Second-hand market is where you should look. Auction houses, dealerships and collector’s communities are where you should look for that special Mickey Mantle sports card for the football enthusiast in your family or a set of discontinued Pokemon cards for your kids. Do you have a Marvel or DC comic fan around? The specialist collectible auctions are filled with the Avengers, Spiderman or Batman and Superman special editions that are not so easy to get even in specialised comic book stores.
Your brother love Star Wars? Why not get him original 1980’s Hasbro Star Wars toys in original packaging? Did your sister love Barbies when she was growing up? Vintage Barbies are growing in popularity and can be still bought in almost perfect condition with all the accessories. And how about a gift for yourself and your young children together? Retro lego sets can be found still unpacked and with all original pieces for a fair price. Would you like to go on another Pirate adventure with the Red Beard Runner to Volcano Island?
On the other hand, if you feel you have something at home that you would like to let go off, maybe it’s time to sell it and let it live a new life in a home where it will be loved, used and cherished? A lot of auctions are happening now and it is good to check if you have something at home that is sought by the collectors. It is always good to check how much your items are worth by making an online valuation. Our experienced experts can appraise items in more than 50 different categories and we at Value My Stuff can help you find a suitable auction house to sell it to someone who is looking for it. Click here if you want to appraise your items!