ANTIQUES

Figurine of girl with cat is cute but not collectible


Published: Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, April 25, 2013 at 12:18 p.m.

Q: I wonder if you would be able to tell me if this figurine passed down from my great-great-aunt would be worth anything. I am told it is from the 1800s, and the only markings on it are a "2" carved in one side of the base and a "v" painted on the other side.

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This hand-painted bisque, unglazed porcelain figurine has plenty of appeal. (Courtesy of John Sikorski)

V.A., Internet

A: Your hand-painted bisque, unglazed porcelain figurine of a young girl holding a cat has lots of cutesy appeal. I think it was produced in Germany during the late 19th century. There were many ceramics factories in Germany during the Victorian era, producing decorative porcelain figurines for export to America. Potential dollar value is less than $100.

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Q: This object is from my grandmother's home. It is a glass bowl with a silver-fluted edge. I will keep it to enjoy, but wanted to know if it had any value.

E., Internet

A: I think your attractive glass bowl was made in America between World Wars I and II. The fluted edge decorated with an ornate Rococo floral pattern in silver overlay is beautiful. This type of crystal ware and porcelain is referred to as silver overlay, and is a category of collector interest. Both crystal and porcelain were decorated with sterling silver. If you look closely with a hand magnifier after the silver is cleaned, you might find the word "sterling" somewhere in the pattern. The bowl originally was made to sit into a standard and used to serve cake, etc., and often is called a brides' basket. Potential dollar value is less than $100.

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Q: This creamer has been passed down from a great-great-aunt. I would like to know its value. It appears to be gold-plated. It never tarnishes, and it has a very tiny flower pattern all over it. The only marking is the "70" on the bottom.

V.A., Internet

A: Your gold-tone finished creamer was made in America sometime during the mid-20th century. There were a number of china manufacturers producing this type of gold-tone finished tableware. There is no specific collector interest. Potential dollar value is catch-as-catch-can.

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Q: I recently viewed the l940s movie, "The Maltese Falcon." I was intrigued by the lighters used throughout the movie. In checking out desk lighters, I found the following: The first lighters were called strike lighters and were similar to matches. Users would scratch a flint with a wand with a hard metal tip and a wick at the end. It would create sparks, which would ignite the wick, which was soaked with fluid. Have you ever seen one of these? I would really like to "check" these out if you have any information.

D., Internet

A: Yes, I have seen the type of lighter you mention, and I suspect a number of our readers remember them as well. Perhaps someone will drop us a note. For information about them, perhaps a collecting club could fill in the blanks for you. On the Lighter Side is a collecting club whose home base is in Quitman, Texas, that has an international membership. The website is www.otls.com. Good luck.

John Sikorski is an Ocala antiques dealer. He hosts a call-in radio show, "Sikorski's Attic,'' on WUFT-FM (89.1 FM). It can be heard each Saturday from noon to 1 p.m. Send your questions to Sikorski's Attic, c/o The Gainesville Sun, 2700 SW 13th St., Gainesville, FL 32608-2015; or email absantique@aol.com.

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