I learned sad news about two of my favorite antiques stores when I met a friend for lunch recently. One store was already closed with all the merchandise gone, and another posted Going out of Business signs in the window. These stores had their heyday ten or fifteen years ago when everyone wanted to own a piece of the past. The past was defined as eighty to one hundred years old. Shoppers were mid-fifties and older.
We collected furniture, dishes and doodads from our grandparent’s generation. I rarely see unique items to add to my collections anymore. This scarcity tells me that all the good pieces are already sold or no one cares about that type of miscellany today. I’m also more selective about adding items that will be difficult to sell or give away later.
There aren’t many estates of that era left to re-sell as antiques. As the antique store owners have aged, the shoppers have aged with them. Many folks downsize into smaller houses or condos at retirement and stop collecting.
Collectors today are in their thirties and forties and what they seek is mid-century modern furnishing or stylized patterns. The mid-century items remind them of their grandparents.
My near-retirement age dates me more like an antique than some items for sale.