Sunday, May 31, 2009

Hooray for the Internet!

Andrew here...just made a great find at an auction in rural Illinois thanks to the Internet. That's right, I found, "examined", and arranged for bidding all online. Clearly, I'm a HUGE fan of the Internet within the antiques business. In fact, as we've been talking about getting "green," I'm thinking more and more that we may need to do away with auction catalogs. They're pretty and, frankly, very satisfying to put together, but they're becoming increasingly unnecessary. It's a lot of paper to print and a lot of energy to ship. And in the majority of auctions that have a print catalog, you can find every bit of information on that house's website, and in many cases, more information. At work (at 2 different houses), I have long maintained that we don't print the catalogs to sell the stuff (the marketing machine is far larger than the printed catalog), but rather to sell our services to potential consignors. Personally, I have bid in numerous auctions around the country, but only regularly received 2 auctions catalogs. Sure, there are times I'd love to get the big glossy NY catalogs at home, but really, they'd just end up in the recycling bin in 2 weeks anyway, so why get them?

What do you think?

BTW...the blanket chest I purchased at Fricker Auctions is below. Made in northern Indiana, likely in a Mennonite community and by a maker who has some connection to Soap Hollow, Pennsylvania.


james conrad said...

Yeah, i agree on the catalog thingy EXCEPT, when theres a really outstanding collection going on the block. Pook & Pook handled the Machmer collection last year and i ordered the catalog, it was in book form and had some really gorgeous pic's of some really fabulous PA painted furniture.
Other than something like that though, the internet has made paper catalogs kinda obsolete.

Hollie and Andrew said...

Absolutely...important collections (either because of the collector(s) or the theme) can be great resources, so a print catalog is certainly warranted.