What counts as antique furniture

What is the difference between antique and vintage?

Antiques, vintage and collectibles, retro and classics

You have likely noticed a lot of different terms that define "old" while searching for bargains and even shopping online. These range from antiques, vintage and collectibles to retro and classics, but what does it all mean?

Well that depends on what you are buying or selling. For example, a car that is obviously old can be classified as a classic if it is not yet old enough to qualify as antique. Clothes that most buyers are looking for are usually considered vintage if they are not very old. Furniture, such as mid-century modern pieces, could be considered retro as the designs are very different from traditional furniture styles. If you dig deeper into what these terms actually mean, you can buy and sell old stuff with greater confidence.

The term "antique"

Buyers who know how to correctly describe their goods know respect. Calling antiquity something that was done in the 1950s is just wrong. If you use the term antique when an item is way too new for that designation, you will look like you don't know what you are doing. In addition, if they misrepresent what you are selling this way, your prospects may not trust you.

When is something antique?

How old is one Antiquity? The period set by the customs service, which is widely used in the ancient field, is an object that is at least 100 years old. This bare bones definition mostly makes things easy to understand. The scale slides every year as more and more things fall into the ancient range.

What is antique?

If you don't know exactly when a piece was produced, there is certainly a little more to guess. However, collectors know that something that was made in the Edwardian period (around 1901-1910, but the entire style was extended to the teenagers as well) or older is now old. Studying the characteristics of items from different eras such as arts and crafts, Art Nouveau, and Art Deco, to name a few, can blur the line between ancient and vintage. It's also good to learn about reproductions and revivals of ancient styles, especially Victorian and Art Deco.

There are some antique experts who look at antiques more in terms of historical significance or a design perspective, and they can extend the rule a bit to include some newer items and exclude others based on their personal preferences. Most antique dealers, however, stick to the "100 years or older" rule.

The term "vintage"

For many decades, the term “collector's item” stood for anything that wasn't old enough to fall under the antique umbrella. The use of the word Vintage The 80s and 90s was largely associated with certain genres, such as the aforementioned clothes, costume jewelry, and postcards that weren't old enough to be called antiques.

These days, the term vintage is more likely to cover older items on a blanket than when you go vintage shopping with your friends. It can be seen as the current version of "going antiquing". It goes without saying that this means buying old stuff that has one signature Vintage style regardless of whether these things date back to the 1940s or 1970s.

If you're selling at an online venue that has a mix of legacy merchandise and handcrafted items like Etsy.com, then the term is defined for you. These multi-shop internet businesses have found that anything 20 years old or older is vintage. As with antiques, more and more items fall into the vintage category every year as the scales slide.

Some die-hard collectors make fun of this definition because they don't like to think of something from the early 1990s as a vintage. You use the word collectible much more often with these newer items. However, this term often conjures up visions of beanie babies, limited edition figurines, and similar mass-produced collectibles that, for the most part, are not in great demand or highly valued by today's vintage buyers.

It doesn't matter if you Vintage or prefer collectibles for newer items, just use antique to describe items that are more than 100 years old and you won't go wrong.