“How much is my China cabinet worth”? Well, Antique China Cabinets can fetch a lot of money if appropriately evaluated. Through this blog, we will help you understand all about China cabinets.
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China Cabinet was one of the most decorated furniture in any household scenario once upon a time. The concept of displaying all your beloved glassware and precious crockeries was not just about pride and stature but also showcased generations of rich cultural heritage.
We all have one piece of furniture at home that has been a part of the interior decoration for decades. But if you have ever though to yourself: “how much is my china cabinet worth?”, I am sure you would not have got any clear answers.
History and memories aside, antique china cabinets are perhaps one of the most intricately designed vintage furniture among everything else.
Understanding the History Behind These Used China Cabinets
Often referred to as a collector’s item, the price of China Cabinets range between a few dollars and millions. It is all in the details and the history behind the origin of the said Cabinet. From its style to the era it was built in, only an expert can accurately estimate its value.
The Beginning of China Cabinets
It all began in the 1600 century when the Queen of England decided to display her vast collection of China. They installed specially designed cabinets with display racks to showcase her pride and joy. However, what interested the aristocratic audience was the display cabinets made out of rich quality timber.
This was how the trend of adding China Cabinets into the household design began. Since then, these cabinets have been passed on for generations. Experts believe that if a vintage China Cabinet retains at least 60 percent of its original structural integrity, it can fetch a hefty market price.
Getting To Know Your Cabinet
The time frame between the 16th and 19th centuries was a revolutionary period for furniture makers worldwide. However, the Queen of England made the China Cabinet a viral sensation, with many variations of this cabinet type over the centuries.
So, it is essential to know the history that has been passed through generations in your family.
These cabinets generally have three sections with particular detailing on the central open display section. The primary purpose of Breakfront cabinets is to display book collections.
Mainly placed in the dining room, the China Cabinets have an extensive glass display with multiple shelving for the crockeries and chinaware. With a three side wooden framework, the China Cabinet has a glass display on the front face.
Often mistaken as China Cabinet, they are slightly different in the designing aspect. Unlike a China Cabinet, Curio Cabinets have glass panels on the side and the front section. Only the back panel and the body frame are made of wood. Curio Cabinet offers a broader and clearer display range.
These freestanding pieces of furniture generally have a glass display or a cabinet, or both together. In addition to displaying the artifacts, things can be stored in the drawers and cabinets with doors and shelves. Vintage Hutch is in great demand today in addition to China cabinets because of their multi-functional aspects.
Once you know the exact type of Cabinet you have, it’s time to move to the next step. Wondering how much your China cabinet can fetch? Let’s find out.
Getting to Know How Much Is My China Cabinet Worth.
If you are wondering, “How much is my China Cabinet worth?” It is time to find out a few details about it.
Inspect the piece thoroughly
From the family history, you are bound to have a basic idea of the age of the Cabinet. However, check for Patina or a thin mellow finish on the metal handles and knobs to get a better perspective. This is the first indication of whether your china cabinet is a vintage one or not.
Fix minor issues
Loose overhanging screws and nails are a common problem in this older furniture. Age and rusting can cause these nails and screws to protrude out from odd places. Many times cabinet drawers and doors do not operate smoothly because of these minor damages.
It is best not to touch the original paintwork done on the wooden Cabinet. Paint has a distinctive pattern of aging. Fine cracks and scuff marks in the paint finish are sublime yet very effective proof of aging.
Check the inside panels.
The inside panels of a Vintage cabinet are less prone to wear and tear, so it is best to scrutinize the inside for finer details. For example, if the China cabinet has dovetails, its value is automatically increased. Expert and fine craftsmanship created dovetails.
The fan-shaped cutout technique was used to join two wood pieces between the 16th and 18th centuries.
The modern-day china cabinets rarely have dovetail joints. Even if they have, it is always delicate and symmetrical, proving that they are machine-made rather than handmade.
Examine the glass of the cabinets
These century-old china Cabinets generally have glass casings on the cabinet doors and racks. The older cabinets have handmade glass installations which can be easily verified.
The older glasses typically have a wavy finish with many tiny air bubbles entrapped, particularly around the edges.
Check for signatures and labels.
Century-old cabinets, particularly intricate wooden furniture like China Cabinets, were often made by well-known and expert craftsmen. They generally had a signature or logo that they often carved out on the Cabinet.
Mostly inconspicuous, these signatures and logos or watermarks are an exemplary record of the work done by the particular designer.
Look on the backside or inside the cabinet drawers to know about the maker, thus increasing its valuation quote further.
Ask for an expert opinion.
China Cabinets are certainly not lightweight. The pure and high-quality wood used in making the Cabinet is just one of the many reasons for its massive size and weight.
Click a few good quality and high definition photographs and visit a few local antique dealers to show them. Antique dealers generally have a perfect idea about the age and value of this wooden furniture.
A few simple details like the design, pattern, color, etc., can tell a great deal about its history and worth.
Revamping Your Old China Cabinet To Increase Its Market Value
Sometimes antique China Cabinets may not have a valuation as per your expectations. There can be many reasons for that. Did you know that you could give your old china cabinet a makeover and increase its worth?
It’s a fairly straightforward deal. Get your creative mind to work and add small and cost-effective detailing to the Cabinet, and voila! If the job is done right, you can fetch anywhere from just a few hundred dollars to at least a few grand.
Please give it a nice paint finish.
Age can be brutal on the natural wooden finish. Buff it up with excellent quality police and wood varnish. If you are in the mood for a bit of an old statement, add a splash of bright colors.
Add stained glass panels.
There is something very refreshing about Stained glass. It is a classic add-on that never gets old. With time older glass of the display section can crack or have scratches on them. To create a vibrant statement, replace the broken and scratched old traditional hand-woven glass with stained work.
Add dividers to make sections.
Old China cabinets were made to display dinnerware in a spacious manner. You can add small dividers and subsections to give it a unique look and extra counter space.
Add unique handles and knobs.
The first sections to damage or wear out are the knobs and handles. Replace these handles and knobs with cool and chic retro-style artifacts that draw attention.
These are straightforward ideas that can revamp the look of your age-old and boring Vintage China Cabinet into a fascinating and bold piece.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you tell if a china cabinet is an antique?
Not all China Cabinets are antique. While the best proof of authenticating its age is simply by confirming from your family, a second opinion from an expert antique dealer is critical.
Minor signs of paint lightening, design, artistry, etc., may give you a rough idea, but it is only an expert handler who can say if you have an antique China cabinet or not.
What can I do with an old china cabinet?
Old China Cabinet is often made of outstanding quality that’s meant to last for centuries. While the best use of an old China Cabinet is to give it a nice makeover and display it proudly, the alternate choice is to sell it. If the correct evaluation is done, it can fetch quite a good deal of money.
Does anyone buy china cabinets anymore?
Antique China cabinets are among the most sought-after collector’s items. From art galleries to modern homes and museums, China cabinets are displayed almost anywhere with a vintage theme.
How much does it cost to refinish a china cabinet?
Refinishing used China Cabinets that are hundreds of years old can cost anywhere between a few dollars to thousands depending on the work needed. Sometimes, the wooden finishing and smoothing or the paintworks are so rare, and high quality that retouches and re-corrections can cost a lot.
Know Your Cabinet Well Before Sending It Away!
Vintage China Cabinets may look like a dramatic and odd accessory in a modern-day household setting. Still, these cabinets often become the focal point of attention due to their intricate detail works and fine wood finish.
This is why they are so much in demand. After all, it is no joke when someone is ready to shell out thousands of dollars for something so old. Knowing the history and details of the Cabinet will help you get its reasonable market value.
Why waste time placing a Craigslist ad when you can get to know its worth well first?