Use the following tips to help find and keep a collection of miniature items:
Tip #1: Collect something that appeals to you. While collectors do collect miniatures based on their value, they will also quickly tell you that it is a labor of love. Whether you are collecting dolls or ships in a bottle, it should be a collection that speaks to you. The best collections are meticulously gathered over the years until the they turn into something truly special. Only those who truly love the subject matter will expend the time and energy necessary to truly build a collection.
Tip #2: Do your research. Once you start your collection, you will want to buy items that will increase in value. This means buying originals, not reproductions. However, in the case of many antique miniatures, especially dolls, vendors are not entirely upfront when it comes to their origins. A customer might buy a porcelain doll thinking it is an original from the 19th century only to later realize it is a reproduction. Do your research and the ways you can tell a real miniature from its reproduction counterpart.
Tip#3: Keep your collection safe. As your collection grows, keep it protected. A good way to keep dust off of your items is to buy a curio cabinet that can hold some of the pieces of your collection. Items that are made out of delicate fabrics, like a doll’s clothing, need to be kept out of direct sunlight, since it can fade the colors. Finally, if you have a particularly valuable collection, you should probably get it insured.
Miniature items for collectors, such as dolls and figurines can be very valuable. Various stores will have collectibles for sale throughout the year, including mini toys, porcelain dolls, model soldiers and cars, and other accessories. If you want to find a store or individual that will sell miniature items you can look on the Internet or in a phone book. You will want to call before visiting any retail location and ask if they have the type of figurine you collect. Some may specialize in having angels, dollhouses, or antique toys while other places will have a better collection of model cars, airplanes, boats, and ships. Tin collectibles can be hard to find in modern stores, which is why you will need to dig a little deeper to increase the amount of collectibles you have. Horses and jockeys, baby dolls, and military figurines will range in price, depending on when they were made and who you buy from. Vintage figurines, depending on the quality they're in, can be very expensive. However, if the piece will add to your collection or even complete it, it may be a great investment. Do some research and talk to other collectors to see if you can find the price the figurine you're looking for will probably go for. You may be able to find it online but it would be best to see it in person before making a purchase to ensure that it is genuine and in the condition you want it to be in.