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This large enameled and jeweled Jay Strongwater mirror made $4,100 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2017. Image courtesy of Bill Hood & Sons Art & Antique Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

Loving the luxurious, glittering design vision of Jay Strongwater

This large enameled and jeweled Jay Strongwater mirror made $4,100 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2017. Image courtesy of Bill Hood & Sons Art & Antique Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

This large enameled and jeweled Jay Strongwater mirror made $4,100 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2017. Image courtesy of Bill Hood & Sons Art & Antique Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — After 15 years of playing with design on a small scale by making jewelry, Jay Strongwater moved on to statement mirrors, fanciful figurines, ornate picture frames and even small furnishings — all bejeweled.

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A 15.5in Regina Corona style 35 music box with an art glass front and an eight-day Seth Thomas clock earned $27,500 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2020. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

Music boxes signaled age of mechanical entertainment

 

A 15.5in Regina Corona style 35 music box with an art glass front and an eight-day Seth Thomas clock earned $27,500 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2020. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

A 15.5in Regina Corona style 35 music box with an art glass front and an eight-day Seth Thomas clock earned $27,500 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2020. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Music boxes, the iPods of centuries past, come in a variety of shapes and styles, from large, upright coin-op examples that were designed for boardwalks, arcades and other public venues, to smaller, more delicate models ideal for boudoirs and other private spaces.

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A JF and BF Meek #1 brass Kentucky reel made $3,500 plus the buyer’s premium in October 2015. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

Antique and vintage fishing reels hook collectors

 

A JF and BF Meek #1 brass Kentucky reel made $3,500 plus the buyer’s premium in October 2015. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

A JF and BF Meek #1 brass Kentucky reel made $3,500 plus the buyer’s premium in October 2015. Image courtesy of Dan Morphy Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Fishing is a quiet pastime that allows people to commune with nature as well as procure their dinner. Vintage fishing gear, from lures and flies to rods and reels — especially reels — is coveted. Whether outfitting a vacation home in the style of an old-fashioned Adirondack fishing camp or just putting together a small collection that brings on waves of nostalgia for childhoods spent fishing on riverbanks under the watch of beloved relatives, fishing gear is a popular collecting genre.

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Leland Little embraces auction spaces, both digital and physical

 

 

Leland Little said working in an environment that exudes energy spreads from the directors to the entire team and to consignors and buyers: “It’s very much a full circle energy cycle that allows growth and opportunity.” Image courtesy of Leland Little Auctions.

Leland Little said working in an environment that exudes energy spreads from the directors to the entire team and to consignors and buyers: “It’s very much a full circle energy cycle that allows growth and opportunity.” Image courtesy of Leland Little Auctions.

HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. – Leland Little, founder and president of his eponymous auction house Leland Little Auctions, specializes in selling the past but is forward-facing. His auction house delivers high-end items in a wide range of categories. While much of the selling takes place online, five years ago, Little envisioned a gallery-like space that would embody a 21st-century model for bringing collectors, buyers and sellers together under one roof to learn as well as buy and sell. The expansion was designed by architect Richard Gurlitz. This is all part of Little’s vision to build his business and anticipate future needs while tackling the day-to-day business of running an auction house.

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The peony and the peacock: classic motifs in Asian art

A Qing famille rose Peony vase with a garlic head mouth attained $130,000 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2019. Image courtesy of Gianguan Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

A Qing famille rose Peony vase with a garlic head mouth attained $130,000 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2019. Image courtesy of Gianguan Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Asian art and antiques are rich in symbolism. Among the most beloved fauna and flora motifs in this region and culture are peacocks and peonies — so much so that the two have even become fixtures in Western art.

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The skull of a Triceratops prosus recovered in Montana brought $306,864 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Dreweatts Donnington Priory and LiveAuctioneers.

Jurassic Park spurs new generation of fossil collectors

The skull of a Triceratops prosus recovered in Montana brought $306,864 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Dreweatts Donnington Priory and LiveAuctioneers.


The skull of a Triceratops prosus recovered in Montana brought $306,864 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Dreweatts Donnington Priory and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Dinosaurs have not walked the earth in millions of years but they remain a source of fascination. People of all ages still dig them, literally and figuratively. Not only are dinosaur fossils of high interest, they are pop culture icons. On the eve of the 29th anniversary of the release of Jurassic Park, which debuted on June 11, 1993, and in anticipation of the June 10, 2022 release of Jurassic World Dominion, it makes sense to look at collecting dinosaur fossils. While it’s highly unlikely that serious collectors who drop hundreds of thousands for a fossil will be influenced to collect by a new movie, dinosaurs’ starring role in an endless parade of hit TV shows and movies should encourage the next generation of natural history collectors.

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Architectural wrought iron: shapely decorative accents

Edgar Brandt’s Paon wrought-iron fireplace screen achieved €34,000 ($35,598) plus the buyer’s premium in May 2022. Image courtesy of Quittenbaum Kunstauktionen GmbH and LiveAuctioneers

Edgar Brandt’s Paon wrought-iron fireplace screen achieved €34,000 ($35,598) plus the buyer’s premium in May 2022. Image courtesy of Quittenbaum Kunstauktionen GmbH and LiveAuctioneers

NEW YORK – Hand-wrought iron farmyard and kitchen tools, worked by blacksmiths over fiery forges, were unadorned until the early 1800s. As the craft evolved, however, wooden cupboards, dowry chests, sideboards and wardrobes were secured with increasingly ornate iron hinges, keys and locks. Realizing that the functional can also be beautiful, blacksmiths ran with the notion, producing all sorts of decorative wonders from wrought iron.

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This James Bond 007 Aston Martin DB5 diecast model toy car achieved $1,100 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Van Eaton Galleries and LiveAuctioneers.

Corgi Toys put film icons in the driver’s seat

This James Bond 007 Aston Martin DB5 diecast model toy car achieved $1,100 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Van Eaton Galleries and LiveAuctioneers.

This James Bond 007 Aston Martin DB5 diecast model toy car achieved $1,100 plus the buyer’s premium in January 2021. Image courtesy of Van Eaton Galleries and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Cars have always been the heart and soul of Corgi, Britain’s best-known producer of die-cast toys. Initially released as a brand by Mettoy Playcraft in 1956 and manufactured in Swansea, a coastal city in Wales, Corgi became an independent company in 1984. While it has dabbled in aviation toys, Corgi is best known for its vehicle lines, from its iconic VW bus to a replica of James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5. Toy vehicles have long been a staple of the collectibles market and there are Corgi vehicles to suit all tastes and interests, from replicas of real everyday vehicles to fictional ones that only exist on TV or in movies.

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A Qing dynasty-style jade emerald bangle made $700,000 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2018. Image courtesy of Harvard Auction Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

Jade jewelry: green is keen, and white is a delight

A Qing dynasty-style jade emerald bangle made $700,000 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2018. Image courtesy of Harvard Auction Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

A Qing dynasty-style jade emerald bangle made $700,000 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2018. Image courtesy of Harvard Auction Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Jade is having a bit of a moment, which is a pleasant surprise. Until recently, the gemstone was thought of as too traditional, strictly belonging to Grandmother’s or Auntie’s generation. Today, Instagram is filled with photos of young women flaunting their prized jade jewelry, and desirable pieces are bringing strong prices at auction.

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1990s kids are grown-ups now, bidding on childhood faves

A 1999 Pokemon shadowless holographic uncut proof sheet containing seven Charizard cards achieved $234,171 including the buyer’s premium in June 2021. Image courtesy of Hake’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

A 1999 Pokemon shadowless holographic uncut proof sheet containing seven Charizard cards achieved $234,171 including the buyer’s premium in June 2021. Image courtesy of Hake’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK  — The 1990s was a heady decade: the Internet became available to the public, Nelson Mandela was elected president of South Africa, Prince Charles and Princess Diana divorced and several nations joined forces to wage war in the Persian Gulf. In the realm of pop culture, Nirvana conquered the music charts with their anthem Smells Like Teen SpiritFriends debuted on TV, and the first Harry Potter book was published. Like every decade, the 1990s had its share of now-iconic toys, which ’90s kids — now adults — want to buy back. And that’s why 1990s toys are hot now.

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