April 4, 2024 | Sarah Ng

These Antiques In Your Attic Might Be Worth A Ton Of Money


Time To Look In The "Junk" Pile

Whether you still have your parents' old collectibles or have inherited some interesting antiques from family members, don't be so quick to write them off. You might be sitting on a gold mine.

Antiques-Msn

Concert Posters

Price Range: up to $25,000

If you have an original concert poster hanging around, it may be worth looking into—especially if it's a big artist or band. For instance, at an auction, a 1966 Shea Stadium Beatles concert poster went for $137,000.

Concert postersSteven Miller, Flickr

Equestrian Paintings

Price Range: $200 to $10,000

In 19th-century England, paintings portraying equestrian sports and hunting were all the rage. There's a lot out there: paintings of fox-hunting outings to portraits of jockeys. However, not all equestrian paintings are made equal.

Equestrian Paintingsdaves_archive _inactive, Flickr

Look At The Size

Understandably, sizable equestrian oil paintings with gilded frames fetch a much higher price than smaller, simpler pieces.

Equestrian PaintingJeppestown, Flickr

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Baseball Cards

Price Range: up to 3.2 million

It might be difficult for you to know which of your ancient baseball cards are actually worth any money. But usually, the older the better.

Baseball CardsRyan Hyde, Flickr

Get Them Apppraised

The worth of a baseball card can come down to many factors: the year, the condition, the player, etc. If you find some in your attic, consider getting them properly appraised. Many fetch thousands online.

Baseball CardsLibrary of Congress, Picryl

Video Game Consoles

Price Range: $20 to $360,000

Retro game consoles from the 1980s can fetch a pretty price, but it's best if they are a rare edition or unopened. For instance, at a 2020 auction, a Nintendo PlayStation prototype sold for $360,000. Certain video games can even be worth $20,000.

Retro game consolesbarskefranck, Needpix

"Mastering The Art Of French Cooking" By Julia Child

Price Range: $2,000 and up

In 1961, Julia Child's very first cookbook hit the bookshelves, Mastering The Art of French Cooking. If you happen to be one of the folks who kept their original copy, then you're in luck.

mastering the art of french cooking julia childtrenttsd, Flickr

Look For A First Edition

If you have a first edition of Mastering The Art Of French Cooking with the book jacket, then you have a rare gem on your hands. You can sell it on Ebay or online for a hefty price.

mastering the art of french cooking julia childLindsey B, Flickr

Art Deco Clocks

Price Range: $25 to $1,000

In the 1930s and 1940s, Art Deco clocks were incredibly popular. They may have been relatively small, but their shiny material were luxe: gold details, geometric patterns, and mirrors.

Art Deco ClocksMetropolitan Museum of Art, Picryl

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Look For The Maker

However, not all Art Deco clocks can be sold for the same price. Some go for less than $50, while others can fetch up to $1,000 if they were made by Telechron or Westclox. Always keep an eye out for the maker's name, which can be found on the clockface.

Art Deco Clockartistmac, Flickr

Memorabilia From The Women's Suffrage Movement

Price Range: $50 to priceless

If you have any collectibles from the women's suffrage movement—especially from the years 1890 to 1917—you might have an artifact on hands. 

Memorabilia From The Women's Suffrage MovementLSE Library, Picryl

It Might Belong In A Museum

Certain pieces of memorabilia from the womens' suffrage movement actually belongs in a museum and can be worth thousands. If you have pieces made beyond the movement's most important years, they'll fetch a lower price: pins or buttons.

Memorabilia From The Women's Suffrage MovementUnknown Author, Rawpixel

Midcentury Barware

Price Range: $15 to $1,500

After WWII came to a close, Americans rejoiced. They began hosting cocktail parties and entertaining friends. Many took pride in their fancy barware created by Federal Glass, Libbey, Culver, or Hazel-Atlas. Some of these pieces are sought after today, and can sell for a decent price.

Vintage beer mugsKerry Garvey, Shutterstock

Memorabilia From The Super Bowl

Price Range: up to $4,000

If anyone in your family held on to their old Super Bowl tickets, they might be worth something today. If your tickets have a tell-tale yellow or blue stripe at the top, they might be able to go for $200 to $1,000. But some are worth even more.

Super Bowl  ticketsJoe Parks, Flickr

Look For The Stripes

If your Super Bowl tickets have white stripes, they might worth around $4,000. Keep in mind, however, other factors determine the price, such as the ticket's particular game. For instance, rare tickets would be for Super Bowl II and Super Bowl XII.

A fan displays two tickets for Super Bowl XXXAl Bello, Getty Images

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Federal Style Bull’s Eye Mirrors

Price Range: $100 to $10,000

These mirrors with gilded frames—usually topped by an eagle—were once symbols of American patriotism. The 13 original colonies are supposedly reflected in the frame's 13 balls.

Federal Eagle Mirrordrapetomania, Flickr

The Year Matters

It's important to remember that if your mirror comes from the true Federal era—1780 to 1830—it will be worth much more. Any mirror produced at a later date will be worth much less.

Federal Eagle MirrorSepia Times, Getty Images

Duck Decoys

Price Range: Up to $650,000

Duck decoys? Yes. Duck decoys. In the mid-20th century, these unassuming pieces became collectibles. If you've been handed down a duck decoy, keep a firm grasp on it. At auctions, some have been known to go for hundreds of thousands.

A Duck DecoyCarol VanHook, Flickr

Beatles Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band Vinyl Record

Price Range: Up to $290,500

The Beatles really are the gift that keeps giving. If you just happen to be a proud own of the 1967 record Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, you've got a real moneymaker on your hands. Though the majority of them only go for hundreds, certain copies have been auctioned at $290,500.

Beatles Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band Vinyl RecordBlake Patterson, Flickr

RCA Victor Radios

Price Range: up to 4,000

During the 1930s and 1940s, RCA Victor came out with gorgeous wooden radios and consoles in an Art-Deco style. However, after WWII, the popularity of plastic soared. RCA pivoted to a new range of designs made from nonresin plastics and Bakelite. The resulting tube radios were colorful and streamlined.

RCA Victor radioAlfvanBeem, Wikimedia Commons

Fashion Accessories

Price Range: up to $20,000

Do you have a bin of old clothes and accessories just languishing in a closet or basement? Well, don't just donate those pieces willy-nilly. Keep an eye out for designer brands like Chanel, Hermes, or Louis Vuitton. For instance, a Hermes Birkin bag once sold for $125,000.

Gucci bagpornpawit, Shutterstock

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Look At The Condition

Understandably, less popular brands will fetch a lower price, but the condition of these accessories is very important. If you have a piece made by a designer brand that's in pristine condition, you could be in luck.

silk Hèrmes scarfFortgens Photography, Shutterstock

Persian Rugs

Price Range: $1,000 to $1 million

A handwoven Persian rug becomes more expensive over time. However, your family might have to wait a long time before the rug is considered an antique. 

persian rugWorld Intellectual Property Organization, Flickr

You Have To Wait A Long Time

Persian rugs that are over a century old might be able to sell for wild prices. However, the factors for determining the worth of your rug include: knot-density, size, condition, design, and material.

persian carpetsfrancesco de marco, Shutterstock

Comic Books

Price Range: up to millions

Like anything, there are rarer comic books than others—and these are the ones that could bring home the big bucks. Rare comic books have sold for millions in the past. However, even regular vintage comic books can go for hundreds.

Comic Books of the 1950s and 60sRoad Travel America, Flickr

First Edition Books

Price Range: $15,000 or more

Take a look at those old, dusty spines. If your eye catches the title of a highly sought-after book, make sure to check the edition. If it's a first edition, you could potentially sell it for thousands.

First Edition BooksUBC Library Communications and Marketing, Flickr

Lionel Train Sets

Price Range: up to $500

In 1900, Joshua Lionel Cowen started Lionel Manufacturing Co. Following WWII, they company produced a series of "O27" gauge train sets, starting at $19.95. These days, they're worth a lot more.

Lionel Train SetsJoe Haupt, Flickr

Jadeite Ball Jug

Price Range: up to $400

Jadeite pieces are so gorgeous, but there's a particular jug that's pricier than all the rest. In the 1940s, Anchor Hocking put out a limited number of these jadeite ball jugs. In fact, they're so precious, even cracked jugs can sell for $150.

jadeite jugsjulie, Flickr

Royal Typewriters

Price Range: $375

In 1926, Royal Typewriter came out with a portable version that blew the competition out of the water. The Quiet De Luxe model had quieter keys—and was the go-to typewriter of the time. However, the important part to note is the color.

Royal TypewriterJuhan Sonin, Flickr

Look For The Fun Colors

Unfortunately, if you have a black Royal Tyepwriter, it won't be worth much. However, rarer colors like turquoise or pink can sell for a decent price.

Royal Typewriter turquoiseMolly Sauter, Flickr

Advertising Signs

Price Range: up to $15,000

Many folks use vintage advertisements as decorations for their home. However, certain advertising signs can potentially sell for thousands. Look out for anything to do with gasoline or soft drinks, especially a sign advertising Coca-Cola.

vintage advertisements signsUnknown Author, PxHere

Boy Scout Collectibles

Price Range: up to $2,200

Do you have any old Boy Scout memorabilia lying around? Maybe from your youth, or your father's childhood?
Well, they might be worth something. Online, many people are looking for Boy Scout badges, uniforms, and equipment. A Boy Scout handbook even went for $2,200.

Boy Scout merit badgesDouglas Muth, Flickr

Perfume Bottles

Price Range: up to $1,000

Vintage perfume bottles are tiny works of art, certainly a far cry from the mass-produced perfume products we see today. In the 19th century, glassblowers crafted the most intricate bottles with creative flair.

Perfume Bottleswabisabi2015, Flickr

Look For The Company

Do you have any old perfume bottles produced by the Boston & Sandwich Glass Company or the New England Glass Company? If so, you should consider getting them appraised.

Perfume BottlesStrawbryb, Flickr

Lamps

Price Range: up to $45,000

Perhaps that dated lamp you received with your inheritance is an eyesore. But though it may not mesh with your modern decor, you could potentially sell it.

Collectors are always on the lookout for lamps made by Pairpoint, Tiffany, Handel, and Fulper, to name a few.

Tiffany lampBecky Wetherington, Flickr

Silver Flatware

Price Range: up to $1,100 a piece

Do you still have your grandparents' ancient dinnerware? It might be time to take a look at them. Sterling silver flatware is certainly no joke. Depending on the brand, you could be looking at a very expensive set—especially if it was produced by a company like Tiffany.

Sterling silver flatwareGrannies Kitchen, Flickr

Postcards

Price Range: up to $340

Once again, a postcard might be worth something if it is very old or very rare—and in excellent condition to boot. The majority of postcards might be worthless, but keep in mind that in 2002, a postcard from the year 1840 was auctioned off for $50,000.

written postcardsValentina Perfilyeva, Shutterstock

VHS Tapes

Price Range: up to $50,000

Oh the good ol' days of watching VHS tapes. Many of us still have our original collection stashed somewhere. Revisit that collection because certain tapes are worth more than others.

VHS TapesIain Campbell, Flickr

Look For The Controversial Ones

Keep an eye out for movies that were less popular—ones that were never reproduced in DVD format. The horror films are a good place to start. As well, any controversial or banned films can fetch a good price.

VHS TapesB, Flickr


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