Readers frequently write to ask, “Can I sell this?” And our article on the Top 14 searches last week brought a lot of discussion in the comments section about what is selling right now. Remember that styles and tastes change.  What is selling today isn’t necessarily what will be selling tomorrow.  You hear about the success stories, but sometimes we must face the reality of what we are trying to sell.  Here are the top 5 inquiries we get from our readers that, unfortunately, aren’t selling now. 

  1. Complete dinner sets. Older patterns are out right now, but modern patterns and plain dishes are good because buyers can mix and match.
  2. Upholstered furniture. If it isn’t in mint condition, forget it. It costs too much to reupholster and buyers know this.
  3. Limited edition plates. Too many were made and saved.
  4. Anything made with ivory or an endangered species. There are local, national and international rules forbidding the sale of most ivory and endangered species.  This would include your piano keys as well as clothing accessories like ivory or tortoiseshell buttons.
  5. Small figurines. Once kept in glass cabinets, now most, like Precious Moments and newer Hummels, don’t sell for much. But the rare Hummels still sell.  We will be writing about a great Hummel sale in our April Kovels On Antiques & Collectibles newsletter.
hummel apple tree boy figurine

Hummels come in a lot of sizes, and this large Hummel Apple Tree Boy, 32 in. h., sold in 2018 for $3,360. Photo: Weiss Auctions



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