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Careers in Antiques

Aug 17, 2007
Pursuing a career in the exotic world of antiques can be a highly enriching and satisfying experience. To many people, dealing in antiques is an experience akin to nirvana. If you are considering pursuing a career in antique dealing, there are many different types of people you will come across and they will all have different roles to play.

Dealing in Antiques

Dealing in antiques is very simple in some ways, but on the other hand, it can be very tough. To become an antiques dealer you are required to have good knowledge in this field, in order to deal profitably. Before buying a particular item ask yourself whether it is authentic, is it too expensive, was it restored, will you be able to resell it at a profit? Working for an experienced dealer who can guide and instruct you properly is the only way to learn more.

However, jobs with antiques dealers are few if not extinct. Many dealers are struggling to sustain their practice and can hardly afford to take on a trainee. These days, dealers prefer to trade at antiques fairs and centers rather than to start their own shops. This helps reduce their overall expenses. Sometimes dealers who have shops advertise for an assistant in the Antiques Trade Gazette. But, they generally require people with relevant experience.

Other Related Careers

If you are clueless about antiquing, then here is the general idea about the professions related to this field:

-Collectors: professional collectors have vast knowledge about antiques and collectibles, but can be a very choosy lot to deal with. Most collectors look out for particular items in a certain condition. Collectors generally work within a budget. Most serious collectors do not run shops, as they prefer to keep these antique items for their own personal pleasure.
-Traders: traders do not have their own shops but prefer to trade at antiques fairs and markets that are open year round. In addition, some traders sell their items at flea markets. However, when you are dealing with these traders, ensure that you make a paper trail on the item to protect your customers as well as yourself.
-Exhibitors: those people who own shops that are open for a specific amount of hours are known as exhibitors. Sometimes they hold exhibitions for a short period of time. Exhibitions are generally held at large venues. These exhibitions generally display items that are rich in quality. Due to this reason, exhibitions are not held regularly because it takes time for these exhibitors to find suitable antiques.
-Runners: those people who purchase antiques on behalf of their dealers are known as runners. The name was given to them because that is precisely what they do; they are constantly on the run looking out for great pieces. The dealer gives the runner a fixed price and it is his job to get that particular item within his budget.
If you wish to pursue a career in antiques, you could consider taking up any of these professions or you could be dealing with any of these people. Most people start off by becoming a runner and then they move on to becoming an exhibitor or a market trader. This career can be both lucrative and exciting.
About the Author
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solution's Six Sigma Online offers online six sigma training and certification classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.
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