How to Start Your Collection: 6 Crucial Tips for the Newcomer


  1. Know your range, remember your goal.

Concentrating on your particular interest is fundamental. The vast array of different genres can be overwhelming. The first Golden Rule is to stick to what you want and likes to collect.

When you just about to start your first collection it is very easy to get overwhelmed with the variety of choices. At this stage it is vital to build a core of your collection.

To avoid a common mistake of acquiring unnecessary items that will make your collection look more like a pile of old stuff, define your topic, build a story that will unite all the pieces into a univocal collection. When the time passes you might want to grow and broaden your boundaries - Extend accordingly.

To succeed it is crucial to do your research – read the next paragraph.    

  1. Do the research and become an expert in your field.

Knowing your subject will help you to build an impressive collection and to distinguish between a rare find to a fake.

A toy is valuable because of a combination of different features, like age, rarity, condition, or usefulness. Each type of toy has its own, known and distinguished only by a specialist. Become an expert in your field – The more theoretical and practical knowledge you get, the better you will become.

There is an abundant supply of printed and online literature and information on the subject. Research for yourself. See and follow the price movements, historically they have always been upwards, to gauge market values.   

  1. Sign up for the auction houses, follow the news about sales.

Knowing where to find authentic pieces for fair prices is vital to building your collection.  The most popular places are general and specific actions, fairs, galleries.

By searching online for auction houses that specialize in, or hold regular toy sales, you will build up a database of what is on offer and how the market is performing. Try auction platforms such as Liveauctioneers, Invaluable and the-saleroom.

  1. Publish your collection.

So, you became an antique toy collector. It does not matter what kind of toys you collect, Marklin trains or Lehmann automatons, Dinky Toys or Matchbox, vintage dolls or steam machines – don’t keep your wonders to yourself only. Share your amazing collection with the world with the use of modern technologies, like blogs, forums, Facebook, Instagram or build your personal website to display your findings.

  1. Enter the fascinating community of the Antique Toy collectors.

The camaraderie with fellow collectors often results in life-long friendships. Ideas and information can be exchanged and knowledge greatly enhanced.

  1. Find your dealer.

Search for dealers with a good reputation who are professionals. Having a dealer who knows your taste and can guess from the first glance whether you are going to love the piece or not will be of much help to build your collection.

Nowadays many deals are done online, and you have to ensure that you know exactly what you are buying beforehand. Therefore finding a trustworthy dealer who may have a physical presence and actually see and check the toys for you – is a huge advantage.

Welcome Newcomer