There are plenty of good answers to the question "Why Buy Antiques?" but no matter how much you love these wonderful pieces of the past that we can bring into our homes, there is always more to learn. Maybe that, in and of itself, is yet another reason to enjoy them — the path from novice to know-it-all is long and interesting. Here are some of our favorite sources for learning more:
1. Judith Miller. The ultimate antique furniture expert, Miller has written numerous books and has her own website, which is crammed with useful information. Her mammoth book "Furniture: World Styles from Classical to Contemporary" is an invaluable and instructive resource packed with sumptuous photographs. It also makes for a very attractive coffee table book.
2. Darryl Carter's book The New Traditional. Carter, a Washington DC-based interior designer, is known for his inspired blending of the very old and the very new.
3. The Buzz on Antiques blog. Antiquarian Buzz Kaplan's website is a treasure trove of information and insight on all things antique. He is also a very funny writer.
4.BBC Homes and Antiques. From the network responsible for the original Antiques Roadshow, this website (and magazine) is full of photo galleries, glossaries, tips and other resources.
5. Ruby Lane is sort of like eBay for antiques, collectables and vintage. Ruby Lane pools together a huge number of mom-and-pop antique shops and dealers around the world and sells everything from vintage buttons to $40,000 Art Nouveau clocks.
6. 1st Dibs is where the most high-profile and high-end antique dealers sell their wares. The site is pure inspiration and sometimes just pure torture ($95,000 for a pair of Regency bergeres? Hmm..Let me check my purse). Even if you can't afford to make a purchase, it is worth browsing if only to lay your eyes on some of the most impossibly beautiful and striking pieces of furniture on earth. I have actually found some affordable furniture there, too. And 1st Dibs provides links to the shops of participating sellers, so you can click through for further hunting.
7. Vintage and Modern. Another terrific source for antique and vintage wares, with a sometimes more forgiving price range than 1st Dibs.
Image: The New Traditional