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I have a collection of late 40s 50s silk Chinese clothing,

Good afternoon, I have...

Good afternoon, I have a collection of late 40s 50s silk Chinese clothing, stored in bag, tailor made in Hong Kong when my parents came to America. How would we go about appraising these items? Thank you in advance. Barbars

Expert's Assistant: I always love having an appraiser look at my stuff. Sometimes its turned out to be surprisingly valuable. Is there anything else important you think the Antiques Appraiser should know?

The items are tailor made guessing about a size 10. Would photos help? what I am attempting to do is sell them as a set and want to have an idea of value.

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Answered in 1 minute by:
10/19/2017
Erin-Marie Wallace
Erin-Marie Wallace, Owner & CEO of Rare-Era.com
Category: Appraisals
Satisfied Customers: 234
Experience: Sothebys Institute, UK Trained Appraiser & Auctioneer
Verified

Greetings, my name is ***** ***** I am a federally certified Fine Art and Antiques appraiser and licensed auctioneer with a Master’s degree from Sotheby’s Institute, UK. I have worked with early 20th century Chinese clothing and textiles and can help you with this. Were these pieces tailored in the Western Style or Eastern style of the time and can you upload a few general photos to this system please?

Looking forward to assisting you,

Erin-Marie

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Both eastern and looks like a could are western, the silk is heavy weight and some looks like satin, but feels like silk. will up load some files
and send

Thank you, I'll keep my eyes peeled for the images.

Sincerely,

Erin-Marie

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Sending photos, not sure they show enough detail, like the mandarin collars,side slits, pleats and tailored forms, but hope this will give you an idea. I included shots of the materials. Amazing material.
DSC03258.JPGDSC03258.JPGDSC03260.JPGDSC03260.JPGDSC03262.JPGDSC03262.JPGDSC03263.JPGDSC03263.JPGDSC03264.JPGDSC03264.JPGDSC03266.JPGDSC03266.JPGDSC03267.JPGDSC03267.JPGDSC03268.JPGDSC03268.JPGDSC03269.JPGDSC03269.JPGDSC03270.JPGDSC03270.JPGDSC03271.JPGDSC03271.JPGDSC03272.JPGDSC03272.JPGDSC03273.JPGDSC03273.JPGDSC03274.JPGDSC03274.JPGDSC03275.JPGDSC03275.JPGDSC03276.JPGDSC03276.JPGDSC03277.JPGDSC03277.JPGDSC03372.JPGDSC03372.JPGDSC03373.JPGDSC03373.JPGDSC03374.JPGDSC03374.JPG

These really are quite fine, I've just had a chance to sit in front of my computer and may not get your request completed this evening but I will have it fully researched for you tomorrow morning if that isn't too much trouble.

Sincerely,

Erin-Marie

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
That would be fabulous, Thank you!

My goodness, these are so beautiful. I'm not surprised at the quality of the silk, as China invented the process it better be fantastic! A close friend of mine who spent her career in fashion, once explained to me that because environmental conditions were different 80+ years ago (fewer pollutants were in the air and ground) the quality of older natural fabrics cannot be matched in most of today's textiles. I also lived in Hong Kong and have first hand knowledge of the excellence of their tailors.

In helping to assign a proper value to your pieces, I chose to first look at sold items from reputable auction houses who utilize competitive online bidding. This is a great way to establish a base value. Most seem to average between $70USD and $115USD like this grouping which broke down to $115.48USD each, and this dress which sold for $68.75USD and this framed example which sold for $60USD.

By the time these examples find their way into galleries I expect to see an increase of 2 to 3 time the auction price paid. Being said, this will fluctuate greatly dependent upon market changes and regional tastes.

You mentioned wanting to sell them, because your pieces are vintage couture rather than straight antique like let us say a 19th century Chinese embroidered robe (this one sold at auction for $7500USD, did they bring one of these?) selling them will require proper marketing and using key words in your descriptions, I'd recommend mentioning the terms Xipao and Cheongsam when appropriate. The other factor in selling couture is condition and size, personally, I think an average of a size 10 is perfect as that is such a prevalent dress size.

If you are planning on selling them yourself, I'd recommend using an online platform that can reach a large audience like EBay, Etsy or Ruby Lane.

I hope this impartial evaluation will be of assistance to you. If you have any additional questions, do let me know. Otherwise, please keep in mind, I only receive compensation for my answer once you have rated me positively, thus, your 5-star rating is most appreciated.

Cheers!

Erin-Marie

Erin-Marie Wallace
Erin-Marie Wallace, Owner & CEO of Rare-Era.com
Category: Appraisals
Satisfied Customers: 234
Experience: Sothebys Institute, UK Trained Appraiser & Auctioneer
Verified
Erin-Marie Wallace and 87 other Appraisals Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Thank you, ***** ***** great information, it gives me a perspective of what could be their value, especially the display that will best show these pieces the best. I am not able to invest the time to sell these my self, however the site you sent me to looks like an ideal forum. I don't have any documentation to indicate when and where the items were made, do you believe this would make a difference?
Customer reply replied 8 months ago
One more question, selling items such as these, something your firm does? Was a pleasure communication with you and if this is a service you or your company offer, would you consider this?Thank you !Barbara
Customer reply replied 8 months ago
or, if not, could you recommend a firm or individual?

Thank you for asking, I am honored that you would consider us. However, my firm specializes in fine and decorative arts, design and jewelry, most Asian arts we market are 19th century and earlier. What is best for your collection is a firm which specializes in textiles and couture. If you let me know the city and state you are living in I'll see if I can recommend someone to you.

It's always nice to include what provenance you know (I recommend just taking a moment to type up the history, nothing extravagant, just a little cherry on to for the new owners which may get you an extra bid or two) but the style and construction of these pieces scream the time-period they were made in and I doubt that anyone with knowledge of textiles would question it.

Most Sincerely,

Erin-Marie

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Thank you, ***** ***** in Seattle area of Washington, please let me know if there is someone or a firm in this area.
thank you again!

Good Morning Barbara,

I hope this finds you well today. I have two / three suggestions for you and while I've not worked directly with these companies, they consistently pop up in my research and have a verifiable track record of selling textiles and couture. Augusta Auctions is in New York, they specialize in textiles and couture and have an international reach. Skinner Auctions is a tad closer to you (though not by much); they sell an array of fine and decorative arts & jewelry but they also have an independent textiles and couture department (not many auction houses do), here is the link to it.

My third choice is a British company, Kerry Taylor Auctions this will likely only work if they have a branch office in the US and I'm not sure if they do but they offer the most amazing array of couture, textiles and accessories that it is worth browsing their site.

I wish you the best of luck and if you have any additional questions about navigating the process, just let me know.

Most Sincerely,

Erin-Marie

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Thank you!
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