Sandy Erdman: What was hot in 2018 could stay hot this year

January 6, 2019
Cast iron pans get hot — literally. These were found with Chris Rand Kujath at the Old River Valley Antique Mall.

What is hot in this part of the country may not be so in other parts of the country, but does it really matter what was hot in 2018 and what will be hot in 2019? Not really. Some buy seasonal items, some seek to fill collections, some are after things they love, or what they can afford. Some hone in on what magazines show are hot items, or what friends have or shops say are their hot items.

I do a “hot” list every year, and this year’s list, though it has some new items, repeats some from last year.

Angie Pehler, Angie’s Vintage Rust, Treasures Under Sugar Loaf, Winona

“2018 was a very good year with hot items that included almost any beer related item. Man caves, basement and garage bars continue to keep interest high for these items and I feel that will continue into 2019. In addition, vintage metal toys from the ’50s and ’60s have been hot, along with toy tractors, military items and advertising ephemera, especially from the local area. Red Wing pottery and crocks, along with vintage furniture, older cabinets and bookcases, older license plates and Annalee dolls. Vintage pictures, tin lunch boxes, advertising tins, jackknives and belt buckles have also been good sellers, and I think interest on those items will continue.”

Shayna Dais, Rusty Bucket, Winona

“Small repainted furniture with pricing under $30 seem to be good sellers. My sister Lisa’s dish towels are always good sellers. We always have some quilts in our shop and they are good sellers, as we keep the prices affordable. We try to find patterns and colors to fit the time of year we’re selling them in. Carole’s exfoliating cloths have been very popular!”

Neil Hunt, A-Z Collectibles, Winona

“Very hard to say. Kitchen is always good for me, things that can hang on the wall and yet still be used when needed. Cast iron skillets are good also. Toys, vintage if I can find them, but also I sell die-cast from the ’90s and early 2000s. I would not say the die-cast are hot, but the older toys are. Fifteen percent of my business is used books, mostly nonfiction, military history, old children’s books and classics. Not a prophet, but I look for the toys to stay hot.”

Joan Thilges, New Generations of Harmony

“Probably the strongest look all year was anything “farmhouse.” For us, “farmhouse” means rustic antiques, vintage items, and even a few reproductions to create a warm, relaxed feeling in your home, porch or patio and in your “man cave” or “she-shed.” A number of our vendors create displays in their areas showing you how to incorporate repurposed furniture from Grandma or junk from the old barn. All ages find something to love about the look!”

Carol Christopherson, Oslo Antiques & Collectibles, Kasson

“I would say signs — old, new and handmade. We have also sold several pieces of furniture. For the future I see younger people buying real wood furniture, whether it be antique, vintage or handmade. The “farmhouse” style is helping with that. Customers are looking for something that will last more than a few years and has a story behind it.”

Laurie Rucker, Vintage Treasures & Home Decor, St. Charles

“My best sellers this past year were anything with advertising, cast iron, white chippy architectural pieces, bistro sets, metal signs and gnomes of all sorts and sizes! For the coming year, I see the same trend, especially old advertising signs.”

Sarah Kieffer, Sarah’s Uniques & Jim’s “Man”tiques, St. Charles

“2018 was the year for gas porcelain signs, gas pumps and gas station memorabilia, since we sold a lot of these items. As this year comes to a close, it seems the new trend for 2019 is still advertising, but on a much larger scale. Pop, feed and gas signs are still very popular, however the advertising seems to have expanded to many different areas. People are very interested in general store items, such as old pop coolers, old calendars and utensils with advertising on them. Everything from antique syrup fountains, tins with advertising such as for soaps, coffee, woolens and more. Seed counters, general store cabinets, chairs from old stores.”

Chris Rand Kujath, Old River Valley Antique Mall, Stewartville

“Signs have been a hot seller for us this year, including tin, porcelain, neon and cardboard. The best sellers were Hamm’s beer signs. Cast iron has been another hot item! We sold a lot for people to use at home, camping and for decorating. The most desirable cast iron is “Griswold.” Fishing- and hunting-related items, as we usually have a large selection of fishing lures, knives, axes, minnow buckets, ammunition crates. Stoneware has made a big comeback for us, selling a lot of jugs, crocks, art pottery and stoneware items with advertising. Red Wing is probably the best for us, especially in crocks. 2019 about the same!”

Want to find out what else is hot? Check out Antique Trader’s “Antiques & Collectibles 2019 Price Guide,” by Eric Bradley, published by Krause Publications.

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