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Take Up a Collection

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POTTERY & CHINA

WHAT'S HOT? Artist-decorated china painting; English ceramics; pottery.

MICHELE BEINY, INC.
53 East 82nd Street;
212-794-9357;
antiqueporcelainco.com
Beiny specializes in eighteenth- and early–nineteenth-century Continental pottery. On sale now: a Sèvres vase with topographical scenes ($140,000) given by Napoleon to Talleyrand in 1813.

JILL FENICHELL, INC.
305 East 61st Street;
212-980-9346
Fenichell specializes in European porcelain— Derby, K.P.M. Berlin, Darte Frères— from 1760 to 1930. Cups and mugs start around $100; an 1835 dessert service is about $35,000.

LEONARD FOX LTD.
790 Madison Avenue, at 67th Street;
212-879-7077
foxrarebooks.com
Fox offers top-of-the-line Art Deco and Art Nouveau French ceramics back to 1885. A small white Sèvres bowl is $1,500; a Serre piece may top $25,000.

LEO KAPLAN LTD.
114 East 57th Street;
212-249-6766;
leokaplan.com
In business since 1969, Kaplan specializes in eighteenth-century English pottery for high-end collectors.


Can't Buy Me Love? The Fab Four make their U.S. stereo debut (value: $7,000).  

RECORDS

WHAT'S HOT? Twelve-inch singles (for D.J.'s); punk-er a New York bands.

MOONCURSER RECORDS
229 City Island Avenue, the Bronx;
718-885-0302
The 82-year-old owner, Roger Roberge, still spends three or four nights a week at clubs, trying to find good music. He specializes in "real records," he says— 45s, 78s, and LPs, from the 1890s to the sixties (lots for under $20).

BLEECKER BOB'S GOLDEN OLDIES RECORD SHOP
118 West 3rd Street;
212-475-9677
Famed for its jumble of wall-to-wall rare records ($25 to $200)—"a dirty, confusing mess of vinyl," says staff member Mark Straigon. Everything from original Gene Vincent to eighties New Wave. Bowie shops here.

SILVER

WHAT'S HOT? Antique sterling jewelry; engine-turned pieces; candlesticks; Fabergé.

A LA VIEILLE RUSSIE
781 Fifth Avenue, at 59th Street;
212-752-1727;
alvr.com
This pristine 1851 business deals in antique, principally Russian, silver from the czarist era. Carl Fabergé pieces, like a two-foot-tall, ornately embellished silver kovsh (like a big punchbowl), run in the $400,000 range. But beginning collectors shouldn't balk: A La Vieille Russie also offers pieces for a few hundred dollars.

S.J. SHRUBSOLE
104 East 57th Street;
212-753-8920;
shrubsole.com
Shrubsole's specialty is Georgian English, and early-American silver. Beginning collectors might pick up a Georgian vinaigrette for $300; the world's top collectors might covet a pristine-condition, elaborately engraved Elizabethan cup and cover ($650,000).

JAMES II GALLERIES
11 East 57th Street;
212-355-7040;
james2.com
Victorian and Edwardian silver, plus porcelain, glass, and other decorative arts.


Old Hollywood: An Eisenberg pin, circa 1940 (about $800).  

SPORTS MEMORABILIA

WHAT'S HOT? Autographed items from contemporary superstars: Barry Bonds, Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods.

IT'S ANOTHER HIT
131 West 33rd Street;
212-564-4111;
itsanotherhit.com
Specializes in vintage sports cards from the fifties on, with a zillion in stock. Collectors can also find rare memorabilia like a game-used Roberto Clemente bat, circa 1970 ($10,000).

EXECUTIVE SPORTS FAN
75 Maiden Lane;
212-405-1870;
executivesportsfan.com
This outfit caters to sports fanatics at all levels. Rare items found here have included a Wayne Gretzky game-used jersey ($30,000) and a $700 Mickey Mantle–signed baseball.

GOTTA HAVE IT! COLLECTIBLES
153 East 57th Street;
800-950-1202;
gottahaveit.com
DiMaggio's bat, Mantle's jersey, and lots more. Sports stuff abounds here, but the stock also includes plenty of performing-arts memorabilia (a Beatles album signed by all four guys costs $75,000); a Subway Series ball signed by Derek Jeter and Mike Piazza is $475.

STAMPS

WHAT'S HOT? Material from former British colonies (Jamaica, Bermuda); Asian stuff.

FRASERS
P.O. Box 608, FDR Station,
New York, N.Y. 10022;
212-754-2445
Owner Colin Fraser once ran Christie's stamp department and specializes in proofs and essays (ten proofs of Queen Victoria run $20,000). Two hundred dollars will let you assemble a starter collection in most areas.

STAMPAZINE
119 West 57th Street;
212-262-0100
The most famous stamp of all time might be the inverted Flying Jenny, of which one sheet was printed in 1918. Stampazine— which carries everything from under-$1 items to blockbusters— has sold 8 of the 100 examples, for as much as $140,000.


Key Development: An early portable typewriter, circa 1906 (about $150).  

VINTAGE CLOTHING

WHAT'S HOT? Mod stuff: Pucci, Courrèges, Cardin, polyester dresses, Lucite purses.

RESURRECTION
217 Mott Street;
212-625-1374
Julia Roberts collects "Nudies" here, and Catherine Deneuve's Pucci castoffs can be found at this vintage-clothing mecca. It's finely edited and priced mostly for serious collectors, but you might find a great disco dress for $75.

THE FAMILY JEWELS
130 West 23rd Street;
212-633-6020;
familyjewelsnyc.com
Owner Lillyan Peditto shops with a collector's eye, offering Pucci to Gucci, Victoriana to Von Furstenberg, and supplying frocks to Sex and the City and Annie Leibovitz. Debbie Harry just bought a shaggy purple coat; Whoopi Goldberg, a hand-painted Mexican skirt.

WATCHES

WHAT'S HOT? Rolex Daytonas.

TOURNEAU
12 East 57th Street, and two other locations;
212-758-7300,
tourneau.com
The standard. Great source for Rolex (vintage and new) and classic Hamiltons, Walthams, Bulovas, and many more. Prices start in the few-hundred-dollar range and go into six figures.

CENTRAL WATCH BAND STAND
45th Street Passage, Grand Central Terminal;
212-685-1689;
centralwatch.com
Many inexpensive alternatives here— you can do quite well for $200 to $500, and vintage purchases are guaranteed for a year. Strong selection of pocket watches.

Additional reporting by Deborah Shapiro.


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