WHAT’S HOT? Sixties glassware; items from nightspots like the Stork Club; Czech crystal.
AUTHENTIQUES PAST & PRESENT
255 West 18th Street;
Great for mid-century kitsch: cocktail shakers with printed recipes, goofy swizzles, shot glasses with quirky logos ($10 to $150).
181 Prince Street;
Specializing in cocktail shakers and barware, but also Fiestaware, Russel Wright, and kitschy salt-and-pepper shakers. Lots of pieces from $50 to $300.
184 Ninth Avenue, near 21st Street;
Marion Nelson sells British and American barware from the thirties, like ashtrays, whiskey jugs, and figural Beefeater pitchers (typically $20 to $300).
WHAT’S HOT? Contemporary signed first editions; Tolkien; U.S. history; presidential autographs.
ARGOSY BOOK STORE
116 East 59th Street;
Argosy has a little of everything— incunabula, posters, autographs, prints, and modern first editions— and the price range is nearly as diverse (from $10 into multiple thousands).
BAUMAN RARE BOOKS
535 Madison Avenue, near 54th Street,
and in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel;
One-of-a-kind tomes that “changed the world and changed thought,” Natalie Bauman says. A first edition of Darwin’s Origin of Species is $88,000; Atlas Shrugged is $1,800; signed modern firsts are $200 and up.
70 East 55th Street, 6th floor;
Rare books in nearly every subject and antique maps predating 1800 here. A 1796 edition of Lavoisier’s chemistry textbook is $550.
URSUS BOOKS & PRINTS
981 Madison Avenue, near 76th Street;
and 132 West 21st Street;
Peter Kraus has five centuries’ worth of rare books (fifteenth-century Bibles can run $25,000; recent art books start in the low hundreds).
WHAT’S HOT? Prewar cameras with uncoated lenses.
LENS AND REPRO
33 West 17th Street;
A dealer attracting collectors “who want to touch it, kiss it, and have it on their mantelpiece,” says co-owner Jeff Kay. A 1920 200-mm. Goerz Hypergon sold for around $10,000; a screw-mount Leica or a Rolleiflex is $600.
1265 Broadway, at 32nd Street;
Eighty-year-old Olden specializes in high-end collectible cameras like Leica, Alpa, and Zeiss. A circa-1970 Leica M4M mint-condition camera, still in the box, runs $4,000.
WHAT’S HOT? Sixties Mercedes five-passenger convertibles; late-sixties muscle cars.
137 Perry Street;
Owner Elliot Cuker calls his cars “rolling sculptures.” The priciest on the floor is an immaculate 1957 gull-wing Mercedes 300SL ($275,000). Twenty grand will get you a ‘64 Mustang convertible.
BIMMERS & BENZ OF NORTH AMERICA
201–04 Northern Boulevard;
Bimmers-Benz deals exclusively in European classics at all levels. A 1988 Lamborghini Countach is at $75,000; a 1989 Porsche 959 sold two years ago for $180,000.
WHAT’S HOT? Late-1800s carriage clocks; French clocks from the Industrial Revolution era.
FANELLI ANTIQUE TIMEPIECES, LTD.
790 Madison Avenue, near 66th Street;
Known for investment-quality clocks; Sotheby’s and Tiffany send folks here for repairs and advice. An American Chelsea ship’s clock from the forties is $750; a 1760 grandfather clock is $25,000.
THE TIME GALLERY
1050 Second Avenue,
at 55th Street;
Eighteenth-century clocks— French lyre clocks, cartel clocks, English musical bracket clocks— are this shop’s specialty ($5,000 and up).
WHAT’S HOT? U.S. $20 gold pieces; pre–Civil War American coinage.
STACK’S COIN CO.
123 West 57th Street;
The largest dealer in the U.S. The rarest coin to cross this threshold— a 1933 American $20 gold piece, never released by the Mint— just sold for $7.5 million through Sotheby’s.
60 West 44th Street;
American coins at all price points: A $20 gold piece from the 1850s recently went for $75,000, but there’s plenty here for under $100.
WHAT’S HOT? The Incredible Hulk; Spider-Man.
10 East 23rd Street;
Cosmic Comics specializes in vintage and modern books, from a couple of bucks on up. Avon Westerns and Phantom Lady books sell for $5,000 to $10,000 each.
873 Broadway, near 19th Street;
Owner Vincent Zurzolo specializes in golden age (1938–1955) and silver age (1956–1969) comic books and has more than 100,000 in stock. Movie posters and other memorabilia, too.
WHAT’S HOT? French paiste pieces; Eisenberg.
37 East 12th Street;
Faux-bauble lovers know Kentshire for items by the grande dame of designers, Miriam Haskell, the rarest being a suite owned by Joan Crawford ($5,850); typical pieces run $300 to $3,000.
LORRAINE WOHL COLLECTION
860 Lexington Avenue, near 64th Street;
Wohl also specializes in Haskell pieces. In stock now: a thirties necklace ($4,500) that’s a duplicate of the one Coco Chanel received from the Grand Duke Dmitri (her lover). Plenty here for under $1,000.
WHAT’S HOT? Fifties fashion dolls (like Ideal’s Miss Revlon and Madame Alexander’s Cissy).
FOURTY FIFTY SIXTY
63 East 7th Street;
Ben Cassara and Joe Bucchi restore and sell dolls from the twenties to the eighties in their candy-colored East Village shop, specializing in vintage Barbie (from her first appearance in 1959). Prices typically run $125 to $1,700; the first Barbie goes for about $7,500.
THE NEW YORK DOLL HOSPITAL
787 Lexington Avenue, near 61st Street;
Irving Chais, owner of this business launched in 1900, appraises, sells, and repairs antique and new dolls. Prices start in the middle two figures; coveted eighteenth-century Queen Anne dolls have drawn up to $20,000, but that market has cooled off a bit.
WHAT’S HOT? Mont Blanc limited editions; swirly twenties and thirties plastic pens.
FOUNTAIN PEN HOSPITAL
10 Warren Street;
Here, floor-to-ceiling cases are filled with vintage pens for all budgets. A nice Parker from the thirties is $150; a super-rare Waterman with silver overlay runs $35,000. Repairs are a specialty.
928 Broadway, near 21st Street;
Patti Smith and Frank Rich have shopped here, as do hard-core Mont Blanc and Waterman collectors. A Waterman 420 with silver-filigree overlay just sold for $22,000; at the low end, a Parker 51 is $100.
WHAT’S HOT? Tiffany “paperweight glass” vases.
220 East 57th Street;
World-renowned for Tiffany lamps, glass, and pottery. (Managing director Arlie Sulka appraises Tiffany glass on Antiques Roadshow.) Beginning collectors can pick up a $350 mini vase; the seasoned collector might like the Wisteria lamp, first introduced in 1902, or a three-paneled glass screen made for a 1900 exhibition in Paris (she won’t quote a price, but if you have to ask …).
754 Fifth Avenue, at 57th Street;
Bergdorf’s hotel silver department carries an ever-changing selection of English and Italian vintage silver-plate, from champagne buckets to oversize trays from places like London’s Connaught Hotel. Featured right now: English cocktail shakers ($365– $1,250).
HOWARD KAPLAN ANTIQUES
827 Broadway, near 13th Street;
Kaplan carries select pieces of nineteenth-century French copperware in mint condition, from fish- and turtle-shaped molds to giant stewpots. In stock now is a big brass-handled triangular turbot cooker ($3,200).
WHAT’S HOT? Early world maps (pre-1700); hometown maps and prints.
RICHARD B. ARKWAY
59 East 54th Street;
Map mavens looking for top-condition, rare maps, atlases, globes, and books on exploration and geography adore Arkway. Hundreds of maps are in stock at any given time; lately the first view of New York City ever published (1651) by Joost Hartgers is here, for $35,000.
48 East 57th Street
THE OLD PRINT SHOP
150 Lexington Avenue, near 29th Street;
Launched in 1898, The Old Print Shop specializes in paper from the seventeenth through nineteenth centuries. Maps range from $50 for a 100-year-old foreign map to an extremely rare 1743 map of Boston ($185,000).
WHAT’S HOT? Revolutionary and Civil War material; anything from the Gangs of New York era; action figures.
MARTIN LANE HISTORICAL AMERICANA
205 West Houston Street;
Lane specializes in antique Colt firearms ($1,000–$50,000), but collectors can find almost anything military here, at all price levels. A few years back, Lane sold an 1875 Remington that belonged to Jesse James for $400,000.
Army & Navy
319 West 42nd Street;
For armed-forces fanatics of all budgets. Rare items run from World War II pilots’ survival maps printed on rayon ($50) to a Navy balloon-pilot’s leather coat ($1,500).
WHAT’S HOT? It varies— “people look for the town they were raised in,” says one dealer.
Cheshire, Conn., 06410;
Shop in person or by mail, or catch this dealer at the bi-annual postcard shows at the New Yorker Hotel. Broad inventory includes thousands of pre-1940 cards, photo postcards, topical and foreign cards of African, Asian, and Latin American scenes ($5 to $25).
OLD BOOD SHOP
4 John Street,
Stock includes 20,000 prewar postcards, from state views (the most popular) to advertising to plenty of New York City. Prices run from 25 cents to $175, the latter for a set of twelve painted portraits of forties RCA stars (Spike Jones, Duke Ellington).
WHAT’S HOT? Toulouse-Lautrec, A. M. Cassandre, and Leonetto Cappiello and splashy Deco.
INTERNATIONAL POSTER CENTER
601 West 26th Street;
Toulouse-Lautrecs are the specialty here, and an extensive library contains 50,000 works ($3,500 is the average auction price, but comparatively recent works can go as low as $50). Owner Jack Rennert also runs the world’s largest poster auction.
55 West 17th Street;
Specializes in ad posters from the mid-1880s through the sixties, especially those of A. M. Cassandre, whose works can top $50,000. But there’s plenty for less— a handsome London Underground poster is $300.
WHAT’S HOT? Artist-decorated china painting; English ceramics; pottery.
MICHELE BEINY, INC.
53 East 82nd Street;
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;
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;
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;
In business since 1969, Kaplan specializes in eighteenth-century English pottery for high-end collectors.
WHAT’S HOT? Twelve-inch singles (for D.J.’s); punk-er a New York bands.
229 City Island Avenue, the Bronx;
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;
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.
WHAT’S HOT? Antique sterling jewelry; engine-turned pieces; candlesticks; Fabergé.
A LA VIEILLE RUSSIE
781 Fifth Avenue, at 59th Street;
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.
104 East 57th Street;
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;
Victorian and Edwardian silver, plus porcelain, glass, and other decorative arts.
WHAT’S HOT? Autographed items from contemporary superstars: Barry Bonds, Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods.
IT’S ANOTHER HIT
131 West 33rd Street;
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;
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;
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.
WHAT’S HOT? Material from former British colonies (Jamaica, Bermuda); Asian stuff.
P.O. Box 608, FDR Station,
New York, N.Y. 10022;
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.
119 West 57th Street;
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.
WHAT’S HOT? Mod stuff: Pucci, Courrèges, Cardin, polyester dresses, Lucite purses.
217 Mott Street;
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;
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.
WHAT’S HOT? Rolex Daytonas.
12 East 57th Street, and two other locations;
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;
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.