I’m delighted and excited to announce that I will be co-presenting a new primetime, evening show for BBC2 in early 2013. The subjects are collecting and collections – both are so close to my heart, they’re probably a rather large part of it, and the blood that it pumps around me! In three one hour shows, Collectaholics focuses on the stories and passions that lie behind Britain’s collectors and collections. Certain objects and themes will then act as springboards for us to look at the fascinating social history or story behind them. I’m lucky enough to be co-presenting it with the utterly wonderful, witty and warm Mel Giedroyc, of Mel & Sue fame, who most recently presented three hit series of The Great British Bake-Off. And we need your help – if you’re a true Collectaholic, we want to hear from you. If you’re worried that the aim is to have a laugh at your expense, or not take you and your collection seriously, I can assure you that this isn’t the case. As a diehard collector with …

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Britain’s next National Antiques Week will highlight and celebrate younger members of the trade who will shape the future of antiques, collectables, vintage and retro. Far from being a stuffy, staid and stodgy industry that’s dying off, the industry is as vibrant as ever and is changing with the times. A vibrant band of young people under 39 are working across all areas – owning shops, taking over established and sometimes reviving weary family firms, working as auctioneers, organising antiques fairs and working hard behind the scenes to promote the trade. Since launching the campaign in late November 2012, we have discovered that there are legions of them! To promote this inspiring and passionate group the organisers of National Antiques Week are delighted to announce the Young Guns of the Antiques Trade Awards. ‘Young Guns’ are 39 years old or under and must be involved in the trade and earn a living wage from it. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a dealer at a fair, auction house specialist, shop owner, fair organiser or exhibitor – you could even be …

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Kevin Graham of the Pottery & Glass Forum has alerted me to the fact that a number of vintage Fat Lava glazes and shapes by Otto Keramik are now being reproduced. So far, the shapes are the UFO vases shown in the image below and the bulls (sometimes called bison) that were originally produced by Ruscha. The shapes are identical in size and detail as Otto Keramik are using the original moulds. As you can see, the glazes are very typical of those used during the 1960s & 70s, so it’s easy to be caught out. A few collectors already have been when buying on eBay. I think it’s important to point out that these pieces are being produced and sold by Otto Keramik as brand new – there’s no intention to deceive from their side. They’re a working pottery who are simply responding to the fashion and demand for retro pottery from the 1960s & 70s. The problems come when unscrupulous, or simply unaware, sellers offer them as vintage pieces to unwitting collectors. …

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