Before you even consider listing your beloved Troika piece on ebay, would be sellers should be aware what is going on, on the market today, should be aware of the pitfalls of selling Troika, and I would even say go far enough to verify your piece by an antiques expert, before you hit the "list your item" button, as currently fakes are flooding the market, and this has fueld buyer paranoia, understandidly. You may not be aware your selling a fake, and believe me, however innocent you may be, buyers will show no mercy.
So I shall explain why, and what precautions you should take, and the wacky "tests" that pieces today are subjected too.
Firstly when Troika closed in 1983 there were a huge ammount of spoils to be had, including hundreds of white, un-glazed, un-painted pieces, as well as the moulds to make them. When the Troika market exploded some years ago, some folks thought they would make a killing on buying these white pieces, painting them themselves, and selling them on. Hence this is why the market is in such a mess these days, and lurking in the corner of your treasured collection are FAKES! Some, however are blatently obvious, but unfortunatly some are not...even if you list your piece believing it to be genuine, and in good faith, buyers will subject your piece to a bizzare range of tests, including washing in a bowl of hot fairy liquid, checking for chips and cracks with a powerfull magnifiying glass, and even LICKING the pottery glaze!
I am not kidding...heck I wish I was!
As one dealer told me he licks his newly aquired pieces, and if his tongue sticks to the glaze its fake!
So what should sellers be doing to protect themselves from unwittingly selling a fake? Here is a list!
1: Get your peice verified by an antiques professional (ask him/her to give you a valuation as well, and make this your reserve price)
2: Check your piece with a magnifying glass for chips cracks and repairs. (some repairs are so good they can be unspotable unless your an expert.)
3: Close your eyes and feel the piece all over for any imperfections
4: Genuine Troika has a smooth white glaze to the inside, does yours have this?
5: Take the same precautions that the buyers take! Lick the glaze! if your tongue sticks its fake.
6: Take detailed photos of the signature. Add these to your listing and say please check the signature for yourself (apparently even some so called experts can't spot a fake signature from a photo, unfortunatly)
7: DO NOT list your piece as "mint condition" unless you are 110% sure it is! Buyers will expect production line quality, dispite the fact the pottery is over 40 years old!
8: Do some research on fakes! Normally a little research into spotting fakes helps avoid unwittingly selling one! (there are some excellent "how to spot fake Troika" guides on here!)
9: If you find chips cracks or repairs, take a close up detailed photo, and detailed explanation in your listing.
10: If your in any doubt what so ever DO NOT list your Troika! Its really not worth the hassle, and with the market the way it is at the moment, currently pristine, lovely genuine pieces are going for half the price they were a few years ago.
I hope this guide has been usefull, and good luck!
Troika sellers BEWARE!
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7 April 2013
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