News-Antique.com - May 05,2008 - Five hundred and two. That’s how many paperweights my late parents collected. It’s a bit mind-boggling. I wonder – why not five hundred and three? Five hundred and thirty-three? Six hundred? But then, they were also busy collecting other things – plates, cameras, antique farm implements, you name it.
Luckily for me, they kept track. And if you haven’t begun some kind of systematic tracking system for your own collection, you’re missing out on one of the pleasures of collecting. My father began tracking his collections in a notebook. He printed out forms, three to a page, that allowed him to number the item, describe it, put in its dimensions, the date when he bought it, what it cost him, who made it, whether it was signed, whether there was an original box or price sticker, anything he might want to remember about the item.
When the first notebook overflowed to a second, and a third, we introduced him to a little innovation called Excel Spreadsheet. Well, Dad was in hog heaven then. He realized he could enter all his information, and then sort and resort by different kinds of data. Did he want to know how many paperweights he had that were made by Steve Lundberg? Just hit a couple of keystrokes and Ta DA!!! Did he want to sort by purchase date? Value? Did he want to add a new column and keep track of exactly WHERE the item was kept? It was all available to him in an easy manner.
No matter how large or small your collection is, keeping track of this kind of information is invaluable and FUN. Just think of how you can astound and amaze your fellow collectors with the data you’ll mine. I knew my parents had a lot of paperweights, but by golly, it’s fun to be able to tell people there were five hundred and two. Especially the “and two”.