Copper may be known for its rich, warm hue and metallic shine, but did you know many items made from this material are popular collectibles for vintage lovers worldwide? With endless designs made from copper, there are antique copper pieces for everyone—it's just a matter of finding something you like!
From valuable vintage copper pots hanging above the kitchen stove to a curated collection of copper figurines, this metal takes on many forms. Learn more about the fascinating history of copper and discover how to incorporate beautiful copper collectibles into your home.
What is Copper?
Copper is a soft and malleable metal known for its red-orange hue. The naturally forming element can be found worldwide, making it an accessible and beautiful choice for different household goods and art pieces for centuries. Whether you love collecting pure, untarnished antique copper or prefer the aged look of the green-blue patina pieces, there are countless designs waiting to be added to your collection.
Why Do People Collect Antique Copper?
Many copper items can be extremely valuable, and with the right eye and a little research, someone could easily turn a profit collecting and reselling copper collectibles. In fact, some people buy vintage copper with the sole purpose of becoming antique dealers. If you're interested in making a financial investment for the future, setting up an antique copper booth is a wonderful idea.
For those who enjoy decorating with vintage items, copper is a popular choice. People of all ages love to decorate with copper figurines and other collectibles because the metallic orange hue is the perfect accent for any room. The striking shine of antique copper lends itself to many different aesthetics, and whether you’re looking for a statement art piece to feature on your gallery wall or love the timeless look of pans hanging above the stove, there’s always a way to incorporate elegant copper into your home décor.
What Makes Vintage Copper Valuable?
When you take the quality, authenticity, and year produced into consideration, different vintage copper items could be extremely valuable. Between the many kitchenware, artwork, and jewelry designs, there are pieces available at every price point. When you're scouring the aisles at a Florida antique mall event for that perfect copper collectible to take home, know that the price point could vary depending on those factors.
Investing in Vintage Copper Cookware
In modern designs, plenty of pans, canisters, and mugs are made with cheaper, less reliable materials, but copper remains a favorite for two distinct reasons: it’s the best option for controllable cooking and can last you a lifetime. If you're cooking with a copper saucepan, the heat will evenly disperse across the pot’s bottom, as copper is one of the best heat conductors there is. Buying vintage copper kitchenware is also a more sustainable choice, as this long-loved material typically doesn't burn or tarnish, only getting better with age.
Durable and stylish, copper has been a preferred cookware material in kitchens around the globe, from the famous chefs to the everyday household. If you want to become an antique mall vendor or are intrigued by the idea of starting your own collection, investing in kitchen copper collectibles is a great place to start.
Popular Types of Antique Copper Kitchenware
Decorating with Copper Home Décor
Antique copper home décor comes in various sizes, shapes, and styles, and with a timeless look, anyone can incorporate this shining metal into their decorations. Adding small copper accent pieces around your home brings warmth and texture to every room. From discovering the beauty of collectible figurines to hunting down the perfect copper picture frame for your desk, there are many ways to feature copper in your home.
5 Ways to Decorate with Antique Copper Collectibles
1. Place a few copper candlestick holders on your dining room table to give your dinner parties a warm glow.
2. Discover different copper figurines of animals, people, and places and place them along your mantle or on individual showcase shelves around the home.
3. Set a copper vase with fresh flowers on your coffee table to complement a vintage light fixture in the living room.
4. Complete your gallery wall with handmade, hammered copper wall art to add texture to your décor.
5. Set out larger-than-life copper statues in your garden.
Buying Copper Jewelry
Copper jewelry has been around for thousands of years, from the handcrafted jewelry of the Ancient Egyptians to today's more modern laser-cut pieces. In some cultures, wearing these patinaed pieces is thought to reduce pain and boost energy. Whether you're looking for a new style or adding to your existing collection, copper jewelry pieces are some of the most popular at antique mall locations.
Is Copper Jewelry Expensive?
Although they aren't made from precious metals, such as silver or gold, vintage copper earrings, bracelets, and rings can be extremely valuable depending on the age and condition of the piece. Certain artisanal pieces can be pricey, but when finding antique copper jewelry to add to your collection, look for an authentic maker's mark to get an accurate idea of when, where, and by whom the piece was made.
How to Spot Real Vintage Copper
When buying a metallic piece from your local Chicago antique mall or flea market, don't be fooled! Many manufacturers throughout the years have faked the look of vintage copper using brass, alloy mixtures, or paints.
To determine if an item you find is made from copper, you can do one of two things. Copper doesn’t have magnetic properties, so an easy way to test is to place a magnet on the surface—if it sticks, you know it's not authentic. Copper is also known for a low, smooth sound rather than a high-pitched bell-like sound, so if you lightly tap on it, the pitch is a dead giveaway.
Between the lustrous shine of copper jewelry and the timeless look of copper kitchenware, copper will never go out of style. If you've been inspired to fill your home with elegant copper collectibles, you're not alone. With hundreds of vendors and booths to browse through, stop by an antique mall near you and begin your copper collection today.