Art and antiques by Dr. Lori

With more expertise and education than many appraisers who serve clients in their homes, I have identified valuable objects that were overlooked for numerous clients over the years.

In most homes, I can spot $25,000 worth of valuables that one may have overlooked.

I have helped people consider the true value of their mother’s Lladro collection and how to sell it, helped families take a second look at the money that could be gleaned from grandpa’s rock collection, and pointed out how much that ugly painting in the guest bedroom is really worth.

Most families who are downsizing, cleaning out estates or trying to deal with the objects collected by relatives over a lifetime, do not know the real value of their stuff on the market.

For those who haven’t yet had me in your home for an in-home appraisal, I have compiled this top 10 list of the objects that are more valuable than you think.

Don’t overlook these items because I have seen them change people’s lives.

Don’t let these objects go without realizing the much needed money that they could bring to your family.

Most people know that vintage toys are valuable, but did you know that computer parts can bring home the cash too?

Don’t rely on an appraisal that only focuses on one thing – specialty appraisals – since no one collects only one type of thing.

Don’t let anything go without an in-home appraisal that covers everything.

I conduct these appraisals regularly.

Costume and

fine jewelry

Most people think that only the real bling is worth money, but costume jewelry pieces command high prices, too.

Shoes and handbags

Vintage names like Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Kate Spade are bringing big bucks with collectors, particularly young women.

Wooden chairs

Solid wood construction retains value in rocking chairs, painted chairs, Windsor chairs, kitchen chairs of maple, oak and cherry.

Precious metals

Any item or pieces of items made of precious metals hold their value and always will.


Just because you can’t identify it, don’t know who the artist is or don’t like the piece, doesn’t mean it isn’t valuable.

I can spot a valuable work of art a mile away. Don’t overlook sculpture, paintings or works on paper

Boxes (yes, boxes!)

Wooden boxes of all types, with and without locking mechanisms, souvenir boxes, tea boxes, cigar boxes, jewelry boxes, knife boxes – the list goes on. If you can put something in it, somebody likely wants to give you money for it.

Celebrity Ph.D. antiques appraiser, author, and award-winning TV personality, Dr. Lori presents appraisal events to audiences worldwide.

Dr. Lori is the expert appraiser on Discovery channel’s “Auction Kings.”

Visit, or call 888-431-1010.

Art and antiques by Dr. Lori

The coming together of the Barbie doll with Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit issue unites two iconic American brands.

Barbie’s appearance in Sports Illustrated celebrates the 50th anniversary edition of the famous and popular swimsuit issue.

And, her appearance doesn’t hurt the toy marketplace either.

In the milestone issue, Barbie is shown wearing her iconic black and white swimsuit from 1959-60.

The highly recognizable and stylish swimsuit carries a well-established secondary collectibles market value of $15 when purchased without the famous mid-century modern doll.

Yes, people do collect vintage Barbie clothes, shoes and accessories (the portable storage closet, car, dream house, airplane, etc.).

Barbie is a legendary toy featured in the current advertising campaign for Sports Illustrated, called “The Doll that Started it All.”

The advertisements in the popular sports magazine will take place in conjunction with sales of a limited edition Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue Barbie doll that only is available online at

The meeting of these two American brands has caused quite a stir among those who say that Barbie and the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue portray an unrealistic female body image to young girls.

On the other hand, Barbie has been seen as a model promoting important women’s issues as she demonstrates the many career choices that today’s women have in contemporary society.

No matter which side of the debate you are on, the collaboration between Barbie and Sports Illustrated is attractive to many groups of active collectors.

The Sports Illustrated Barbie set connects with collectors who are interested in collecting categories such as toys, advertising, famous companies, sports memorabilia.

Whenever two American brands unite like these have, the value of the related collectibles increase on the market. Why? If you can attract interest from many diverse collectors to your object, then there is greater return.

If you are wondering if this Ph.D. American collectibles expert went online and clicked through to buy the limited edition Barbie doll, the smart answer is yes.

So, if you are considering buying the 50th anniversary Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and keeping the magazine for posterity’s sake, go for it.

What’s more, if you buy the special 50th anniversary issue on newsstands now, I’d advise those serious collectors to splurged on the limited edition Barbie doll.

Both items will be worth more as a group. Sports collecting is one of the most popular areas of the vintage and antiques market and toys are another big collecting arena so when the two came together with a milestone 50th anniversary, the collectors say opportunity.

Mattel has been extending the Barbie brand in many new ways lately in an effort to keep the doll current with a generation of tech-savvy American girls.

Alas, the main reason for the advertising expenditure on Mattel’s part is simple. Barbie dolls did not sell as well during the holiday season of 2013 (down 13 percent).

Media insiders say that the recent advertising positioning of Barbie coming together with Sports Illustrated highlights the many women who have started their careers as models and have made an impact as businesswomen, TV show hosts, and entrepreneurs as they matured.

The smart advertising campaign created a new relationship between two companies that is not only causing a stir with sports enthusiasts, feminists, and media moguls, but with toy and sports collectors too.

Celebrity Ph.D. antiques appraiser, author, and award-winning TV personality, Dr. Lori presents appraisal events to audiences worldwide.

Dr. Lori is the expert appraiser on Discovery channel’s “Auction Kings.” Visit, DoctorLori or call 888-431-1010.