Gouda pottery collection


How much is “Gouda”-pottery worth?

Let me start to give you a real life example. A nice looking vase came for sale on E-bay and fetched nearly 300 dollars. 4 Months later the same vase was offered for re-sale and it fetched 80 dollars. No apparent reason for this decline, it was just that no other buyer was driving up the price the second time around. I tell this example to show how hard it is to set a value for a certain piece. Keep in mind that the pieces are rare, so it is not all that easy to look up how much a piece sold for last time around.

So, what is it worth; that is just about the hardest question to answer. I described   here    how scarce Gouda pottery is, so one might expect very high prices. That however is somehow not the case, it is actually often cheaper to buy an older piece then it is to buy genuinely handmade pottery created nowadays.

Compared to the value of old coins, Gouda pieces are cheap. One of the rare Australian coins is the 1930 one penny, about 1200 of them were minted. The value of these is in the 10’s of thousands of dollars.  A Gouda piece on the other hand goes for a fraction of this price despite the fact that some of them are infinitely scarcer.  The average price of Gouda pottery traded seems to vary from 50 to 150 dollars. That compares poorly with the value of the coin quoted above. Many smaller pieces trade between 20 and 100 dollars, larger more significant pieces trade for a few hundred dollars or more. In rare cases it is possible to fetch more again, but that is more the exception then the norm. That is of course if the piece is without chips, cracks or restorations. The fine crackle (Crazing) that is often present in the glaze is not looked at as a defect, it is just accepted as a sign coming with age.

Given the scarcity of the article the price should be higher, but there is of course the nature of supply and demand. On the demand side, the number of Gouda collectors might not be high enough to sustain higher prices.

The other thing that often clouds the current value is the prices obtained in the past. At the time the euro was introduced in Europe prices seem to have peaked. This was possibly due to people whitewashing large amounts of cash. In the years that followed prices declined again. This is a good thing for the average collector, it might not be so good if you are an investor and bought at the wrong time.

-          Normally older items fetch more than those made at a later date.

-          Damaged items are heavily discounted.

-          A good mark that identifies the piece is essential.

The real challenge is to find an interested buyer; the rarity of most pieces is the key. If someone really wants a piece, that person will be prepared to pay a premium.

In general buying pottery is easier than selling it.

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