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Antique owners learn how to bring their treasures back to life
Collectors get tips from restoration specialists, appraiser
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Tim. S. Buchanan of Charlotte, N.C., engraves a silver cup by hand Saturday during a “reViving Your Classics” event at the Northeast Georgia History Center in Gainesville. - photo by SARA GUEVARA

Your attic is full of old family junk. It can't be worth anything more than sentiment, right?

Think again: That chipped porcelain doll from granny's childhood could be worth a pretty penny.

Curious collectors got the opportunity to find out how much their old treasures are worth Saturday at the Northeast Georgia History Center.

The event called "reViving Your Classics" included several restoration specialists, an appraiser and four workshops on how to make the photos, furniture and treasures you already own look new again.

"Affordability, using what you have, making the old new again is kind of the concept behind this today," said Julie Carson, education and volunteer coordinator for Northeast Georgia History Center.

There is a certain charm to the items of yesterday and nostalgic piece of furniture can make a house feel like a home.

"With the economy like it is, most people don't have the disposable income to purchase high end antiques," Carson said. "At the same time, people have wonderful things that have gotten broken or are a little aged and they need someone to repair them and restore them and they're perfectly fine again."

If the leather binding on your great-grandfather's Bible is barely holding the pages together, don't worry. It can still be fixed.

Amanda Buck is a fine bookbinder who works out of Dahlonega. She specialized in restoring old and broken books.

"The most fun ones are the oldest ones, 16th and 17th century. Those are my favorite to work on because they have an energy to them," Buck said.

Tim Buchanan is a second generation hand engraver. He is able to recreate engravings that have been worn away over time and create new ones.

Other specialists such as crystal and glass restorers, a chair recaner, a silver smith, a clock restorer were available to answer questions.

Patsy Viles brought a pewter tankard to be appraised for a friend. She found out through the appraisal that the tankard may have been made in 1776. Based on its excellent condition, it could be worth as much as $1,000.

"My friend will be thrilled," Viles said.

Viles owns Remember When Antiques and brought some of her inventory to the event, including antique pottery, furniture and jewelry.

Cathy Herdener organized the event and is please with its success. She said she is glad to be able to help people find the restoration specialists they need.

"This is the first time we've brought this many specialists together under one roof. We hope to do it again and with more specials," Herdener said.

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