What walking canes are worth to collect?The answer for this question we want to give in this blog and to help you to choose only the best walking sticks to your collection!
What walking canes are worth to collect?
In centuries past, well-heeled gentlemen, and ladies too, were seldom seen without a walking stick in hand. Unlike today, canes of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, often boasting handles of precious metals and jewels, served as symbols of wealth, power and social stature. They were much more a fashion accessory than walking aide.
Of course, the dictates of society have changed drastically since then and the fashionable engagements that filled the days of the well-to-do are far less stringent. Today, canes are more utilitarian in nature and are used primarily as an aid for getting around.
They generally lack the attention to aesthetic beauty that once dominated their manufacture. Yet despite their decline on the fashion scene, the walking stick is enjoying an extraordinary resurgence in popularity among collectors who have become fascinated with the history, workmanship and hidden treasures found in them.
The cane's role as a token of social stature took hold during the 16th and 17th centuries when kings and aristocrats introduced them into society duly encrusted with jewels and precious metals. So fervent was the demand by stature-hungry nobility for extravagant walking sticks that artisans were compelled to stretch the level of their creativity to new heights. Portraits of kings and aristocrats of Europe often include extraordinary walking sticks of gold and silver outlandishly encrusted with jewels of every hue and size.
By the 19th and early 20th century, the importance of the walking stick as a status symbol had extended down to the middle and, in some cases, the lower classes and its role as a fashion accessory was firmly in place. The industrial revolution that swept through Europe in the mid 19th century added further fuel to the cane's enormous popularity by making production faster and much less expensive. It was during this period that the system cane or gadget cane, canes that served a dual or hidden purposes, flourished. More than 1500 patents for these wonderful canes were applied for ranging from sword canes, to physician's canes, to fishing pole canes and even to canes that converted into bicycles.
While most decorative canes were manufactured in England and France, Carl Fabergé of Russia and Tiffany Studios in America produced some of the most magnificent and expensive canes in the world. Today, these canes are the most highly prized pieces in any collection.
Few things offer a better telltale of history than collectible walking sticks. Their range in decoration and function are certainly testaments to the ingenuity and talent of the artisans who created them, but they are also windows into the lives of our ancestors who possessed them. The honor of owning a walking stick lies in the story buried within it. Beneath the surface of many sticks one can find an extraordinarily accurate commentary not only of the people, but also the major social, economic and political issues of the times.
In France, during the civil unrest of the 19th century, canes were often prohibited in public places or during public gatherings as they often concealed deadly weapons such as swords, spikes and guns. French insurgents used canes with hidden razors to discretely sabotage police horses in crowded gatherings by slashing their ankles. When the police looked for the dastardly perpetrator, the weapon was already retracted, hidden in its innocent looking cane shaft and the insurgent was well on his way from the scene... completely undetected.
Canes were also used during politically tumultuous times to demonstrate allegiance. One such cane had what appeared to be an ivory knob handle with ordinary rings carved into it. However, when a light was shined upon it, it cast a shadow of Napoleon's profile, identifying the carrier as a supporter of the overthrown emperor. Canes also identified members of organizations such as the Freemasons who carried three-sided canes representing their society's symbol.
Such stories number in the thousands and for the collector they are the driving force behind collecting walking sticks. Add to that the incredible beauty, workmanship and rarity of many walking sticks and collectors find themselves unable to resist this engaging pastime.
Building your collection
Building any kind of fine collection is a highly personal endeavor and whichever road you choose to follow, if you adhere to the premise of quality over quantity you will be well on your way to amassing a valuable collection. Collections of any kind that hold superior value and importance are those whose pieces were selected primarily for their quality, rarity or provenance and secondly for their price.
Generally, decorative canes of exceptional beauty or canes made of exotic and rare materials bring a higher price.
In our shopwe have a big variaty of unique, exclusive and designer walking canes and sticks of high quality! And we sure that all of tem are worth to be in your collection!