Dearly loved heirlooms and art objects that have been damaged in handling or deteriorated over time may now be invisibly restored and can be displayed and cherished for many more generations. Restoration may include minor cracks and discoloration to major breakage and missing parts. Nothing is damaged beyond the ability to restore.
The pricing of restoration a piece of heirloom china is based on the number of restorative processes needed and not on hours worked. The restorative process includes cleaning, disassembling (glue removal), reassembling, replacing missing parts, filling cracks, sanding, hand painting, and sealing. Dinnerware that has had extensive repair may be displayed, but not used to serve food as heat and moisture will eventually damage the restored areas.
Chips on the rim of a piece, paint worn off, stains, age cracks, patina, hairline cracks on antique china (crazing) may only signify age and if not unsightly, add to the desirability of a piece. You wouldn't expect that an early 1900's flow blue platter would have all of the gold intact and looking like new.
But if the stains, chips, cracks are unsightly, if that is the first thing you see when you look at the platter, you may consider it worth restoring.
Many people ask, "Is it worth restoring?" This has to be looked at from several points of view. Is it valuable for resale? Will the cost of the repair be greater than the piece is worth? Is it extremely rare? Is it for a collector who needs this particular piece to complete a collection? Does it have incalculable sentimental value to the owner?
If the damage is so severe that the cost of restoration exceeds the value of the piece, don't restore it. If you decide to go ahead with the restoration the completed piece should retain 80% of its former value.
If the heirloom is irreplaceable and is of incalculable sentimental value, by all means, investigate the restoration process. It will be a bargain at any price.
Pictured here are "before and after" photos of some heirloom pieces that were restored. You can see for yourself the benefit of restoration.