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Man Bought A Worn £40 Leather Chair And Sold It For £79,500 In An Auction On TikTok

If you've ever watched Antiques Roadshow, you'll no doubt have dreamt of finding that priceless heirloom or charity shop gem. Well, one person who actually lived it was Justin Miller, from Los Angeles. He recently stumbled upon an old, worn-out leather chair on Facebook Marketplace for a mere $50 (£40). Little did he know, this seemingly ordinary chair held extraordinary value. The man bought a worn £40 leather chair and sold it for £79500!

Author:Black Crystal
Reviewer:Maxwell Canvas
Jun 12, 202322.8K Shares308.3K Views
If you've ever watched Antiques Roadshow, you'll no doubt have dreamt of finding that priceless heirloom or charity shop gem. Well, one person who actually lived it was Justin Miller, from Los Angeles. He recently stumbled upon an old, worn-out leather chair on Facebook Marketplace for a mere $50 (£40). Little did he know, this seemingly ordinary chair held extraordinary value. The man bought a worn £40 leather chair and sold it for £79500!

Man Bought A Worn £40 Leather Chair And Sold It For £79500

Miller, an avid fan of Antiques Roadshow, trusted his intuition when he laid eyes on the chair.
I saw it and I was like, 'That looks like a really interesting chair.'- Justin Miller
A quick Google search confirmed his suspicions as he discovered similar chairs that had sold for exorbitant amounts. Even the seller, a friend of the family, acknowledged its potential worth.
Eager to uncover the chair's true value, Miller sought the expertise of Sotheby's, a renowned auction house and appraiser. They identified the chair as one of approximately 50 1935 wing-backs designed by Frits Henningsen. After investing around $3,000 in repairs, Miller entrusted Sotheby's to list the chair for auction, with an estimated value of $30,000 to $50,000.
TikTok Video Shared by Justin Miller Of The Chair's Auction
TikTok Video Shared by Justin Miller Of The Chair's Auction
The auction, documented in a thrilling TikTok video shared by Miller, captivated viewers as the bidding commenced. Starting conservatively at $28,000, the price skyrocketed within seconds. Tension rose as the bids climbed to $38k, $40k, and beyond. Miller's excitement was palpable as he exclaimed, "It's a $70,000... for a dumb chair?! Oh my gosh!"
The exhilarating bidding warultimately pushed the final selling price to an astonishing $85,000 (£67,577). When factoring in fees, the buyer paid over $100,000 (£79,503) for the chair—an extraordinary return on Miller's initial £40 investment.
This remarkable tale serves as a reminder that hidden treasures can still be found in unexpected places. It demonstrates the power of intuition, research, and taking calculated risks in the world of antiques. Miller's story inspires dreams of unearthing valuable gems in thrift stores, garage sales, and online marketplaces.

The Vintage Boom - Thriving In The Antique Market Amid Supply Chain Challenges

Recent search trends suggest that the future of home decor is rooted in the past. According to Homes & Gardens, the interest in antique stores rose to 50%, while auctions for antiques increased by 80% in 2021. With the demand for pre-loved goods growing rapidly, it’s safe to say that there is a vintage boom.

Biggest Supply Chain Challenges in 2023

Let's get to know how antique dealers are successfully navigating these hurdles and thriving in a time of heightened demand. Drawing inspiration from the incredible auction triumph of Justin Miller, we delve into the strategies antique dealers employ to sustain their businesses.

Stocking Up On Quality And Timeless Pieces

Antique dealers understand the importance of offering unique and high-quality items to captivate their customers. In antique malls like the Brass Armadillo Antique Mall, individual sellers rent booths or spaces to showcase their curated collections. This approach ensures a diverse range of hard-to-find and meticulously crafted items are always available.
Vintage dealers take pride in the durability and authenticity of their merchandise, which often includes antique furniture, clothing, jewelry, toys, wall art, rugs, and lighting decor. These timeless pieces not only add character to one's home but also hold sentimental value, allowing buyers to connect with the past.

Leveraging Multiple Supply Sources

Unlike industries grappling with supply chain disruptions, antique dealers have an advantage due to their wide-ranging sourcing methods. Seasoned dealers acquire their merchandise from various outlets within their region.
They attend estate sales, garage sales, live and online auctions, thrift stores, flea markets, and even collaborate with other antique malls. This multifaceted approach ensures a steady flow of collectibles and prevents inventory shortages. Antique sellers have mastered the art of replenishing their stock, continuously offering customers a fresh selection of treasures from different eras.

Sustainability As A Driving Force

With an increasing emphasis on sustainable practices, the vintage industry aligns well with environmentally conscious consumers. Antique dealers actively contribute to reducing waste by repurposing and reintroducing pre-owned items into the market. They scout flea markets, auctions, and garage sales for reusable treasures.
Moreover, some dealers even engage in the practice of dumpster diving, salvaging valuable antique furniture, vintage clothes, old toys, and other discarded gems. By promoting the concept of "one person's trash is another person's treasure," antique sellers not only cater to sustainability-minded buyers but also play a crucial role in prolonging the lifespan of cherished items.

Pricing For Accessibility

Successful antique dealers understand the importance of appropriately pricing their merchandise. They typically categorize their inventory into two segments. One segment consists of items available for rental purposes, such as for commercial ads, musicvideos, or films, providing a valuable revenue stream.
The other segment targets individuals seeking antique pieces for their personal collections or home decor. With many antique enthusiasts looking for affordable options, dealers strive to offer reasonable rates while maintaining the quality and uniqueness of their products. By striking this balance, antique sellers continue to meet consumer demands and foster enduring customer relationships.
In an era marked by supply chain disruptions, antique dealers have demonstrated their resilience and adaptability. While other industries face shortages, antique sellers thrive by consistently sourcing and replenishing their inventory through diverse channels.

Shopping Antique & Vintage Bargains at Giant Country Flea Market!

The enduring appeal of vintage items, coupled with a commitment to sustainability and accessible pricing, positions the antique market for continued growth. As the vintage boom gains momentum, both collectors and enthusiasts can expect an exciting journey into the past, guided by the passion and expertise of antique dealers.

Essential Steps On How To Open An Antique Shop

Do you want to get lucky with random old things like Justin Miller? If you have a passion for vintage treasures and a desire to turn them into a thriving business, opening an antique shop might be the perfect adventure for you. It's an opportunity to dive into the world of second-hand wonders and create a unique space that captures the hearts of antique enthusiasts.

How to Start an Antique Booth Business! 5 Tips I wish I knew beforehand!

To guide you on this exciting journey, here are the essential steps you need to take:
  • Research the Second-Hand Market -Uncover the hidden gems of the booming second-hand market. Discoverhow people are embracing the charm and sustainability of pre-loved items. Investigate the demand in your area and find ways to differentiate yourself from online platforms.
  • Develop a Unique Vintage Concept -Channel your creativity and choose a vintage concept that reflects your passion. Will you specialize in antique furniture, timeless art pieces, or captivating collectibles? Decide if you want to showcase your treasures exclusively online or create a physical haven for customers to explore.
  • Find the Perfect Vintage Location -Seek out a location that captures the essence of your vintage vision. Consider being close to other antique shops to create a vintage destination, where seekers of nostalgia can wander freely. Don't forget to secure any necessary licenses for public operations or comply with health and safety regulations for home-based ventures.
  • Choose Your Antique Shop's Legal Form -Navigate the legal landscape and choose the right legal structure for your vintage business. Understand the implications on taxation, liability, and company management. Dive into resources tailored to your location for guidance and insights.
  • Curate Your Vintage Treasures -Source and curate a collection of vintage treasures that will captivate your customers. Explore different channels to find unique items and establish relationships with trusted suppliers. Consider transportation logistics and invest in necessary equipment to transport and display your treasures.
  • Craft an Irresistible Vintage Brand - Develop a captivating brand that tells your vintage story and sets you apart. Create an alluring atmosphere, both online and in-store, that transports customers to a bygone era. Embrace the power of social media and community engagement to foster a loyal following.
  • Market Your Vintage Wonderland -Unleash your marketing magic to attract vintage aficionados. Design enticing campaigns, from local advertising to engaging social media content. Consider hosting themed events, partnering with influencers, or collaborating with other local businesses to amplify your vintage charm.
  • Write Your Vintage Success Story -Document your vintage dreams in a comprehensive business plan. Showcase your vision, goals, financial forecasts, and strategies to secure funding and win over potential investors. Let your passion and determination shine through every word.
Embark on this thrilling journey armed with these essential steps, and you'll be well on your way to opening a vintage wonderland that captures the hearts of fellow antique lovers. Get ready to get lucky with timeless treasures and embark on your own vintage business adventure!

People Also Ask

Vintage furniture presents an enticing option as it offers affordability in comparison to purchasing new furniture of comparable quality. Moreover, you may discover that older furniture exhibits superior craftsmanship and employs finer materials compared to contemporary counterparts, often at significantly higher price points.

How To Market Antique Furniture?

To maximize your chances of finding interested buyers, it is essential to target individuals actively seeking antiques. Achieve this by exploring various avenues, such as approaching antique stores or auction houses, as well as utilizing popular e-commerce platforms like Ruby Lane, eBay, or Craigslist, to list and promote your valuable pieces.

What Is The Difference Between Vintage And Antique Furniture?

In simple terms, the difference between vintage and antique lies in their respective age classifications. An antique encompasses various items, including artwork, jewelry, carpets, and everyday objects like housewares and accessories, that surpass the age of 100 years. On the other hand, vintage items are relatively younger, clocking in at less than 100 years old, often exuding an allure that appeals to collectors.

Why Vintage Furniture Is Better?

Vintage furniture tends to surpass the quality of furniture available in the present market. Unlike the pressed wood or particle board commonly used today, vintage furniture is often crafted from genuine wood. This inherent material superiority renders vintage furniture sturdier compared to many modern pieces. Moreover, its ability to withstand the test of time is evident as it has already endured decades of use and remains intact.


In conclusion, opening an antique shop can be a rewarding adventure for those passionate about vintage treasures. With careful planning and a unique concept, you can tap into the booming second-hand market and create a captivating space for antique enthusiasts.
As you curate a collection of timeless items, establish your brand, and market your vintage wonderland, the possibilities for success are endless. Remember, with a little luck and a keen eye for hidden gems, you too can experience the thrill like Justin Miller, when the man bought a worn £40 leather chair and sold it for £79500.
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Black Crystal

Black Crystal

Black Crystal is a captivating writer who finds inspiration in the quiet corners of the street and the mysterious depths beneath bridges. With a penchant for the night, she crafts enchanting tales that explore the uncharted realms of the human experience. Embracing the darkness as her muse, Black Crystal's evocative prose and haunting imagery transport readers into a world where secrets whisper and dreams take shape. Her writing defies categorization, inviting readers to uncover the magic hidden within the shadows and embrace the enigmatic beauty of her nocturnal narratives. Step into her realm, where the written word dances with ethereal grace, and immerse yourself in the captivating stories she weaves.
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