Extremely rare vintage Hawaiian shirt
s have sold for more than $10,000. While not all old Hawaiian shirts are lined with gold, you may be surprised to know that it is not uncommon for them to sell for hundreds or even thousands of dollars a piece. So how can you tell if you have a treasure? The hard part for the novice collector is trying to understand how the valuation process works. Valuing a vintage garment is as much an art as it is a science, there are numerous factors to take into consideration.
1. Manufacturer: Some manufacturers are more highly sought after than others. The reasons for manufacturer preference vary but can include style, colors and even such details as the type of buttons used on a vintage Hawaiian shirt.
2. Age: The general rule is that all others factors being equal, the older the shirt the more valuable the shirt. Aloha shirts were originally made in the 1930's in Hawaii out of Silk fabric imported from Japan. These hand made silk shirts from the 1930's are considered extremely valuable and highly sought after by collectors from around the world.
3. Condition: The better the condition the higher the price. Many issues can detract from the value of a shirt including fading, holes, tears, stains and especially a missing label.
4. Pattern: Some patterns are true pieces of art and bring big money from collectors. Art Vogue is known for its back panels prints of the 1940's - 50's. These non repeating patterns, featured on the back of a shirt, are highly sought after and only made by a handful of manufacturers, Art Vogue being the most well known.
5. Size: In general, the bigger the size the more valuable the shirt as more people can wear it. Vintage sizes run smaller than the current sizing used by manufacturers. The 'Average American' has grown over the years and so have the sizes. For example a 'XL' sized shirt produced in the 1940's in now equivalent to a modern day size medium.
6. Product Demand: Some shirts are just wicked rare, so hard to find that they can bring in thousands of dollars.
7. Color: Some colors are preferred by the collecting community including blue and black which are exceptional background colors for the multicolor designs.
While this list in not exhaustive, it gives you an idea of the factors that go into the mental algorithm that helps determines a vintage Hawaiian shirts value. The bottom line in Aloha shirt valuation is that while certain factors can guide a valuation, ultimately a vintage shirt is a piece of art and value is in the eye of the collector.
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