Collectible Coasters - Tegestology
What is Tegestology?
Collectible coasters have been a popular collectible for a long time, especially beer coasters, also known as beer mats. The hobby of collecting coasters is also known as tegestology, and is quite popular amongst beer drinkers. Even though collectible coasters are not exactly priceless items, some collectors have made impressive profits from their collections. For example, a collectible coaster was sold on eBay for an impressive $ 1425.
But most collectors are in it for the creative satisfaction that a unique and rare coaster provides them. To begin your own collection, you will first have to decide the category of coasters that you wish to collect. Beer coasters are highly popular and equally easy to obtain. Some research will set you up for identification and valuation. 'A guide to Collecting Beer Mats', by Ian Calvert, is a great book for novices, as it will help them authenticate and value pieces. Another great book is US Coaster Guide, by Tom Byrne.
Apart from books, joining a coaster collectors group is also a great idea. Some of the more popular ones include, American Breweriana Association, British Beermat Collectors Society and many others. These groups are great places to pick up tips and information about the right places and prices. You will also find many websites, created by expert collectors, on the internet, which are a veritable treasure-house of information.
Some of the best places to buy collectible coasters are hotels, bottle stores, soda bottlers, second hand dealers, pubs and bars. Also tell your friends and family to keep an eye out for collectible coasters for you, especially if they travel a lot. Collecting coasters from different countries is a great way to increase the value of your collection. In case there are some particularly rare coasters that you are unable to find, try Ebay, which is a great site for unique items available at unbelievable prices. If this also fails, set up requests for a particular collectible coaster online, like in a blog, or Craig's List.
Like all collectibles, collectible coasters also need to be properly maintained. You will need to store them away from direct sunlight, to avoid the fading or peeling of paint. Also avoid cleaning them with strong detergents, as the paint on the coasters might peel off. Use a dry or partially wet cloth to clean coasters, but do not leave any moisture on them, especially on those made of metal, to avoid rusting. In case you are displaying the coasters, make sure they do not get damaged in the process and avoid exposure to harsh elements. Keep this pointers in mind, as you work your way to becoming an expert on collectible coasters.