how to tell if a wooden bowl is antique
Kristina Davis

This article will guide you through how to tell if a wooden bowl is antique. Antique items are exceptionally impeccable. The art used to carve them is undisputedly the best.

Most last for ages and are sought far and wide. You may be looking forward to purchasing one or could be in possession of one you think is antique.

Antique wooden bowls are extremely rare in this age. What you could be having or what you may get may be a decoy of the real ones. 

It calls for great vigilance while sourcing for one. To help you not fall for decoys, this article will be your ultimate guide.

How would you tell if your wooden bowl or the one you purport to purchase is antique or not?

There is a range of ways at your disposal to validate the antiquity of your wooden bowl.

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From inspecting its patterns to verify it, taking it to an antiquities shop for examination to conducting an online study to establish the make and the year of production. Before you term your bowl as antique, follow these guidelines for surety.

How To Tell The Age Of Wooden Bowls and How To Tell Antique Wooden Bowls Value

how to tell age of wooden bowl

Research in Online Libraries

The Best way you can date your antique bowls is by browsing the internet for antiquities. The internet is the best library for Intel regarding these items.

Most people have shared their views on the internet on what they found concerning antique wooden bowls.

Find These in the Comments Sections of the Blog Pages.

Therefore, for reliable data and guidance that will help you discern whether your bowls are antique, take to the internet and run your searches with the search engines.

Search engines have found a way to rank this information in a Search Engine Optimized manner.

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research online

The results will be ranked from the most related to the least. The many web pages that will be on display once you run your search will give you guidance.

You can also enable local searches to get feedback based on your location.

Tip: Local results help you figure out antique bowls that match your locality.

The Smell of the Wooden Bowl

This is one of the simplest yet best methods to date antique bowels. Why would an antique bowl smell fresh with the scent of modern fashion?

No way.

You can smell your bowl to interpret whether it is antique or not. That which is antique may have the smell of earth or a soil smell.

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Look Out for Signs and Marks That Are Linked to Antiquity

look for signs and marks

Antique wooden bowls, unlike other ordinary bowls, have signs and marks that make them stand out from the rest.

Antique bowls date back to the 1800s and 1900s; they were built with a lot of artistry and craftsmanship.

While looking to identify antique wooden bowls, look out for the following signs and marks that are associated with antiquity.

The Joinery

Antique bowls, unlike any other bigger furniture, made hundreds of years ago, have joinery.

Bowls would only be curved with a lot of craftiness without needing any joinery.

But if there were any, i.e. to have handles on the bowls, then the joinery used while creating them can well be distinguished from the one used in recent times.

a joinery

The joinery used in the olden age is absolutely different from that which is used in the current age.

Note: Olden and antique bowls were joined together if need be by natural glues drawn from tree bark or by loam soil. Today, the joinery is made by machines.

The Finish

Antique bowls were made with a finish that would make them last longer and add quality and beauty to the living room.

That is why they would be best kept in places where they can easily be seen. One way you can identify if a wooden bowl is antique is by investigating the finish.

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In the past, finishes were meant to protect wooden items from spills, stains, abrasions, and moisturization.

Products from wax and oil, shellac, and lacquer were commonly and widely used in making the bowl.

Tip: You can spot wax on the bowl by running your fingernails loosely on the bowl to see if nail marks will be left.

Look Out For The Signs of Tools Used To Make The Bowls

look for signs of tools used

It is so easy to distinguish between wooden bowls made by human hands from those that were processed in a manufacturing plant.

In the olden days, there wasn’t so much technology that would help in creating products as witnessed today. Items were made by people using their bare hands.

This is one way you can identify an antique bowl. The signs of any finishes and designs that are machine-made are a red flag.

Look out for the signs that show the bowl is antique and no sophisticated machine was involved in its making.

Intuition Will Help You Identify Any Handmade Products.

Look out for any marks left behind on the bowls by hand tools such as forks, hammers, scissors, carving implements, and hooks.

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Tip: Remember, handmade bowls have undisputable quality incomparable to the plastic and metallic ones seen in this age.

Compare Two Or More Different Bowls of The Same Type

compare two or more bowl

If in possession of bowls you consider antique or are in an antique shop selecting bowls.

Comparing any two looks alike will help you tell whether they are antique or not.

It is almost impossible for any handmade bowls to be exactly the same regardless of the fashion and the keenness of the artistry applied to them.

Handmade tools can hardly look alike. Seeing antique bowls with everything in common should be considered a red flag.

Tip: Machines alone have the precision to make things look a lot alike.

Look Out for Wormholes

Any bowl that has overlived you, one you inherited from your forefathers, can still not be in a very good-looking condition.

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Although antique items are famed for living longer, over the years, they are most likely eaten by worms and any other wood-eating insects.

look for wormhole

At this point, it is fair enough to believe that you already know how to tell if a wooden bowl is antique.

Although they are highly maintained, chances are that the oldest antique wooden bowls will have signs of being drilled by wood eaters.

The eating might not be so intense but there will most likely be a sign of it.

Any good-looking bowls dubbed antique by your dealer should upset you. These items are too old to be as good as they once were.

Use Antique App Checkers

Technology and innovation are moving to make everything simpler, quicker, and easier.

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There are websites you can find on the internet App stores that will help you identify whether your bowls are antique.

Although these Applications may not be so effective with each and every antiquity, they are easier and simpler to use.

Tip: Applications such as Hallmarks and Valuation are the most outspoken in checking for antiquities.

Take It To Your Local Antiquities Shop For Inspection By A Professional

ask the professionals

If these bowls are in your house and you doubt or would like to be sure if they really are antique.

Then load them up and pay any local antique professional near you a visit to help you identify whether they are.

You can also find most of these antique professionals. If there are none near your locality, contact them for guidance.

This is one of the greatest ways to reveal whether your bowls are antique.

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You won’t have the stress of turning and tossing the bowls up looking for symbols you are fully not aware of.

Read Next: How to Identify Antique Furniture?


How to tell if a wooden bowl is antique shouldn’t take you long. This article has enlisted some of the key and easiest ways to achieve this goal.

Beware of fakes who brand their products and dub them as antique, before making any purchase, be on the lookout.

It is easier for you to buy ordinary bowls in the name of antique ones. Arm yourself with all these to be able to identify an antique bowl. Do not be tricked.