A True Collector’s 3 Keys to Collecting

By Carrie Lynn

Maybe when you hear the word “collectible” your brain automatically goes to an item on a shelf that doesn’t get touched, sitting there for everyone to look.

Or maybe not.

Everyone has collected something in their lives or had a favorite toy that they just couldn’t live without. The term collectible can have a different meaning for everyone. 

Because it’s not just comics books or action figures that people collect but a wide range of different and unique items. It could be cars or postage stamps. 

Coins are a major collectible item

There are also levels of collecting. To me, there’s 5. 

Let’s start at level 5. This would be collecting items that are 100% complete. Their condition is 10/10. Then you have this item displayed so nothing can touch it. It is sealed and not even a wisp of air can get to it. I would rate that level 5 collecting.  

Level 4 would be similar to level 5 but the item is not as protected. It may not be in mint condition or under lock and key. 

Level 3 is the in-between. Your item is in good condition and you don’t mind the occasional look and touch of your item. You’re more calm about displaying your item and not so worried about if something will happen. 

Level 2. You do your best to display your item but you’re not worried about something happening to it. Your not so concerned that it’s complete. You would like the condition to be great but being less than 10/10 doesn’t stop you from having that in your collection. 

And finally, level 1! You don’t care about the condition, you’re just happy to have it in your collection. You can share your item with others who have the same love for that item. You’re more than happy to let others look and even touch.

Some collectors just like their stuff all thrown together

I remember when I got my first action figure. It was from one of my favorite shows. At the time I had no clue that the show would last 10 seasons and would be a pain to get all the action figures years later.  It was my 1st collector item and I so badly wanted to open it and hold it. 

I’m the kind of person who loves not only to look at something but I needed to touch! 

I would remember going on school trips to a museum and I would always get yelled at for trying to touch everything. So I would always buy 2 of the same items, one to collect and one to open and touch. 

Now, you can only imagine how expensive that can be. I would buy items for $100 and then get another one so I could open. Thankfully, as I got older my collecting habits changed.

What kind of collector are you?

If I could give any advice to someone who is new to collecting, it would be this… 

Collect what you like! Don’t get swooped in by the hype of a new item that is going to be released or a hard-to-find item that seems impossible to get.  Unless, of course, if that impossible item is something you like/love them go for it. Because nothing is impossible to get.  

The second thing I recommend is to wait. I totally understand the “I want it now and I will pay anything to get it now” attitude though. 

Let’s take Funko as an example. A Funko pop is released and everyone is after it! People will buy huge amounts and then turn around and sell them to people for 4 times the amount. You think that Funko won’t make any more for that one pop so you end up paying way over the standard price. 

That Funko is now worth let say $500. But once the hype goes away the price of that Funko pop will drop. Trust me, I have seen and done it. 

I once paid $300 for a Funko pop! I needed it and had to have it. I had no patience in waiting. Now it’s worth around $50. 

I’m not saying all Funko pops will be like that, however, unless there is a set number for a Funko pop then it’s more than likely to drop in price. 

(When I say a set number, I mean a Funko pop that is limited to the number and will not be re-produced like others that are not limited. Like a 320 piece Doctor Who Funko, there is only 320 of that Funko and it will not be made again. So as hard as it is to wait, it will end up saving you a lot of money in the end.)

I remember when I got into Funko pop collecting, I was buying everyone I could get my hands on. It was like the beanie babies all over again! I had all kinds of Funko from every kind of franchise. They were taking over my place. They were stacked up so high a cat could run by and a tower would fall. (You can bet I spend a nice chunk of cash on them.)

Collect what you love! Who cares what it looks like?

So remember,

  1. Avoid the hype.
  2. Be patient.
  3. Collect what you love. 

It saves a lot of money and is a lot more fulfilling. 

Now let’s see if I can keep following my own advice…

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