The Ultimate Price Guide to Yixing Teapots
Though few will admit regret for their vast financial expenditures, avid Yixing teapot collectors will forewarn you that obtaining a quality hand-crafted teapot is a costly endeavor. That is if they are forthright about their expenses. They will most likely explain what a nice investment they have made as they proudly show off their array of obtained collections that might cause you to feel like you’ve stepped into a gallery of art or an antique display.
Some Yixing teapot owners who possess one, or maybe just a few pots that they cherish. These pots remain the ones that have unique personalities and charms. It takes time to develop the awe-inspiring relationship that grows with each and every use of a Yixing teapot. With each new steeping of tea, it takes on a new flavor, which it also gives back to release inside of every pot of tea brewed from that point after. This makes Yixing teapots highly sought after almost as if each teapot is a member of the family.
Whether you are looking to buy a Yixing teapot for the purpose of collecting or for everyday use, it’s critical to know how much to expect to pay. Here are some practical tips to assist you to know what you’re obtaining for your money and help you not overpay.
Buy from those you trust
Only buy a Yixing teapot from a seller you trust. If you are using it to brew tea, make sure it is unglazed or unpainted. Painted or glazed pots are not going to absorb the flavor, which is part of the charm and reason for buying Yixing in the first place. Plus, examine the pot before purchasing it to make sure there are no fine-line cracks.
Quality of the clay and reputation of the designer
Other aspects will affect the price. For instance, if the clay is Zhuni, expect to pay high dollar amounts more than a more affordable purple zisha or common zini. If the artist of the pot is acclaimed, the price will be steeper. Some pots are unadorned or basic and simple in design. Others feature more intricate, complex carvings or are crafted in a unique sculptural way.
If the Yixing teapot artistic craftsman is new to the art, expect to pay less than those who are skilled in the craft. As the artist improves his/her craftsmanship, the prices will reflect by climbing from around $100 to upwards of $500.
Sizing and safety
The size of the pot will also determine the price. Smaller pots will typically be less expensive than the more substantial ones that require more clay to craft. A small Yixing teapot that has been mass-produced, as opposed to hand-crafted, will usually cost about $100. If you discover one for less, you are probably forfeiting craftsmanship, quality, and possibly safety as some pots that claim to be Yixing are really inferior imitations made from clay that is unmeant for food or drink purposes.
Let’s get started with a first purchase
It’s a sensible idea to introduce with lower-priced, functional pots that will typically cost between $100 and $400. Naturally, when you peruse Hong Kong galleries or private museums, it is not unheard of to find $1,000 plus price tags. Ultimately, your budget is going to determine how much you can afford to spend.
For an authentic, excellent quality Yixing teapot, expect to pay anywhere between about $80 to $120. Though sometimes you will discover an authentic deal for slightly less, any teapot that cost less than $50 in price is most likely not very good quality. Cheap, low-quality pots can absolutely ruin the taste of the tea or could be unsafe for drinking. Although be careful not to assume a high-priced teapot means quality. Never rush to overpay.
Unless you are collecting an antique, your pot should not cost thousands of dollars. $5,000 pots are typically reserved for die-hard antique collectors. Conceivably you will never want to sell your pots once you have broken them in and seasoned them to your liking. But, it will be a purchase you will cherish forever.