It's always been a family affair. Our parents, uncle and aunt and cousins are all in the antiques industry... so we were perfectly positioned to launch the book.
It took nearly a year to complete... and we ate a lot of chocolate in the process. But it was worth it just to see all the gear.
There are photos of more than 5500 antiques and collectables, vintage and retro, whittled down and chosen from more than 8500 images... and everything has a current value.
Each item shows the price range you could expect to pay for it in a retail shop in Australia, making ours the only Antiques Price Guide in the world compiled especially for the Australian market - with prices direct from the dealer.
More than 140 professional dealers from across Australia selected a cross-section of their gear to be included in the book, forming a national view of the antiques trade that you simply can't get anywhere else. And did we mention the gear?
Because in the end, it's all about the gear. We've packed as much as we could into 544 full colour pages... 27 major sections... more than 68 sub-sections... over 300 snippets of information and current record prices... to make it the Essential Reference.
We're sisters - Julie and Christine Carter. We've been working together in the antiques industry in Australia for more than 30 years and we love it. We cut our teeth book publishing with our father, Alan Carter, and we've been running our own business since 2004. Besides the Carter Sisters Handbook & Price Guide, we publish the national quarterly magazine Antiques and Collectables for Pleasure & Profit.
Over the last 30 years we've worked on magazines, books, calendars, videos (yep, remember when people watched videos!), DVDs, fairs, conferences and theatre shows and all of them were to do with antiques and collectables. I suppose you could say we live the business. But if you want to do something really, really well we think it helps to be passionate about it.