The Felt Fanatic Condition Guide

 

In the world of vintage collectibles, the condition of the item can play a significant role in determining the value of the item. Pennants are no different. These are the terms and descriptions I use to evaluate and determine the value for each pennant I have in stock. Every flaw on an item is considered when evaluating its condition. Finding certain pennants in high grade condition are among the rarest sports collectibles available in the hobby, and therefore command a premium. It is extremely important to have a consistent, transparent process for grading so that buyers understand exactly what they are adding to their collection.

 

UNSOLD STOCK – Brand new pennant, either never distributed to retailers, or distributed but never put on the sales floor. These pennants have no flaws of any kind and still maintain a crispy new feel despite their age.

 

NEAR MINT (NM) – A pennant with no significant flaws. May have been priced for retail sale but never sold or sold to a collector who took very good care of it. A near mint pennant could have one of three flaws. There could be slight splitting at the tip of the pennant, the result of prolonged storage in bent/folded position, creasing that could be flattened out with appropriate storage or some slight unraveling of the threads at either end of the spine.

 

EXCELLENT / NEAR MINT (EX/MT) – A pennant with 1 or 2 minor flaws that would be difficult to notice with the naked eye. A pennant in EX/MT condition might also have some slight yellowing that would be consistent with its age. The screen printing on an EX/MT is still in superb condition and does not show any kind of cracking or chipping. A pennant in EX/MT condition would have TWO of these potential minor flaws. There could be a small pinhole at either end of the spine, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, splitting at the tip, a pinhole at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt common in pennants from 70/80s. The yellowing should not detract from the look of the pennant and would be difficult to see in some lighting or from a distance.

 

EXCELLENT (EX) – This term describes a pennant in “average” condition and is the most common condition a pennant is usually found in. An EX pennant served its purpose and was proudly hung on the wall by its purchaser. The screen printing on a pennant in EX condition may show slight hairline cracks as a result of prolonged storage in a rolled position. These cracks would not be noticeable from a distance of more than a few feet. EX pennants do not have any significant flaws outside of a single pinhole at each corner or some very slight cracking in the graphics. In addition to a single pinhole at each corner, an EX pennant might have no more than TWO of these potential minor flaws. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt common in pennants from 70/80s. The yellowing should not detract from the look of the pennant and would be difficult to see in some lighting or from a distance.

 

VERY GOOD / EXCELLENT (VG/EX) – A pennant in VG/EX condition has no more than 3 pinholes at each corner and age related yellowing might be more pronounced throughout the pennant than just along the edges. The screen printing on a pennant in VG/EX condition may show hairline cracks or slight chipping as a result of prolonged storage in a rolled position. These cracks would not be noticeable from a distance of more than a few feet. In addition to as many as 3 pinholes at each corner, a VG/EX pennant might have no more than TWO of these potential minor flaws. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt, a small spot stain (no larger than a quarter) away from the graphics of the pennant near the edges or tip.

 

VERY GOOD (VG) – A pennant in VG condition has a combination of TWO significant flaws, most often multiple (4-6) pinholes at each corner, pronounced yellowing throughout or a small spot stain near the edges, corners or tip. The screen printing on a pennant in VG condition may show hairline chipping or cracking that is difficult to see from a distance. Slight moth damage or thin spots might be apparent along the edges or at the tip. In addition to as many as 6 pinholes at each corner, a VG pennant might have no more than THREE of these potential minor flaws. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt or a small spot stain away from the graphics of the pennant near the edges or tip.

 

GOOD – A pennant in good condition shows apparent wear in the form of several different types of significant flaws. There could be pinholes (7+), pronounced yellowing, multiple small spot stains or spatter stains, creasing/wrinkling and/or small tears or fraying at the tip or corners. The screen printing on a pennant in Good condition might show cracking and chipping wider than hairline level and it could be seen from about 7 feet away. Moth damage might be more obvious, resulting in multiple small holes and thin spots along the edges or at the tip. Small foreign markings such as writing may also exist. In addition to the potential significant flaws already described, a Good pennant might have no more than THREE of these potential minor flaws. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt or a small spot stain away from the graphics of the pennant near the edges or tip.

 

FAIR – Fair condition pennants are clearly low grade and show obvious distress in multiple areas. There could be pinholes (7+), pronounced and darkened yellowing, multiple small spot stains, spatter stains or signs of water stains, creasing/wrinkling and/or small tears or fraying at the tip or corners. Moth damage might be more apparent throughout the pennant. The screen printing on a pennant in Fair condition might show cracking and chipping wider than hairline level, the cracking/chipping can be seen from a distance and detracts from the overall appearance of the graphic. In addition to the potential significant flaws already described, a Fair pennant might have no more than FIVE of these potential minor flaws. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt or a small spot stain away from the graphics of the pennant near the edges or tip.

 

POOR – The lowest grade for a pennant. This grade is reserved for pennants with obvious and severe damage worse than described above. Pennants in Poor condition often have multiple significant flaws that greatly detract from the visual aesthetic of the pennant. These flaws can include moth damage that gives the flag a tattered look, darkened yellowing throughout, water damage, dark stains or foreign markings. The screen printing on a poor pennant might show obvious cracking and/or chipping that can be seen from a distance or makes the graphic look incomplete. There could be any combination of minor flaws in addition to the serious flaws already described. There could be splitting at the tip, creasing throughout from being folded in storage, staple holes in the spine from where a retail hanger was removed, unraveling of the threading at either end of the spine or slight yellowing along the edges of the felt or a small spot stain away from the graphics of the pennant near the edges or tip.