YouTube has become a platform for people like makeup mogul Jeffree Star, toy reviewer Ryan ToysReview and gamer PewDiePie to become famous.
Antiques collector Alexander Archbold also found some fame from YouTubing, gaining in popularity after he made a series of videos about purchasing a house filled to the brim with possessions renowned Canadian potter Mary Borgstrom accumulated. Read on to find out how he made money off the purchase and saved valuable artwork and family heirlooms in the process.
1. It all started when Alexander Archbold was looking for a change
He didn’t always have a store and popular web series. Alberta, Canada-based Archbold worked various jobs before his antique dealing and YouTube career. This included opening a toy shop with his wife at one point, working in the film industry and managing two Apple stores. These experiences didn’t quench his thirst for adventure, however.
“It was a good paying job, but it didn’t have any adventure,” Alexander Archboldtells Money.com. “I felt like a piece of machinery.” He was unhappy and needed to find another venture that would bring him purpose, meaning and most importantly, adventure.
2. Archbold always loved antiques
“I started buying and selling at nine-years-old,” Archbold told Finance101. “I would set up at antique shows and I’d be sitting there next to senior citizens who were selling dishes and I’d be there at nine-years-old selling toys.” At first, it was because he wanted new toys — he bought broken toys and fixed them.
Then, he discovered he could earn extra cash from buying and reselling things he thrifted. “My folks worked really hard but they had a really tough time making ends meet,” Archbold explains. He’d go around to various garage sales, buy things, then resell them for more money.
3. He and his wife opened an antique store
With his wife Melissa Archbold, he opened an antique store late 2016. An adventurer at heart, Archbold thought owning a store and being his own boss would offer the flexible schedule he desired. Mrs. Archbold is a preschool teacher, so she mostly focuses on that while Archbold works at the unique antique shop.
He says she’s very supportive of the shop, however. They called the Edmonton, Alberta-based store Curiosity Incorporated. Instead of spending money on marketing, Archbold decided to work on the store’s social media presence to build awareness of Curiosity Incorporated.
4. He began building an online presence for his store
Archbold didn’t start making money off his YouTube channel at first — with things like this, it takes time. YouTube pays YouTubers based on how many people engage with its ads, not video views. You’re more likely to make money the more views you get, however. With a subscribership of 239,888 (as of May, 2019), Archbold probably makes some sweet cash.
He already had a strong YouTube presence when his most popular series took off — “The Potter’s House.” The first video, “Potters House Part 1. We bought a hoarded house! 100 years of stuff! what will we find???,” has over 1.8 million views.
5. The “Potter’s House” YouTube series took off
The home belonged to renowned Canadian potter Mary Borgstrom. Borgstrom was known for her work in what is called primitive pottery. Her daughter and son-in-law sold Archbold the home for $20,000 Canadian Dollars (CAD). This is equivalent to almost $15,000 USD. Borgstrom developed a hoarding disorder later in her life, accumulating enough possessions to fill her house top to bottom.Borgstrom’s children had considered bulldozing the home or doing a controlled burn on the home. Archbold is glad they didn’t. “More than buying the house and more than trying to find some treasures to sell, preserving her legacy has been probably the most important thing,” he tells Finance101.
6. Archbold’s YouTube videos look professionally made
We imagine his channel could easily be televised on A&E or HGTV or a similar channel (in fact, he says he’s been approached by networks but hasn’t sealed a deal yet)! Archbold had previous experience working in the film industry which lent itself to the professionalism in his YouTube videos. “We wanted it to feel very much like someone was watching an actual produced television show,” says Archbold.
“I do try and take some time when it comes to the editing to put music in and make people see and feel the emotion that I saw and felt,” explains Archbold. When Archbold went through Borgstrom’s possessions, he tried to be as systematic and quick about it — this methods lends itself to an engaging video.