What’s the Deal with Antiques and Empaths?

On my post ‘At a Glance 30 Traits of an Empath’ there is one trait that has caused some controversy over the years and that is:

Trait 28   Will not choose to buy antiques, vintage or second-hand. 

Anything that’s been pre-owned carries the energy of the previous owner. An Empath may even prefer to have a brand new car or house (if they are in the financial situation to do so) with no residual energy.

Many people wrongly assume the reason number 28 is on the list is because antiques hold negative energy. Anything pre-owned can carry negative or positive energy but this is not the reason it is on the list.

It is not unusual for antiques to be revered for their beauty and historical value. They are highly prized possessions. Even those not of a Sensitive nature will love to feel the energy and sense the history behind an antique.

However, for some Empaths being around antiques, or anything previously owned, can make them feel uncomfortable. They have a strong aversion to them but cannot put their finger on why.

So why does this happen?

Anything  that has been pre-owned has an energetic imprint and carries the energy of the previous owner, or owners, in the way of residual energy.

Residual energy is like an imprint from the past that lingers into the future.

To some, this residual energy can feel crowded or cluttered and, as many Empaths abhor clutter and crowding (See post) they may feel a natural aversion or repulsion to second-hand items without really knowing why.

Residual clutter equates to stagnated energy and can be extremely draining to the body and mind of the Sensitive person. And this includes clutter the eye cannot see.

Most types of clutter can have a debilitating effect on the Empath. It creates a sense of overcrowding in one’s own energy field, and can deplete physical energy levels, causing feelings of sluggishness, apathy and an uninspired mind.

       ‘Too much residual energy leads to a cluttered mind and energy field’

If you are one who has a natural aversion to antiques, old properties or anything second-hand, now you know why. 

But, as with anything in life there are always exceptions.

All Empaths have varying levels of Sensitivities. Some will be affected more by residual energy than others. There are many who dislike anything new or mass-produced (especially if the items were produced under poor conditions)  and love being round antiques or previously owned items.

We may all be Sensitive but we still have our differences and ways that are unique to us.

Hope this helps on your Empath journey.

If you want to discover more about being an Empath click here.

Until next time…

©Diane Kathrine at Empaths Empowered



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29 thoughts on “What’s the Deal with Antiques and Empaths?

  1. I am the opposite, as you mentioned in the last paragraph. BUT…I do remember before I understood energy that I LOATHED all antiques and antique stores. Not because the items were ugly or not desirable, but because I always felt really icky going into them because I could sense the previous owner’s emotions which were sometimes very negative with certain items. I also could sense the losses of the previous owners and their family around items that were clearly once owned by someone who was now deceased. And I felt that negative energy for the rest of the day, sometime even DAYS after. This was until I was maybe about 29 or so.

    Then, something switched overnight almost when I lost my grandma and happened to stop by my first estate sale ever about a month after. And at that point, I started seeing and feeling antiques for their beautiful energy that their previous owners treasured them for. I picture people like my grandma getting excited about their new teacup or table or clothing 50 or 150 years ago. They feel special to me now, and I will always choose 2nd hand antiques to a new item any day. Granted, at this very first estate sale I was literally in tears in a closet because I could feel the owner’s energy. I reluctantly bought a few gorgeous dresses of hers and by the end of the day, I felt really happy about my purchases. I felt like I was giving them a new life, and I truly felt like the previous owner was also happy that I was doing so. Otherwise, they would just rot away in a landfill somewhere.

    So for me, my empath ways are actually what makes me value them even more than the average person. I get a boost of energy from them. I think there is quite a bit of fear surrounding antique items when empaths have a hard time knowing why these items can be so negative and draining. It’s scary! But once you realize that you are in control of which items you buy, and you don’t have to buy everything in a store, it becomes easy and fun! Estate sales are my go-to now as well because I can tell just by looking at photos in an advertisement whether the owners had good energy or not. Most estate sales feel good to me because most people are inherently good and are just trying to enjoy the simple things in life.

    That being said, there are some objects I just do not feel good around, and of course, I do not buy them. I actually was gifted something once that wasn’t even an antique but that the person had kept in their home during a particularly turbulent time in their life, and it had such a bad energy that I had to get rid of it. Even though I loved this friend that gave it to me, only her negative experiences were radiating from it. It took me a while to figure that out since I thought there was no way an innocent new(ish) item owned by a best friend could impact me like that.

    Also, if you feel bad energy about an entire antique shop, it is probably not the items, but the building or location they are in. Or there could be a few overpowering objects in the store, but that doesn’t mean all of the items are negative. Granted, I know even overwhelming positive emotions can be too much, so obviously this is not always about negative emotions as the author stated. It took me practice to get comfortable with feeling other people’s emotions through their previously owned objects, and this may definitely not be for everyone!

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  3. I can’t go into some second hand shops. I notice that my energy crashes when I am confronted by all of the thrown out items and I’m left feeling low for the rest of the day.

    • Yes, this vibe depresses me as well sometimes. It’s such a shame to see so many perfectly good objects seemingly discarded without a care. Or even worse, objects that are very reluctantly thrown away by loved ones of someone who has passed who simply cannot keep everything, or people who have to downsize due to financial strain, a move, etc…

      With those feelings, I have tried to put a positive spin on it and I think of myself as a “rescuer” for these items. Obviously I can’t save them all, but it does help to feel like you are at least keeping some things alive a bit longer and also helping the planet at the same time. It’s still overwhelmingly sad at times, but this is what has helped me learn to love antiques and 2nd hand things.

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  5. P.S. I bought a beautiful china pattern that was discontinued….At first from someone who previously owned it (and used it). I wanted it, but could not bring myself to use it. I discovered on eBay the same pattern that was also previously owned, but it was in the original packing and never used…In fact, it was in their attic. I sold the used pattern and replaced it with the never used set, which is unheard of…The pattern stopped production almost 20 years ago. The pattern is Moonspun by Lenox. It was as though the still packaged set was meant for me…In fact, I almost chose it 30 years ago. It even contained the original paperwork from the factory, still boxed in original plastic. I had no clue I was an empath then, I just knew this was all necessary for me to enjoy this set. Amazing how this happened!

  6. This explains why I cannot tolerate second hand anything, though I freely give items to charity or through re-sell. The antiques I have are high end, though now I understand why they pull me in rather than build me up, even if they ‘speak to me’ upon first discovery of them. I also have a Ligne Roset desk that was created for me in France, and it is the best desk I have ever owned. I have it up for sale to replace it with another antique, though now I know why it would not sell, in spite of a high interest for it; it is also featured in House Beautiful; it is meant for me as I spend hours at my desk which has become a place of high learning. When I owned a high end antique desk, it did not have the same energy. Now I also know why moving into a building that is not new also creates a pulled in feeling. Thank You very much for this information….Namaste.

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  8. I have an aversion to new items especially if made in sweatshops, I get physically ill, I can hold a garment in my hand and tell you if it was produced in south america, middle east, usa, or china. It is an odd thing to know.

    • It is common for Sensitive folk to pick up on the conditions an item was made in, and whether it was made from love or forced labour. Although not everyone is aware that is the reason why they have an aversion to certain items.

      Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  9. Like everything it is important to follow your own intuition about what feels right to you. I like both new and old. I am more disturbed by new items that are made cheaply and mass marketed. I try to by higher quality local items. I feel new energy coming to an older object I may repurpose. I am overwhelmed by clutter and work to keep this in balance.

  10. Hi, I’m an empath. I’ve known since I was about 11 or 12 and just recently decided to ignore my traditional Christian upbringing (although I abandoned the faith years ago) and embrace whole heartedly my empathic nature. I agree with your list but I have to say that I love antiques. I am very selective about what I choose and when I select one I know it’s a keeper. It just feels like home. I am extremely overwhelmed by clutter. But recycling an old piece of furniture or clothing makes me feel closer to earth and allows an article a second chance to bring beauty and usefulness into another’s life.

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  12. I totally agree with this! I absolutely refuse to accept gifts that are hand me down stuff, and I refuse to purchase antiques. I really do believe that residual energy affects the atmosphere. Brand new stuff doesn’t hold any negative energy. But what happens if you buy something that is brand new, and the person that made the item that you are buying, you can feel the energy that they have while they were making the item?

    • Hi Stem Queen,

      Yes, a brand new item can carry the energy of its creator, especially if they had put a lot of time, effort and love into it. For some Empaths, this could feel a little crowded and for others, it may draw them in. However, an item made by someone who isn’t enjoying what they are doing/creating, or if it is made in a factory that has appalling conditions, that lower vibration can also be carried and felt.

      Thanks for Sharing 🙂

    • Yes I feel equally amounts of negativity from brand new objects. I can’t explain it, but sometimes I will just find myself staring at something in a store and feeling overwhelming sadness and hopelessness. I won’t even consciously be thinking about factory conditions whatsoever, it’s just an emotion that is stirred up. This is also though why I have a hard time throwing anything that isn’t mass produced out. I can feel the energy of the person who spent time creating it, and it just feels so wrong to me, so I never throw those items out and either wind up keeping and treasuring them, or I resell them or donate them. I literally cannot stand watching “destruction” videos where items are smashed or set on fire for fun. It makes me physically ill.

  13. I’ve recently learned that I’m an empath. I didn’t realize many of my problems were related to absorbing the energies from others who regularly dumped their issues in my lap. My husband loves antiques. Me, not so much. Now I understand why. A shaman friend had me smudge my home due to severely negative energy brought into my home by someone else, and the smudging also helped ease my feelings about the antiques. I’m so happy to have found your blog.

  14. I remember wondering about that because I love old things, used things, things with patina. I feel TERRIBLE on the rare occasions I go to a mall or look at “new” clothes. The energy is ugly. I feel/see the sweatshops, the pollution, the greed, the wastefulness, the soullessness. I’m selective about the “old” things I buy. When I thrift clothes, I immediately wash them and use the materials to create something new. When I wear my creations, it’s like having a force field of love surrounding me. I’ve given some as gifts, too. People tell me they can feel it as well. XXXOOO

  15. I will always take home second hand items that lovingly ask me to. Always. They then emanate the love the previous owner had for them. If I don’t get that request I leave it. Works every time. Can’t explain it any better than that. I bought a used car in 2002. Had my choice of two nearly identical but mine “asked” me to. I drive her still.

    • I love this comment! I tried explaining this in a very long-winded way before I read yours but you sum it up perfectly! All of my objects speak to me and give me loads of positive energy throughout the day! I even feel a protection of sorts from some items. I shop estate sales primarily, because I have found that I can view photos in the ads and tell immediately if the home and previous owners are good energy, which usually means all of their items will carry that vibe.

      And I also had the same experience with my vehicle. I almost bought 2 nearly identical ones but something kept holding me back and I was even told by my friends and family that they thought I was jumping the gun. I knew exactly what I wanted, but I also believed them because I could feel it too. Then, very shortly after, the car I bought came up as a new listing, and within an hour of it being posted, I called the dealership and told them to hold it for me because I was coming down to get it that night. I took it for a quick test drive even though I already knew it was mine, and then bought it on the spot without even negotiating. The reason I did not negotiate was because it was the EXACT price point to the dollar that I had been trying to negotiate at other dealerships to no avail, and it just felt like a gift from the universe and the previous owner. It was all around good vibes and I don’t ever plan on getting rid of it 🙂

  16. I cannot agree more. I can’t stand it. No reason other than I feel a complete aversion to anything that’s not new. Anything pre owned affects me. When the kids buy toys at the school sale or my partner who loves vintage and bargain designer finds at charity shops. Drives me crazy! Funnily enough my daughter and partner found an old enamel kettle in a ruined house while on holiday and took it to show me. I had the most awful feeling it should be returned but said nothing. Sure enough ten minutes later they decided to take it back because they both felt it had to be placed in its original spot. My daughter was only ten at the time and still talks about the feeling she experienced to this day.

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