Printer-friendly version weekend vote: How did you purchase or obtain your instrument?

The Weekend Vote

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Published: January 26, 2014 at 10:59 PM [UTC]

A friend has fallen in love with a violin that has a rather high price tag.

I used to just laugh at the impossibility of buying a high-priced, fine fiddle. I couldn't afford it, and there you go. Then I fell in love with a fiddle. It was more than falling in love, it was a complete epiphany: a fine violin would change my life. Why was I spending all my life's energy on the violin, while not affording myself a violin that would really reflect my voice and allow me to grow?

I finally realized that I simply needed to find a way. And as the old saying goes: Where there's a will, there's a way. In my case, I was able to finance the purchase of my violin through the local musician's union's credit union.

There are other options: Maybe you can just buy it outright; or get it as a gift; finance it through a relative or home equity loan. Maybe you don't actually own your instrument; you borrow it from a collector, foundation or someone else.

I'm interested in gathering a lot of ideas, so that other people who are seeking a fine instrument can think of all their options and not just write it off as something that is impossible.

How did you obtain your violin?

From Kevin Keating
Posted on January 26, 2014 at 11:25 PM
Unlike other instruments I play that I've picked out on my own, I have yet to pick out my own violin. That being said, I have a beautiful instrument with a gorgeous tone that I love. My wife bought it for me for my 43rd birthday. It was also just 3 months before we got married so I consider it a wedding/engagement gift.

My wife does not play an instrument, however she made her choice based on what sounded best to her ear. The luthier played a few other instruments including a 19th century French violin and a Czechoslovakian violin form early 20th century, all within her price range. In the end she chose the 2008 Capri Maestro over the others.

My previous instrument was also a gift from her a couple Christmas' before though it was definitely a lesser instrument definitely designed for a beginner. So she has a good ear!

From Trevor Jennings
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 1:23 AM
My primary violin is a family inheritance, passed down through several generations from 1850. It is very probably late-18th c.
From Brent Hudson
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 2:14 AM
The dealer is carrying the paper on my CF Larsen, Odense, 1896.
From Patrick Tinney
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 3:51 AM
We needed to fix up our house so we could sell it.

I sold three guitars and bought carpet.

When we sold the house I bought the violin. It was under $2K, so not impossible if you sell a '61 Les Paul Junior. I miss the guitar a little, but I hardly used it. I use the violin as close to daily as I can.

Posted on January 27, 2014 at 7:34 AM
My mum's university friend's landlady found the violin in her loft and gave it to him who then gave it to my mum. I have been playing this violin since I was 12. It is a beautiful instrument and my teacher thinks it is French. This all happened approx 60 years ago. Check your lofts, it might be worth.
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 2:17 PM
I'm with Brent--and very grateful for the situation.
From elise stanley
Posted on January 27, 2014 at 5:07 PM
I suppose 'several of the above' fits - cash, credit and also the one big missing factor from the list: trading in the old one.

In case there are new-buyers reading this, I'm going to repeat a common comment that its a great idea to buy your violin from a shop with an excellent choice and a 10% trade-in policy. That's what I did with my last violin but this one - a life-timer - I had to go far afield and I bought it in a different store. Fortunately, they gave me not far off the price I paid for it in trade-in value - the new violin was almost twice as much and that was a deal-maker.

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