Janell Berryman first began making papier mache clay pieces in 1997. She began selling her work on the Internet and soon built up a number of fans to her Pumpkinseed collection.
Ten years later her fan base continues to grow and her work now appears in a number of galleries.
Pictured right: Dracula – an original model made from papier mache
Her collection has now reached an international market with the Pumpkinseeds Folk Art reproduction line by ENESCO making high quality figures from Janell Berryman’s originals. The collection includes the most popular Halloween, Santa’s and Easter lines.
Pictured left: Sweet Pumpkin Ghoul – an original model made from papier mache
Each piece starts off as an armature then the building begins. After drying all the pieces and parts are sanded to a smooth texture in accordance with the piece. They are then carefully painted with full detail. Painted in high quality artist acrylics, sometimes sanded for a nice vintage look and appeal, stained, waxed and then sealed. All pieces come signed, dated and tagged with a small signature card.
Each original piece is unique. From start to finish it takes any where from 6 to 16 hours to create a model. Currently original models cost from $85.00 to $400.00.
Pictured right: ENESCO Pumpkins Raven Figurine
Janell Berryman says ‘My work comes with years of experience and tedious attention to detail. No pieces ever leave my studio without me knowing in my heart it was the absolute best I could have accomplished.’
Pictured left: ENESCO Pumpkin Child on Stump
Janell Berryman also produces original folk art and Halloween art paintings. The paintings use artist grade acrylics, and sealed with a top quality varnish.
Pictured right: Original paiting entitled ‘The Three Skellys’
More informat ion
Up until recently, male dolls were very few and far between, but over the last few years, as the trend for character dolls has grown, men have been making their presence felt – and how. Dolls are made to represent footballers, pop stars, sportsmen and even politicians. Here, though, we’re looking at the movie men, those who star on tv or in the films. Sometimes, like Indiana Jones, they are brave and fearless, others, such as Spiderman, are crime fighters in strange outfits, then there are the suave sophisticates; Henry Higgins, Rhett Butler. The fourth category falls to those inoffensive, often funny types – think Dick van Dyke, in Mary Poppins. A collection of male dolls, all testerone, trousers and teeth, makes a fun group, and might even prove a bit of an investment, certainly if you buy some of the cheaper types. If this sounds an odd theory, it’s really very simple – there are some wonderful versions of male dolls produced by designers such as Robert Tonner. However, these top of the range models are intended for collectors, who tend to keep them safe, and with their boxes. They are unlikely to undress them, let alone comb their hair or give them rides up the garden path on a skateboard – but the cheaper dolls intended for children will soon be unboxed, undressed and scuffed. These character dolls usually have quite a short shelf life because movies are constantly changing, and new heroes are produced. So in a few years time, if you resist temptation to debox your handsome hero, you may suddenly find he is demand. Perhaps the most modelled male film character has been Harry Potter; there are dozens of different types from small plastic figures through to expensive Robert Tonner versions. Many of these dolls featured in Dolls To Delight last October, so I won’t dwell on them here, but suffice to say that the Tonner types are stunning, while the large Gotz figures and many of the Mattel versions are very good, too. In a similar vein are the Ron Weasley and Draco Malfoy figures. Even so, with the best will in the world Harry Potter doesn’t really fall into the ‘handsome swash-buckling hero types’; for those we turn to characters such as swashbuckling Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom from ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ or adventurer Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones. The Tonner version of Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) features an elaborate costume, and the beading in the hair has been painstakingly reproduced. A much more affordable version, by Zizzle, was in the toy stores a couple of years ago as a 12 inch high doll. Although this one had moulded hair, the resemblance to the actor was amazing, and the costume still very intricate. Zizzle also made an Orlando Bloom as Will Turner, in a choice of outfits – either a ‘piratey-loo king’ red shirt, black waistcoat and black trousers, or a black leather outfit with a cream brocade waistcoat. Tonner, too, have depicted Will in his pirate outfit. A recent introduction is Hasbro’s Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones, as a talking version, with phrases such as ‘I think we’ve got a big problem’ and ‘That’s why they call it the jungle, sweetheart’. His mouth even moves as he speaks. Dressed in his typical leather jacket, coarse trousers and battered hat, this is a super doll and certainly one to look out for. Doctor Who, in his David Tennant reincarnation, is made by Character Options. Wearing a battered suit, he comes complete with, of course, his sonic screwdriver. This doll bears an excellent likeness to David. While we are on a space theme, there have been many Star Wars dolls (or ‘Action Figures’ as boys prefer to call them!) made over the years. In the 1980s a series of 12 inch high dolls were made by Palitoy, and are very collectable today; various others still appear from time to time. Likewise figures from ‘Babylon Five’, ‘Star Trek’ and similar cult sci-fi films, such as the Mego figures from the mid-seventies. Of course, you don’t have to be constantly warding off aliens, pirates, villains or dark forces to be a hero. You might be the suave and polished kind. Recently, Tonner created a Clark Gable doll in his role as Rhett Butler from ‘Gone With The Wind’, while in 1996 Mattel came up trumps with an excellent ‘enry ‘iggins as portrayed by Rex Harrison, from ‘My Fair Lady’. Dressed in his tweeds, Henry is depicted as the typical aristocratic gentleman. In contrast, we have Bert (Dick Van Dyke), who most certainly could have done with a few elocution lessons from Henry Higgins. The presentation of this recent doll from Mattel is most attractive – Bert is riding a carousel horse from the fairground scene in Mary Poppins. Very popular at the moment are the High School Musical dolls, and of course, Troy (Zac Efron) is included in the range by Mattel, and available in various outfits. John Travolta in his ‘Grease’ days was issued by Mattel a couple of years ago – but this was a mini-John, as modelled by Tommy, friend of Kelly, Barbie’s little sister. Barbie herself was depicted alongside James Bond in 2003. James has also appeared in Action Man special issues, though no attempt was made to capture any of the actors’ features, and more recently by Sideshow Collectables. More mystical are the ‘Lord of the Rings’ dolls. Characters such as Aragon have been expertly modelled by Applause and Toy Biz. Other fantasy figures include the comic book heroes; Batman, Superman, Spiderman – all of these have been produced in doll form, but I’m sure that most will have endured rough handling by their young owners, so pristine or boxed versions are certainly worth acquiring for your collection. That goes for ‘Thunderbirds’ dolls and Captain Scarlet too. Most heroes are handsome, or at least, reasonably presentable. If you want something a bit out of the ordinary though, then […]
Clarice Cliff is well known for her range of colourful pottery but she was also responsible for other items such as the Clarice Cliff Teddy Bear Bookends. The Teddy Bear bookends date from the 1930s and were sold in pairs and show a teddy bear sitting holding on to plinth with their legs in the air. The bears wear a ribbon collar and sport a fine bow. The bookends were produced in variations including differing colours of the bears, the ribbon & bows and most importantly the plinth. Patterns on plinths include Sunburst, Black Umbrella, and Blue W. A white bear and green bow are the most common set. Wedgwood re-issued the Clarice Cliff Teddy Bear bookends in a centenary limited edition of 150. The Bizarre bookends show the bears in the popular white form with green ribbon and bow. Clarice Cliff related A look at Clarice Cliff Clarice Cliff Cottage Bookends Clarice Cliff Bizarre Grotesque Masks by Ron Birks
Muffin the Mule was a puppet character on the British children’s television show For the Children that first aired on the BBC in 1946. The show featured a wooden puppet mule who would interact and dance along with human characters. Although the show was very popular with children, it also had an appeal for adults. The humour and wit of the show made it entertaining for all ages. Over the years, Muffin the Mule has become an iconic figure in British culture. He is often referenced in popular culture and has been featured in commercials, movies, and books. For many people, Muffin the Mule is a reminder of their childhood and a symbol of British culture. We take a brief look how Muffin the Mule was created and look at some of the Muffin the Mule collectables and Muffin the Mule merchandise over the years in this Collecting Muffin the Mule feature. The original Muffin the Mule puppet was created in 1933 by puppet maker Fred Tickner for puppeteers Jan Bussell and Ann Hogarth. Although we know him as Muffin, the puppet was originally unnamed. The puppet was part of a puppet circus made for the Hogarth Puppet Theatre. The couple had met while they were both working as puppeteers in London. They married in 1932 and decided to open their own puppet theatre. The original Muffin the Mule puppet was made from papier-mâché and had a wooden head. It was operated by two strings, one attached to each side of the head. Muffin was used for a short while but as Jan Bussell and Ann Hogarth moved on to more experimental and dramatic puppetry he was put away, re-appearing some 12 years later 1946. Bussell and Hogarth were working with presenter Annette Mills (sister of actor John Mills). Annette Mills named the puppet mule “Muffin”, and it first appeared on television in an edition of For the Children broadcast on 20 October 1946, where she performed as a singer, pianist and story teller. She wrote the songs and the music, including Muffin’s popular signature theme song “We Want Muffin! (Muffin The Mule)”, some of which appeared Muffin the Mule songbooks, as well as making records. Ann Hogarth wrote the scripts for the series. The show ran on the BBC until 1955 when Annette Mills died. During the show Muffin the Mule used to clip-clop and dance around on top of a piano which was being played by Annette Mills. Annette and Muffin would interact and the show appealed to not only children but to adults as well. Other characters were later added to the show including Prudence the Kitten (who went on to have her own show), Mr Peregrine the Penguin, Sally the Sea-Lion, Louise the Lamb, Oswald the Ostrich, and Morris and Doris the field mice. As Muffin the Mule’s popularity grew a range of merchandising, toys and comics were created mainly on Muffin but a few products were created featuring other characters. Lesney created a die-cast movable puppet which according the Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh was “the first toy to be marketed under licence as a result of a successful TV appearances”. Other items include Toy Television Sets, a Muffin the Mule Pelham Puppet, games, Metal figures by Argosy Toys, licensed pottery, tins and much more.
200 years of Frankenstein books, collectables and toys With the 200th Anniversary of the publication of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, what better time than to look the work that still inspires new editions, collectables and toys. Authored by Mary Shelley (30 August 1797 – 1 February 1851) when she was just 19 years old, Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus was first published in London in 1818 to a mixed reception. Frankenstein tells the story of gifted scientist Victor Frankenstein who succeeds in giving life to a being of his own creation. However, this is not the perfect specimen he imagines that it will be, but rather a hideous creature who is rejected by Victor and mankind in general. The Monster seeks its revenge through murder and terror. The book is much more complex than the modern re-workings and films that most of us know the story through and is Number 8 in The Guardians Top 100 Best Novels. The first edition of Frankenstein was published in three volumes on New Year’s Day 1818, anonymously and dedicated to William Godwin. The Shelley’s Ghost exhibition at the Bodleian says of the book “According to When Shelley sent the fair copy manuscript of the novel to the publishers, Shelley made clear that it was not his work, but did not reveal who the author was: ‘I ought to have mentioned that the novel which I sent you is not my own production, but that of a friend who not being at present in England cannot make the correction you suggest. As to any mere inaccuracies of language I should feel myself authorized to amend them when revising proofs.’ Nevertheless, when they saw the dedication to Godwin some readers, including Sir Walter Scott, speculated that Shelley was the author.” (Details of the Shelley’s Ghost exhibition are still available online and includes information on not only Mary Shelley and her drafts of Frankenstein but also Percy Bysshe Shelley, William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft – visit https://shelleysghost.bodleian.ox.ac.uk for more details). The first edition of 1818 was issued in an edition of just 500. A second edition appeared in 1822 to cash in on the success of a stage version, Presumption. A third edition, extensively revised, came out in 1831. For collectors the ultimate would be a first edition but this is one of rarest and most valuable books. Very few Frankenstein first editions come to market: a rebound first edition sold for $58,000 in April 2017 at Heritage Auctions. The most exciting edition to come to market was an edition actually inscribed to Lord Byron himself. The edition was presented to market by Peter Harrington Rare Books – the exact sale price is unknown but expected to be in excess of £350,000. Early editions of the book are sort after especially the third edition in October 1831 which included a new 8-page introduction by the author, and was issued with the first part of Schiller’s The Ghost-Seer! as volume 9 of Bentley’s ‘Standard Novels’. This was also the first single edition as well as the first illustrated edition. A very good clean copy was sold by Forum Auctions in May 2017 for £2,600. For many people the Frankenstein that they recognise is from the 1931 film of the same name, where Boris Karloff played the monster. The Frankenstein horror monster film from Universal Pictures was directed by James Whale and adapted from the play by Peggy Webling. The movie stars Colin Clive, Mae Clarke, John Boles and Karloff, and features Dwight Frye and Edward van Sloan. The Webling play was adapted by John L. Balderston and the screenplay written by Francis Edward Faragoh and Garrett Fort with uncredited contributions from Robert Florey and John Russell. The make-up artist was Jack Pierce. A hit with both audiences and critics, the film was followed by multiple sequels and has become arguably the most iconic horror film in history. The iconic posters and lobby cards from the movie are amongst the most collectable and expensive of all the Frankenstein items. In 2015 the most valuable Frankenstein movie poster ever sold at public auction by Heritage Auctions. The poster was found in a long closed and boarded-up projection booth in a Long Island theater and is the only 6-foot example from the 1931 Universal horror classic known to exist. The poster sold for an amazing $358,000 (click for more details on the poster). The same company also sold another rare 1931 Frankenstein poster for $262,900 (click for more details on the poster). Although the 1931 movie version of Frankenstein is iconic one that most merchandise and collectables are based on, the first Frankenstein film adaptation was made by Edison Studios in 1910 and written and directed by J. Searle Dawley, with Charles Ogle as the Monster. The brief (16 min.) story has Frankenstein chemically create his creature in a vat. The monster haunts the scientist until Frankenstein’s wedding night, when true love causes the creature to vanish. For many years, this film was believed lost. The Edison version was followed soon after by another adaptation entitled Life Without Soul (1915), directed by Joseph W. Smiley, starring William A. Cohill as Dr. William Frawley, a modern-day Frankenstein who creates a soulless man, played to much critical praise by Percy Standing, who wore little make-up in the role. The film was shot at various locations around the United States, and reputedly featured much spectacle. In the end, it turns out that a young man has dreamed the events of the film after falling asleep reading Mary Shelley’s novel. This film is now considered a lost film. There was also at least one European film version, the Italian Il Mostro di Frankenstein (“The Monster of Frankenstein”) in 1921. The film’s producer Luciano Albertini essayed the role of Frankenstein, with the creature being played by Umberto Guarracino, and Eugenio Testa directing from a screenplay by Giovanni Drivetti. The film is also now considered a lost film. (Source Wikipedia). Frankenstein has featured in hundreds of films since 1931. My favourites would be those featuring Abbot t and Costello and the films by Hammer. The Frankenstein Hammer films included The Curse of […]
Antique Typewriters Collecting antique typewriters has really come of age in the last twenty years, as the appreciation of antique machines has grown in our technological times of smooth cases and blinking lights. There were a few typewriter collectors fifty years ago but they could have been counted on one hand. Pictured left: Odell 2 ~ Chicago, 1890 This attractive index typewriter is nickel plated with an Art Nouveau styled base. Today there are over 500 typewriter collectors spread around the world. The largest group of collectors are found in the US and Germany, but there is strong interest throughout Europe, especially in Italy, France, Spain, and Switzerland. Most typewriter collectors seek machines from the 1880s and 1890s, the first twenty years of typewriter manufacturing, a time when the fundamental design of the ‘modern’ typewriter had yet to be discovered. During this time there was a major effort by many pioneering machinists and engineers to create a viable typewriter for a world that was ready for this revolutionary machine. There are perhaps 400 different models to collect from this age of experimentation. These typewriters were manufactured in many industrialized countries, in particular the US, England, and Germany. Today, the values of these machines are affected by condition, rarity, and desirability. With prices ranging from a few hundred dollars, to into the thousands for the rare machines. However, for those interested in acquiring an early typewriter at a modest price, there are a number of intriguing and historically important typewriters that can be had for a few hundred dollars, including the Blickensderfer ($150 to $250), Hammond ($150 to $500), and Odell ($400 to $600). Ebay is a good place to look for these and others – click to view Antique Typewriters on ebay. By 1910 the design of most typewriters had become standardized as a result of the emergence of the ubiquitous and brilliant Underwood 1, which appeared in 1897. All typewriters from now on, right up to the invention of the personal computer in the early 1980s, would ostensibly have the same look and function as the Underwood, the age of experimentation was over. An early and unique American typewriter goes to the auction block This November, a very special typewriter went for auction in Germany. It was the typewriter of US inventor Abner Peeler. His very strange typing machine was made in 1866 and is one of the very first typewriters to ever be made. This typewriter was not manufactured though and only one example is known to exist. Mr. Peeler also has the distinction of mailing the first typed letter in the US, which was sent on June 19, 1866. Pictured right: Commercial Visible ~ New York, N.Y., 1898 This attractive machine types from a type wheel, that is easy to remove, allowing for a quick change of font. To make an impression, a spring-loaded hammer behind the carriage swings forward, striking the paper and ribbon against the type wheel. The letter begins “Dear Companion, We are both well. I feel splendid. I am now in the office of Chipman & Co . The machine has been examined by a great may shrewd men and they think it is the greatest curiosity of the age. They also think it is of great value.” The ‘shrewd men’ were right but it would not be his machine that would herald in the age of the typewriter; that would be a few years later in 1874 when the American printer Christopher Lathem Sholes had his very functional typewriter, the Sholes & Glidden, manufactured by Remington & Sons. Mr. Peeler also created the very first airbrush machine and his impressive self-portrait, from a photo, is the first airbrush picture in history. One can read more about the Peeler collection and see his typewriter and self-portrait at www.abnerpeeler.com. The first typewriters ~ a brief history The keyboard provides an essential means for one to communicate and is used by more people today then ever before. Keyboards are arguably one of the most important tools in the world, a tool that represents our personal communication in this technological age. The keyboard truly connects the planet. But what did the first keyboards and typewriters look like and how did they evolve? Typewriters from the 1930s and 40s all look pretty much the same, they “look like a typewriter”. With four rows of straight keys, single shift and front strike visible (type-bars hit the front of the roller allowing one to see what they have just typed). Typewriters have not always looked like this though. Just imagine if you, never having seen a typing machine, were asked to design one. How might it look? In fact, the standard big, black machines that you might be familiar with such the Underwood and Remington were the result of many years of mechanical evolution. Pictured right: Caligraph 2 ~ New York, N.Y., 1882 With no shift key on this typewriter, there are twice as many keys as a normal keyboard; black keys are for capitals and white keys are for lower case. During these early years of discovery, ingenuity and mistakes, over four hundred different typing machines were produced to print the written word. Among them were machines with curved keyboards, double keyboards or no keyboards at all! The first typewriter patent was issued to an English engineer, Henry Mill in 1714. He outlined the concept of the typewriter when he registered a patent for ‘an artificial machine for impressing letters one after another, as in writing, whereby all writings may be engrossed in paper or parchment, so neat and exact as not to be distinguished from print.’ However, this machine was never made. Many experimental typewriters were built and used during the first 75 years of the nineteenth century but none were produced in quantity. This was about to change though, as the technology for mass production had arrived and the need for fast, accurate business communication was growing. What was needed was a person to bring together all […]
The wonderful Beswick Butterfly Plaques are quite rare and were produced from 1957 to 1963 and were all designed by Albert Hallam. We take a look at these colourful creations with a price guide of sales at auction. There are thought to be nine designs and were made in large, medium and small sizes. Each Beswick Butterfly Plaque had a model number from 1487 to 1495. The model name and number is on the reverse of each butterfly plaque. The wire antennae on the butterflies are quite fragile so complete examples in perfect condition can fetch a premium. List of Butterfly plaques with their model number: 1487 Purple Emperor Butterfly 1488 Red Admiral Butterfly 1489 Peacock Butterfly 1490 Clouded Yellow Butterfly 1491 Tortoiseshell Butterfly 1492 Swallow-tail Butterfly 1493 Small Copper Butterfly 1494 Purple Hairstreak Butterfly 1495 Small Heath Butterfly Beswick Butterfly Plaques Price Guide The collection of butterfly models by Albert Hallam are a rarity among Beswick and most modern collectables in that the prices are stable and rising. The prices for most butterflies are more than during the 1990s when many collectables peaked. Typical prices at auction are shown under each butterfly pictured. A great series and one that looks to be a long term investment.
Queen Elizabeth II will celebrate her Diamond Jubilee in 2012. To mark 60 years of The Queen’s reign the Diamond Jubilee celebrations will centre around an extended weekend in 2012 on 2, 3, 4 and 5 June. Pictured right: A selection of Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Collectables As with many Royal events collectable companies, gift producers and memorabilia makers have been working over time to produce a wide range of collectables for collectors. World Collectors Net takes a look at some gifts on offer. Lilliput Lane Lilliput Lane has taken the opportunity of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee to revitalize their popular Britain’s Heritage™ collection to incorporate Jubilee celebrations. The four Jubilee pieces are: Jubilee Tower Bridge, Jubilee Big Ben, Jubilee Tower of London and Jubilee at Windsor Round Tower. Pictured right: Jubilee at the Crown Inn and Jubilee at the Windsor Round Tower These iconic landmarks have been adorned with bunting, flags, gems and a commemorative plaque. All of these superb miniatures of our finest buildings will only be available during 2012 and are produced in a Limited Edition of 2,012 pieces each. Another special cottage has been produced to celebrate Her Majesty’s sixty-year reign, again only available during 2012. Picked for its name, The Crown Inn — a delightful eighteenth-century pub from St Ewe, Cornwall — has inspired the 2012 Anniversary Cottage, Jubilee at The Crown Inn. Caverswall English Fine Bone China Caverswall China was founded in 1973 and is starting to gain an excellent reputation for its Commemorative Ware. In 2011 they produced a number of pieces for the Royal Wedding of HRH Prince William and Catherine Middleton. Pictured right: A selection of Caverswall China celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee For the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Caverswall China have created a 10″ plate, 8″ coupe, Edinburgh Mug, 3″ round box, 4″ round sweet dish, a lionhead beaker and an excellent Durham Vase. Border Fine Arts Border Fine Arts have introduced three models featuring the Queen. As with all Border Fine Arts models their is great attention to detail and the models show the Queen at various times during her reign including Trooping the Colour in 1952, Newly Crowned in 1953 and the Her Majesty at Balmoral. Pictured left: Trooping the Colour 1952 – Celebrating the Queen’s sixty-year reign, the figurine depicts Her Majesty at the Trooping the Colour parade of 1952, her first as Sovereign. Wearing the scarlet tunic of the Colonel-in-Chief of the Scots Guards and the blue ribbon of the Order of the Garter, Her Majesty is elegantly poised on her chestnut horse, Winston. The black plume on her tricorn hat is in remembrance of her father, His Majesty King George VI, who died four months previously. Pictured right: Her Majesty at Balmoral – This delightful figurine depicts Her Majesty in a relaxed pose at the Balmoral Estate, where she can unwind and enjoy some of her favourite things. Here, her beloved corgis are never far from her side and many have been recorded on what can only be considered some of the most endearing photographs ever taken of the Queen. Tiny is on her knee and Brush is at her feet. Caithness Glass Caithness Glass have produced a number of editions including the fabulous Limited Edition Elizabeth Rose Garland paperweight (Pink and red roses with entwined stems sit alongside sprigs of myrtle in this diamond shaped weight) and Magnum paperweight (Shimmering sand and dichroic shards of glass to form the internal design inside this magnum sized paperweight). Pictured left and right: Elizabeth Rose Garland Limited Edition Paperweight and Magnum – Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Limited Edition Paperweight Also available is the Crown paperweight, Rose paperweight, Elizabeth Rose Garland paperweight, Coat of Arms paperweight, Sand Rose paperweight and Penny Black Sandcast paperweight. Carters Teapots Tony Carter the UK’s leading teapot designer and created two new teapots and two new mugs for the event. The teapots include the Heart Diamond Jubilee Teapot and Diamond Jubilee Flag Teapot. Pictured left and right: Tony Carter’s Diamond Jubilee Flag Teapot and the Heart Diamond Jubilee Teapot The pottery is known as one of England’s leading makers of handmade collectable teapots, supplying shops and stores throughout the UK with over 70% of the pottery/output exported throughout the world. Each collectable teapot is cast and painted by hand, resulting in no two teapots being exactly the same.
Collecting Communion Tokens and small Communion Tokens price guide. Communion tokens were round or oval in shape, and they were given to individuals who took communion in churches during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Presbyterian worship in Scotland is particularly associated with them, but they may also be found in England, the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland. The Communion tokens were used to identify those who were entitled to receive Communion. The minister would give the person a token before giving them Communion. When Communion was being given, the individual would show the token to the Communion steward. There are a number of reasons why communion tokens were used. First, communion tokens ensured that only those who were members of the church and who had been properly instructed in the faith were able to receive Communion. This was important because Communion is a sacred act in which Christians partake of the body and blood of Christ. Second, communion tokens helped to prevent Communion from being taken by those who might not appreciate its significance or who might abuse it in some way. Finally, communion tokens served as a tangible reminder of an individual’s commitment to the Christian faith. Though communion tokens fell out of use in the 18th century, they remain an important part of Protestant and Calvinist history. Communion tokens remind us of the importance of maintaining a proper understanding of Communion and of our commitment to the Christian faith. They were also used as a means of identifying Communion members who had been away from the church for a period of time. They were also given to children when they were first admitted to communion. Often, these tokens would be made of metal or other durable materials and would be worn around the neck or on a keychain. The most common materials were metal, wood, and bone. In some cases, Communion Tokens were also made of other materials such as stone or glass. They could have holes in the centre and so could be strung together. Tokens were often engraved with a Christian symbol or the initials of the person who received the Communion Token. Communion tokens were collectibles even back then and people would try to get as many different ones as possible. There are many different types of communion tokens that can be found. Some have biblical scenes or symbols on them, while others have the name of the church or the year they were made. Messages on tokens would include biblical quotes such as ‘This Do In Remembrance of Me’ and ‘Let A Man Examine Himself’. Today, they are still collected by some people as a hobby and for the most part can be acquired fairly inexpensively.
Recently, a friend said, ‘I’d like to collect dolls. But there are lots of different kinds. How do I start and what are the best to buy?’ This really had me thinking; it’s a difficult query to reply to as there’s no easy answer. The first thing to establish is why my friend wants to collect – if it’s for investment purposes, my reply will be, “Don’t!” That isn’t to say there is no money to be made in the doll collecting world – a lady I know must be rubbing her hands with glee at the moment having just sold a mint in box Pedigree doll (which originally cost £5) for over £650! While anyone who still owns their childhood Blythe doll could, with a bit of luck, be sitting on a nice little earner of £500 upwards. I’m sure that if you ask Kathy Martin which bears to collect, Mark Hill which glass to collect or Tracy Martin which handbags to collect, they will all tell you the same – “Buy those which you really love (as long as you can afford them!).” There is no point in buying items which you dislike purely because they might possibly rise in value in ten years time – after all, you have to live with them until then. If you invest in an ultra rare, mint, perfect doll, but it happens to be one of those types which scares you even before you placed your bid, well, yes, you might possibly make a profit in a few years – but in the meantime, you’ll have turned into a nervous wreck, with the doll haunting your dreams and scaring all your friends away! Stick with what appeals to you, and you’ll be fine. What if you decide you want to collect the kind of dolls you like, but the trouble is, you like them all? Well, firstly, welcome to the club, most doll collectors face this exact dilemma! Sometimes you can narrow it down a bit. Maybe, fashion is your thing and the new fashion dolls, especially those by the American designers such as Tonner, will fit the bill. There are many ranges of exquisite dolls to choose from, whether you decide to go for the 1940s look as worn by Mel Odom’s Gene, 1950s chic encapsulated in such dolls as Tonner’s Kitty Collier, 1960s zany styles as demonstrated by the new Doug James range of Gabby and Violet teens, or ballet and theatrical glamour found in the stunning range by Clea Bella. All of these dolls are worth checking out by fashion fans. If, however, your fashion tastes are more simple, then you might prefer to begin your collection by seeking out old Sindy, Barbie, Daisy, Tressy and Tammy dolls. All of these have their fans, and it is still relatively easy to pick up good examples without laying out too much money – a Sindy, for example, in her original Weekenders outfit, or a Quant Daisy wearing her trendy Bees Knees get-up, can be bought for the price of a meal out. Barbie and Sindy are still being made, so you could add some you really like to your collection just by popping along to your local toy shop. Maybe, though, it’s the older dolls which really appeal to you – it must be said that some of the bisque dolls from the 1920s and before are stunningly beautiful, with large glass eyes, creamy smooth porcelain cheeks and rosebud mouths. To me, it is a really special feeling to hold one of these old dolls, to imagine the children who played with her and the history they witnessed, a nd, especially, to marvel at the way a china doll which has been loved and played with by generations of children, can still be so fresh and perfect. Antique dolls are often expensive – yet, some modern dolls can cost just as much, if not more. If you are hoping to collect antique dolls, now is a very good time to buy. At present, many of the more commonly-found old dolls have dropped in price, possibly due to an influx on the market as elderly owners decide to part with their possessions; look out for makers such as Armand Marseille, Ernst Heubach, Simon & Halbig and Schoenau & Hoffmeister, all of whom made delightful and popular dolls. At present it is possible to buy a reasonable antique doll in good condition for around £150 from a dealer or fair. I would never recommend that you buy any antique doll without inspecting it first, unless the seller is someone known to you who you trust implicitly. When you find an antique doll which you really love, ask the seller if there are any cracks, including hairlines, chips or other damage (normally this should have already been noted on the tag attached to the doll). Check to see whether the wig is original (a replacement isn’t necessarily a problem, as long as it isn’t a modern nylon wig), and ask if you can remove some of the clothing to check the condition of the body. Sometimes you will find there are scuffed toes or missing fingers; most collectors are not overly concerned with minor play damage such as this, and some will accept a hairline crack if it doesn’t detract from the doll’s beauty. Antique dolls aren’t always made from china, there are some very beautiful wax dolls about. Many people dislike wax dolls as they find the wax likeness to human skin rather creepy for comfort, while often the faces tend to craze which can give them a sinister air. Anther reason they are out of favour is because they can dry out in modern centrally-heated homes. Nevertheless, wax dolls can be very pretty, and often not particularly expensive. With a little care, they can make an excellent and interesting collection, as can celluloid dolls, which, though prone to dents, and which, being inflammable, mustn’t be put near a naked […]
The opening of Disneyland in Anaheim, California in 1955 opened the door to worldwide recognition of Hagen-Renaker’s craftsmanship. By the Fall of 1955, the first of the Hagen-Renaker “Disney” pieces were released. Walt Disney is quoted as saying, “they made the finest three-dimensional reproductions of the drawings he ever saw”. In the ensuing years, until 1965 or 1966, the “Disney series” was expanded to include most of the leading characters from “ Lady and the Tramp”, ,“Alice in Wonderland”, “Cinderella”, “Bambi”, “Dumbo”, “Pinocchio”, “Snow White”, and “ Mickey Mouse and Friends”. In 1982 a second series of Hagen-Renaker “Disney” pieces were introduced based upon “Fantasia”. Fantasia just happens to be one of John Renaker’s favorites. These were the last of the figurines that Hagen- Renaker did specifically for Disney, although for years, their standard Miniatures were featured in the Emporium and other shops at Disneyland. The Hagen-Renaker “Disney” pieces were both miniatures, i.e., 1” to 2”, or a larger series, 3” to 6” in size. Today all pieces are prized by collectors of Disney and command prices several hundreds of dollars over their original cost. The Disney experience carried over in the evolution of the Hagen-Renaker line. Many new miniatures, expressing the whimsical nature of animated cartoons such as Disney’s, began to find their way into the line. Circus sets, bug bands, and animals dancing, just to name a few. And if look closely at the line today, you’ll notice a marked resemblance to “Thumper” in Brother Rabbit, and both of their small deer, lying or standing, definitely remind you of “Bambi”. Care has been taken, however, not to violate any licensing of copyright with any of the Hagen-Renaker line, but once you like something it’s hard to completely erase it from your creative vision. Hagen-Renaker Related Hagen-Renaker Information