Searching for Collectibles
Two more styles of new hand-cranked outside horn phonographs have appeared. One has a round wooden base; the other has an octagonal wooden base. Both new phonographs have horns made entirely of brass.
A new black-faced Little Red Riding Hood cookie jar has been floating around in the market. The shape of the new jar imitates the original Little Red Riding Hood jar sold by Hull Pottery between 1943-1957. However, no vintage black-faced version of the Hull jar was ever produced. All black-faced jars in this style are new.
Very few categories of fakes and reproductions have shown the growth in numbers and improved manufacturing techniques as Halloween related objects. The rather crude lanterns and candy containers first reported nearly ten years ago have evolved into very carefully planned, well-made creations which are virtually exact copies of vintage originals.
There's a lot of new Halloween material offered in the online auction sites right now. Many pieces described as paper mache containers are not true paper mache at all. The majority of the piece are simply painted factory-made cardboard boxes or factory-made boxes with bits of crepe paper glued on.
A German firm has begun using original pre-1940 molds to reproduce paper mache candy containers and novelty figures. Reproductions have handpainted details and some amount of hand finishing. The new containers and figures are retail priced $30 - $75; comparable originals can sell for $150 - $500.
If mom thought Annie Oakley or Lone Ranger lunch boxes were too risqu, you may have carried a plaid box similar to the new one shown here. Original plaid metal boxes were made from the mid-1950s up until the early 1970s. Original manufacturers included Alladin Industries and Thermos. Old plaid boxes sell for $75-$100; new plaid boxes are currently retailing for $16. Almost all vintage boxes were made in the USA. The vast majority of new metal lunch boxes are made in China.
There are a number of plaster reproductions of RCAs Nipper in the market mistaken by many for vintage items. These items are in fact fantasy items, pieces with no old original counterpart. They are made in the Chicago, Illinois area primarily for sale to phonograph and record collectors. Although they are first sold openly as reproductions, many pieces cross into the antiques and collectible market where they are offered as old.
The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) is currently selling reproductions of a wide variety of classic 1950 products by many famous mid-century designers. Items range from Ray and Charles Eames side chairs to Isamu Noguchi coffee tables.
The lanterns show here are made of brightly colored cardboard. Eyes, mouths and other details are die-cut with tissue paper backing. A battery powered light shines through the die-cuts.
Theres an old saying that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will eventually believe it. That applies not only to words but also to reproductions of antiques and collectibles. Mickey Mouse pocket knife. Walt Disney.1933 Worlds Fair Chicago. Taylor Cutlery.