Thursday, August 28, 2014

Wow, Homer Laughlin made that?

The Homer Laughlin China Company of Newall, West Virginia opened for business in 1871.


From then to now, they have produced dinnerware (and even kitchenware), and many of the lines are still popular to this day.  Examples of these lines are Fiesta, Virginia Rose, Harlequin, Rhythm, Nautilus, Swing, Riviera, and even Century.

Collectible 1990s HOMER LAUGHLIN Cup And Saucer Pink With Aqua Trim Restaurant Wear EED-1 

Most of the dinnerware is marked by Homer Laughlin, so identifying a manufacturer is not a problem.  Some of it features the name of the pattern as well, which helps out a lot.  The HLC trademark is usually followed by a number series, the first two digits will indicate the year.  So if you do run across a Homer Laughlin piece that doesn't have the name of the pattern on it, you can most likely narrow it down with the year mark.

Vintage Homer Laughlin Company Red Fiesta Tea Coffee Barista Original Cup And Saucer Great For The Country Kitchen Or Mix And Match Setting 

I'm partial to the restaruantware that Homer Laughlin  made (a piece of it can be seen in the first two pictures).  I've always thought that with the piece being made for extra ware and tare, I don't have to be so delicate with it.

You can see all of the Homer Laughlin pieces in my Etsy shop here.  What kind of finds do you have in your collection?

Saturday, August 23, 2014

An egg cup for any collection

Egg cups lineage can be traced back to the ruins of Pompeii.  They have been made in every conceivable material (glass, ceramic, plastic, wood, rubber, metal, and many more).

Still being produced today, egg cups can range from inexpensive to big dollar prices.  What it was made of and if there is a pattern on the piece are only two for the factors that drive the price of it.

There are quite a few different categories that these fall into.  Art Deco, Black Memorabilia, Personalities (like a certain actor), Souvenir Ware (like advertising a city you have been to), and Staffordshireware are just a small portion that egg cups can fall into.

Those that date prior to 1840 are quite scarce, as are the character cups of the 1930's.

Do you happen to have a really cool example of an egg cup in your collection?

*image courtesy of

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Stamp Act Of 1765

Not too long ago, I heard about The Stamp Act Of 1765 on a local news report.  What in the world is this anyway?

The Stamp Act Of 1765 imposed a direct tax by the British Parliament specifically on the colonies of British America.  This tax required that many printed materials in the colonies be produced on stamped paper produced in London, which carried an embossed revenue stamp.

These printed materials were legal documents, magazines, playing cards, newspapers and many other types of paper used throughout the colonies. Like the previous taxes implemented, the stamp tax had to be paid in valid British currency, not in colonial paper money.  The reason that they didn’t want the colonial paper money was that it was known as “bills of credit” and could not be exchanges for gold or silver on demand.

But why did the British Parliament impose this act?

In short, The British victory in French and Indian War had been won only at a great financial cost. During the war, the British national debt nearly doubled.  They needed to raise money to help pay for the war that just ended and to pay for the soldiers that they had stationed in British America.

When April 1764 rolled around, Parliament announced when the Sugar Act was passed that they would also consider a stamp tax in the colonies (the Stamp Act passed 205–49 in the House of Commons and unanimously in the House of Lords).

So the money that was raised from this tax was earmarked to pay for British soldiers to protect the American colonies.

There was an eventual problem that the British Parliament crop up on them—the military rebellion of the original 13 colonies of the United States of America (one of the reasons the Revolutionary War was held was that America thought taxes like this one were unlawful).

The paper that is from this time is still very collectible, especially with the stamp still intact.  For a gift idea, you can look for pamphlets with the stamp for the paper lover or (even legal documents).

Have you come across one of these documents?

Sunday, August 17, 2014

COCA COLA collectibles

From its beginning in 1886, the Coca Cola Company has mounted a truly amazing advertising campaign (which is one of the most successful ever).

1914 Coca Cola Tip Tray With Picture Of Victorian Era Woman In Bonnet Or Hat

There's a ton of items.  Trays, calendars, signs (both paper and porcelain), playing cards, clocks, toys, radios, and even thermometers are just a small portion of what was made.  Many of the older items bring high dollars.

Vintage Advertising Plastic 1950s Coca Cola Sprite Boy Bottle Opener and Cap Catcher With Box

The wide range of advertising put out by Coca Cola yesterday--and even today--is mind blowing.  You can even use some of the items around the house.  Vintage display racks could be a book shelf.  A vending machine can dispense your favorite Coca Cola product.  A Coca Cola can could be a pencil holder on your desk (and it can be full of Coca Cola pens and pencils as well).

1944 Rum And Coca Cola Sheet Music Featured By the Andrews Sisters

There is literally something to be had for every collector--and even fit their price range.  You can find some really cool Coca Cola items in my Etsy shop here.

What kind of Coca Cola items have you found to display in your home?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Vintage pamphlets and booklets? There are things like that?

Vintage Advertising ALKA SELTZER Song Book 1937 Music Advertising Ephemera Songs Of the Era

A what? A pamphlet is a small, thin unbound printed publication with a paper cover having interior sheets that were either stapled or stitched together.  Most of these have somewhere between 4 to 16 pages.  Their topics usually focus on public interest topics of the time, and are often opinionated.

A booklet’s contents are largely informative rather than opinionated.  A booklet usually contains more than 16 pages, and has a more permanent quality.  They even find their ways to a personal library or on a shelf in a kitchen.

After WWII, because of the influence of television, the numbers of pamphlets and booklets have gone down.

Most of today’s collectors use the terms interchangeably.  More often than not, collectors even think that the ALKA SELTZER music book pictured above falls into the booklet or pamphlet category (or any other advertising like this, really).

You can find the ALKA SELTZER song book listed in my Etsy store, here.  What kinds of pamphlets or booklets have you run across that you cold not do without?

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Books for every collector!

Books are absolutely fun.  They can be full of recipe’s, information on any subject (wither it be on a person or historical event), and they can transport you to another place.  The list can go on and on.

The ways that you can collect books is another list that seems to go on a ways as well.

You can collect authors like Harold Bell Wright:

THEIR YESTERDAYS Book By Harold Bell Wright 1912 
 Or even Stephen King:

You can collect hardbacks, trade paperbacks, or even the cover art.  Another area to collect is cookbooks.

 Vintage 1972 Mary Cliffords WASHINGTON COOKBOOK First Edition 

Another great thing is that you can take them anywhere either as a physical copy or on an e-reader like a Nook or a Kindle.  You can click on the pictures that are shown here to see the actual listing on either eBay or etsy.

What kinds of books do you read?

Monday, August 4, 2014

Clothing and accessories for any occasion

In the field of collecting vintage and antique clothing, prices may vary enormously depending on where you are.  The Midwest and South often offer the best deals.

Vintage Handmade Childs Or Doll Dress With Belt Dotted Swiss 1950s 

Before 1940, everything was custom made--or hand made by the lady of the house.  Because of this, there will more likely not be a tag anywhere.  If you have a piece in mind that you want to buy, have a small tape measure in your pocket or purse to see what the measurements of the garment are.

Vintage 1920s gray Female Uniform Or Dress Clothes Work Prison Attire With Apron 

Today's young collectors have begun to search for still wearable 1950's to 1970's outfits.  They look for anything from dresses to shirts and neckties to wear.

 Vintage 1940s 1950s Ivory Satin Handmade Wedding Dress With Veil

Do your research--learn about construction techniques about construction techniques that would have been used in the garment you  have your eye on.  For instance, zippers were not commonly used until after 1935.

Sarah Coventry Gold Tone And Pearl Choker Or Collar Necklace And Earrings Suite Or Set 

Vintage Faux Fur Collar Mink Fashion 1940s Wardrobe Accessory

You can even accessorize that outfit just about any way that you can think of.  It could be a cool retro Sarah Coventry necklace, or a cool retro faux fur collar.

The great thing is, is that you can find a lot of great deals at flea markets and even second hand shops.

You can see all the clothing in my Etsy shop here, and you can see all the jewelry in my Etsy shop here.  You can even see some scarves here.

Have you run across any deals that have made their way to your closet?