Friday, October 22, 2010

High Bids for Vintage Halloween

This black cat, a candy container, brought $1,725 at Morphy Auctions.

Found this article and wanted to share. To those of us who are creating todays Halloween items, perhaps our work will someday command prices like these!

Antiques: Vintage Halloween collectibles can be scary valuable

By Karla Klein Albertson
Inquirer Antiques Columnist

Past or present, decorating with grinning jack-o'-lanterns, spooky black cats, and flying witches is the best part of Halloween.
In the final months of 2010, antique toy collectors will be bidding on a dazzling selection of holiday offerings. The list includes something for everyone: vintage Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas decorations, as well as cast-iron banks, old cars of every description, and, of course, regiments of toy soldiers.
Philadelphia is at the center of the toy-collecting world. Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pa., near Lancaster, stirred up the spirits of the season when it had excellent results with Halloween material in an 887-lot Holiday Sale on Sept. 11.
Old Halloween decorations have increased in value because so few survive in good condition. Candy containers and colorful cutouts made of fragile materials often were discarded after each holiday.
Spooky lanterns designed to hold a candle were often made of flammable papier-mache or pressed cardboard. No surprise, a near-mint-condition devil's-head lantern from Germany brought $4,600 at the Morphy sale. Another unusual lantern in the shape of a human foot with a happy face on the sole sold for a hefty $10,350.
The top-selling item in the auction was a one-of-a-kind Halloween harvest novelty, also made in Germany. Probably a store display, the 17½-inch "veggie man" had a clockwork mechanism that shifted his eyes from side to side. The final price: $19,550.
Another standout lot was a very rare set of nodding figures with cat, devil, witch, and pumpkin heads, which sold for $10,350. "It's difficult to find a complete set of six," Dan Morphy said.
"They're made of celluloid, so they're fragile. This particular set was old store stock and had never been used. Remarkably, it was still in its original box with original paper label."
As this was an official "holiday" sale, the offerings included desirable Christmas Santa figures, candy containers, and ornaments. A 28-inch-tall Santa with clockwork nodding head and rabbit-fur beard was purchased for $10,350.

A Santa with sleigh and four reindeer was offered for purchase as a store display in the Schoenhut catalog for 1914. The rare group, featured in Schoenhut Dolls: A Collector's Encyclopedia by Carol Corson, sold for $5,750.
"The turnout for this sale definitely proved that Halloween and Christmas antiques are popular year-round collectibles," Morphy said. "We had more than 250 unique buyers, with approximately 100 of them bidding in the room and another 150 on the phones at various times during the session."
He said the sale also drew about 400 Internet bidders.

This link will provide more information and photos on other upcoming auctions! There's one coming to New Hope that I'm thinking about attending!


LuLu Kellogg said...

This was very interesting!

It's COLD here and I am ready for apple cider and an outside fire! I hope you and your sweet husband have a wonderful weekend!


Carolee said...

Great article - thanks for sharing it. Morphy is about five minutes from me - must check out one of their Halloween auctions some time!