Saturday, January 27, 2024

"Terror in the Night"

Time to check in with gorgeous girl detective, Lucky Dale, as she sets sail on the high seas of action 'n adventure! She's one tough lil cookie, and wearing a red dress that seriously seems to have a mind of its own! You'll see what I mean as this early Warren Kramer (really?!) classic thrills, chills, and probably even titillates you with an over abundance of revealing good girl art, plus some hilarious tough guy dialogue too. From Avon's The Saint #4, published in 1948.

Monday, January 22, 2024

Amy Paper Doll

The other day I found one of the many interesting toys (un-used even) created for young girls during the Carter Administration-- it's, the Amy (Carter) Paper Doll (1977), which to me sort of has a 70's underground comic vibe in not only the colorful box art design, but even in Amy herself, (that smile on her face harkens a bit to a certain Devil Girl by R. Crumb!) And yes, you'd be as surprised as me if you knew this cute lil thing even existed, let alone the other toys created in her image (google the astounding Amy Carter Love Doll from 1978 by Tom McPartland, for example!) They really played up the "Peanut Power" angle with this paper doll though, (I was barely a pre-teen during this era but I'll never forget that slogan), highlighted by a nutty, toothy peanut mascot among the other groovy 70's clothing choices to dress her up in. So what'll it be? A sailor? A dutch girl? The president's funkadelic daughter? "Hours of fun" it says right there on the lid...

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Thursday, January 18, 2024

Vintage Venus Countertop Corset Mannequin

It's not every day that one of these beautiful, 1940's countertop mannequins show up around these parts, but I'm sure glad I was in the right place and at the right time when one did! Venus is a shapely, 30" tall female display mannequin statue, and fashionably posed to model actual miniature versions of Venus brand products made of real fabric (in this case a skin-tone corset, see photo close-ups towards the end of this post below.) Her overall body form is composed of a molded Rubberlite material, hence the extensive cracking all over, likely from years of sun and heat exposure in store front windows, as well as other various destructive display and storage elements. Her base is even a little warped as if at one point she was possibly melting sideways (!!), and as you can see, a previous owner attempted to fix her by adding a slanted piece of wood underneath said base. It sort of works. Sort of. Anyway, a few of my friends believe that her cracking condition gives her extra story and character. I think it sort of makes her look like she's carved out of wood, and when I initially set eyes upon her at the antique mall, I imagined a much more attractive mash-up between the mounted ship figurehead of Hera from Jason and the Argonauts (1963), with the living wooden figurehead from The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973.) Check out another va-va-va-version of Venus from a 2017 auction site, by CLICKING HERE!

Monday, January 15, 2024

Hail Satyr!

I found another great, late nouveau era match safe this week (my third this year!), and as much as I'd like to believe that it's Satan, it is obviously more along the lines of a satyr, probably even The Great God Pan himself (see his curled ram horns, cluster of grapes, and flowers in his hair.) Made of heavy duty cast iron, he's an imposing face of freaky fertility glaring down from the wall. And though meant to be mounted by a fireplace (because it's a match safe after all), I think he compliments my framed antique print of the ever fertile "Enchantress" by Rolf Armstrong a bit better, --and I especially love the shadowy lighting and highlight assist from my office lamp below...

Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Judge Not the World Through a Key-Hole

Deep dive through a big box of very old paper items, and found this clever antique greeting card. I'm so glad I also found the missing corner which had broken off at some point, and that I could repair it too! A die-cut AND textured piece of vintage ephemera-- what a score! And fyi: nobody is judging anybody for thinking what they thought they initially saw / thought through the key-hole!

Saturday, January 6, 2024

A Little Mourning for Leo and Ida

I found some interesting things around the end of 2023, one being a small-scale salesman sample of a tombstone made from a solid hunk of granite. And yes, it weighs a ton too! Why carry around the full-size versions while trudging door-to-door back in the day? There's definitely no need to send yourself to an early, backbreaking grave! They did this with highly detailed, doll-sized caskets and even mini vaults as well. They're very pricey, and quite collectable too. I also found an incredible assortment of deco era bisque figurines at a local estate sale. I'll be showing you more of these in upcoming posts as well, but for now here's one of them, a 1920's flapper with spit curled hair. Her head is a separate piece held on by a tiny strand of string so that her noggin can do a little bobbin' (some of you might remember the Smitty bisque nodder I posted HERE back in 2020.) Anyway, the funny thing about both of these finds was when I put them together on my desk: I set the flapper upright in front of the mini headstone, and then stepped back to take a few pix. As I zoomed everything into focus, her tiny head slowly tilted forward / down ON ITS OWN, into a sad mourning position. I'd be lying if I said that a chilly breeze suddenly blew through my office, and I will admit honestly that I still felt a slight tingle go right up my Karswellian spine. Of course, it's possible that she just knew little 'ol Leo and itty-bitty Ida. I guess we'll never know...

Wednesday, January 3, 2024

Hallmark Holly Paper Party Dress '67

Last summer I posted about a 1960's paper dress (HERE!) and presto, here's another one! And I found it just in time to forget about posting it for the holidays, unfortunately, as we not only had covid invade our home, but also a family member passed away after a very long struggle with a completely different illness. So here it is, over a week later finally, beautifully packaged with a super illustration and die-cut window, and never worn too-- the Hallmark Holly Paper Party Dress! Maybe I'll shed a few pounds over 2024 and model it for you all next holiday season.