Saturday, October 24, 2009

Going Ape Over Steiff Primates

It's no secret that Steiffgal, and apparently a number of Steifflife readers, are just ape about Steiff monkeys, especially Steiff Jocko chimpanzees. It's hard not to love their gentle, childlike expressions, delicate felt hands and feet, and posable bodies. And because of the nature of their design and manufacture, each one has a different look... making it impossible for the collector to ever say "I already have that one!"

However, Steiff also has produced a wide range of playful primates over the years that could also qualify as top bananas. Take a look at a few of these relatively recent monkeys that truly demonstrate Steiff's century long commitment to fabulous design, lifelike appearance, and creative use of materials!

This well coiffed critter is Steiff's Pavian Coco or Coco Baboon. Coco is 35 cm, five ways jointed, made from very thick silver mohair, and has a long bendable tail. Like Jocko, Coco has an airbrushed felt face and expressive deep set eyes in felt pockets. One of the things that makes this Coco one of the most distinctive animals in the entire Steiff catalog is his remarkable hair collar, which is made from mohair strands that are about 5 inches long! He does need a brushing every now and again to keep him untangled. Coco was produced from 1951 through 1961.

Moving from
long hair to long arms, the next featured Steiff monkey is a Gibbon. This long limbed lovely is unjointed and made from light brown mohair. His well detailed plush hands and feet are detailed with dark brown felt pads. His ears are tan felt and his plush face is highlighted by black and white googly eyes. Gibbon appeared in the Steiff catalog from 1962 through 1966 in two sizes: 20 and 40 cm.

Like his real life namesake, this gibbon has exceptionally long limbs; his arms are about t
wice the length of his body. In nature, gibbons use their arms to swing distances up to 50 feet at 35 miles per hour in trees sometimes 200 feet above the ground!

Orange you happy to learn more about Steiff monkeys? It that is the case, then next two selections will really make your day...

Here we have Steiff's Schlenker Orang or Cosy Orang. This 30 cm carrot-top cutie has a detailed plastic face and floppy dangling limbs. His body is made from long red-brown crylor (a man-made acrylic fiber which is also known as Orlon) and he has velvet-like hands. Unlike real orangutans, this crylor version does not have ears; thus, his earflag and button are sewn into a seam on his head. Cosy Orang was made from 1970 through 1974.

And finally, a true example of "monkey see, monkey do." This little eye catcher is Orang Utan Mimocculo Replica 1930. Mimocculo is 25 cm and made from rust brown mohair. His face, hands and feet are made from peach colored felt. He is five ways jointed and has a squeaker in his belly. He was produced in an edition size of 3,000 in 1998 and is a replica of a phenomenal item Steiff originally produced around 80 years ago.

What makes both the original and replica Mimocculos so unique are their moving eye features.
When you pull on this monkey's ear, his glass eyeballs move left and right, as well as up and down! The Mimocculo pattern was originally produced from 1930 through 1936 in 8, 10, 12, 14, 17, 22, 25, 28, 35, 43, and 50 cm; sizes from 17 cm had the distinctive rolling eye mechanism. Here's looking at you kid... literally!

Steiffgal hopes this quick tour was more fun then a barrel full of monkeys and that you too now have a greater appreciation for the wonderful range of Steiff primates.

Ape to learn more about one of your Steiff treasures? Let's talk! Click here to learn more.

1 comment:

  1. Jocko chimpanzees are so nice, I think that you have a great talent to make teddy!, so I would like to but one because my song love them!22dd


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