Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Standing Tall With Steiff

Like many folks across the United States, Steiffgal too was touched by the economic recession and lost her full time employment a few months ago due to tough industry conditions. However, she recently landed on her feet and is standing tall with a new job! To keep everyone on their toes over this joyous turn of events, let's take a look at some of the fantastic foot details Steiff has produced over the years!

Let's start off with Bigfoot he
re - literally. Here we have a larger than life (a whopping 125 cm) Steiff studio St. Bernard dog. Just for reference, he is lying across a 4 foot long coffee table and accompanied by one of Steiffgal's real-life Steiffpugs. St. Bernard is unjointed, made from brown and white woven fur, and is wearing a typically alpine dog collar detailed with floral studs. His airbrushed paws on his hands and feet are the size of a woman's hand with all fingers extended outward! This prehistoric sized pooch is so large that he has a custom, extra large, hand written yellow eartag accompanying his button-in-ear. "Bigfoot" was featured in the Steiff catalog from 1973 through 1983.

No need to walk on eggshells over the next featured foot item here. This is Steiff's 16 cm Huhn or hen. She is standing and made from mohair which has been gloriously airbrushed with black and tan detailing. She has a red felt comb and waddle, a tan felt face, and black felt tail feathers. And just check out those tootsies! Her gigantic yet playful tan felt feet are detailed with black airbrushing and are fully posable. Hen was manufactured from 1965 through 1976 and also came in a larger 25 cm size.

Steiffgal is hesitant to put her toe in the water over these fantastically footed finds. Yes, what you see here are "his and hers" Steiff armadillos. The bigger boy is 22 inches or 56 cm while his lady-friend is 20 inches or 50 cm. Add about 8 inches or 20 cm more to each to account for their long textured tails! Both are made from grey plush; the boy has a "crocodile skin" pattern to his body while the girl is more simply striped. Both have plastic pupil eyes, velvet lined ears, and five GYNORMOUS, white plush claws on each of their four feet.

What i
s really unusual about this pair, besides their "footnote worthy" feet, is the fact that they do not appear to be cataloged. Both have a gold button-in-ear and a very generic white split tape eartag, which dates them in the 1994 through 2000 time frame. Steiff did make a grey 40 cm armadillo in 1998 and a brown limited edition armadillo in 1995; perhaps these two are well-heeled cousins of the more familiar Steiff armored friends?

There is a popular song from 1985 by Katrina and The Waves called "Walking on Sunshine" (click here to see the video and be prepared to smile); this last Steiff selection could be the motivation behind this toe-tapping tune! Here we have Steiff's outrageously salmon-pink Caribbean Flamingo. This 42 cm sun-kissed sweetie has a mohair body and fully posable legs and neck. She has orange and black pupil eyes and magnificent detailing on her velvet-like beak and mile-long gams. And she a leg up on all of us: check out her lovely flat triangular webbed feet. Just perfect for catching the sand between her toes! Caribbean Flamingo was produced as a limited edition for North America in 2004.

Steiffgal would feel like a heel if you didn't get a kick out of this overview of some of Steiff's finer foot treatments!

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

1 comment:

  1. Just found your stuff while doing research on my collection of Steiff hand puppets.


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