Sunday, October 21, 2012

Steiffgal's 3 Wishes For The Upcoming Teddy Dorado Auction

So, if you could have three Steiff wishes, what would they be?  Steiffgal knows that's a really hard question, and would have trouble answering it herself.  But it's certainly easy to dream big when it comes to Steiff auctions!   And, many of the lots at the upcoming Teddy Dorado auction on October 27th, 2012 offer plenty of opportunity for happy thoughts!  You can check out the event's online catalog by clicking here... but be forewarned that you just may fall in love with a treasure or two (or more!)  Take a look at Steiffgal's bronze, silver, and gold picks for this upcoming Steiff auction... and what makes them so interesting from a design and historical perspective.

Steiffgal's bronze medal choice makes her want to shake, rattle, and roll.  Here we have an adorable Steiff rattle bear in like new condition.  This tiny Ted is 10.5 cm sitting, 13.5 cm standing, five ways jointed, and made from white mohair.  Her face is detailed with black glass eyes and a brown hand embroidered nose and mouth.  She has long and slender arms and legs and a pointy muzzle.  Because of her petite proportions, her hands and feet do not have felt paws.  She is hard stuffed with excelsior and has a bell rattle in her belly.  Ted retains her large, trailing "F" button; it it is estimated that she was produced in the 1912 through 1925 time frame.  Interestingly, she come in a pretty, festive cardboard box that is labeled "Weihnachten 1925" or "Christmas 1925." 

And what makes this sweet Ted the leader of the band?  Clearly, no Steiff enthusiast could resist her adorable facial expression or immaculate condition.  Not bad for a gal who's probably close to ninety years old!  But she's got rhythm for sure!  Her still functional rattle - a feature which Steiff used on a handful of its most popular c. 10 cm models through the 1920's - can't help but make most Steiff collectors feel like dancing!

Our silver medal choice is truly larger than life.  Here we have Steiff's Dwarf Spitz dog; he measures 20.5 cm high and approximately 20 cm long.  This Miniature Pomeranian dog is unjointed and standing.  He is hard stuffed with excelsior.  His body is made from long pile mohair, while his face, legs, and the back of his ears are made from short white mohair.  His face is detailed with dark brown and black glass pupil eyes and a black hand embroidered back nose and mouth.  The insides of his ears are lined in white felt.  He has a working lateral pressure voice squeaker.  Spitz retains his original red leather collar with metal ring; short trailing "F" Steiff button, "Dwarf Spitz" named chest tag, and fully legible yellow ear tag.  This delightful dog was manufactured in the 1935 through 1943 time frame. 

And what makes this little guy such a big deal? First, his condition is just extraordinary. It is challenging to find pristine examples of Steiff items from the late 1930 through early 1940 time frame - but this guy takes the blue ribbon in all categories here. Plus, Steiff has a wonderful history and legacy of producing Spitz or Pomeranian dogs. Over time, since the turn of last century, Steiff has produced this breed on wheels, fully jointed, and as a pincushion on a red velvet pillow. The earliest models were decorated with a red cord with two pom-poms or tassels around his neck, giving then a “regal” appearance. The breed does have some connections to German royalty, which may explain why they are decorated like “little kings”.  

You'll have to take Steiffgal's word on this - this Steiff "book" certainly deserves the gold medal!  Here we have Steiff's Spielbuch or Game Book.   This item is approximately 18.5 cm wide and about 15.5 cm high.  According to Steiff records, it was designed to provide "different templates for children from two years, to the placement of tactile sensitivity, color joy, skill and sense."  This unusual item is made from sheets of thick felt and is "bound" by metal rings.  Each page features hands on to-dos for young children, including activities related to colors, sizes, snaps, ties, buttons, and the like. The cover features a large, mostly flat three dimensional mohair rabbit head; his face is detailed with large brown and black glass pupil eyes, a pink-red hand embroidered nose and mouth, felt lined ears, and a red ribbon and bell. His ear is branded with a short trailing "F" Steiff button and a fully legible yellow ear tag.  The Game Book appeared in the Steiff catalog from 1935 through 1937; this particular example is the property of a former Steiff assistant.  

And what makes this Game Book today's winning best seller? This page turner certainly meets the gold standard in terms of the WOW factor...  it is so rare, unusual, and in relatively good condition given its age and raison d'être.  And, in all honesty, Steiffgal didn't even realize such an item ever existed in the line before reading about it in the Teddy Dorado catalog, and it's pretty hard to "stump the chump."  Don't you think it would be a divine addition to Steiffgal's library and archive? 

Steiffgal hopes this sneak peek at highlights from the upcoming Teddy Dorado auction has you going once, going twice, going three times to check out their other amazing offerings at www.teddydorado.com.
 Have a question about one of your Steiff treasures, family or otherwise? Let's talk! Click here to learn more. 

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