Monday, December 12, 2016

This Unusual Steiff Penguin Is All Dressed Up With No Place To Go!


Now that the holiday hooligans are in full swing, Steiffgal thought it would be a good time to invite readers to chill out and meet one of her favorite seasonal friends - a wonderful and unusually sized early postwar Steiff penguin. There's just something about these delightful black and white buddies that make them universal favorites. Perhaps it is their charming appearance, playful personalities, or their adorable wiggle walk (or all of the above!) What do you think?

Consider this your formal introduction to Steiffgal's beloved "Tux." Tux is a super-sized version of Steiff's early and original Peggy penguin design. He is pictured here on the left, towering over his 10 cm cousin of the same pattern. Tux measures a little over 50 cm tall. He is standing, unjointed, solidly stuffed with excelsior, and made from black and white mohair. His beak and oversized, fat feet are made from red felt and have black painted detailing on them. His wings are floppy and hang gently at his sides. His face comes to life with green and black slit pupil style eyes. His squeaker works loudly and clearly! Tux's Peggy pattern appeared in the line from 1952 through 1956 and was produced on a commercial scale in 10, 14, and 22 cm.

In the mid-1950s, Steiff gave its standard line Peggy penguin design a little makeover. The “new” Peggy was now more angular and lifelike; she had additional airbrushed details, a pointy beak, and slimmer grey feet. Larger versions were head jointed. The updated Peggy penguin appeared in the line from 1956 through 1975 in 10, 14, 22, 35, and 50 cm. She was also produced as a studio edition in 80 cm for a few years in the 1960s.

It is interesting to note that Tux at 50 cm is more than twice as big as the largest standard sized Steiff early Peggy of the era. However, he is about the same size as the smaller and beloved real-life "Gentoo" breed of penguins, for which he has a somewhat similar appearance. You can see a happy trio of Gentoo penguins here on the left. As such, perhaps Tux could be considered an early postwar "Studio" example by default!

Tux's IDs are consistent with his era of production. He has a linen "US Zone" tag sewn into his front hip seam, a raised script button, and a yellow tag with the numbers 4350,2 printed on it. This corresponds to 4=sitting up or begging, 3=mohair, 50=50 cm tall, and ,2=double press voice, growler, or pull cord voice - all which truly describe him in the broadest sense.  

Steiffgal hopes that Tux has added a touch of elegance and sophistication to you day.

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

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