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I recently happened upon a collection of Wade’s Red Rose Tea Whimsies at a local thrift shop. Since I watch Antiques Roadshow, I know that a group is more valuable then its parts.
Several years ago, I came upon this fellow at a local estate sale.
I had no idea what he was, but thought he was kind of cool and he was only 25 cents. On the back he was marked Wade England.
Fast forward to the thrift shop and there were 20 pieces and my brain clicked to the little figure I had. I asked if she would make me a deal if I took them all. They were marked $2.50 each. She let me have them for $30 for all. I said sold, she wrapped them and I brought them home.
Whisper Wade “Whimsies” into many people’s ears and it will mean only one thing…small animal figurines from the George Wade Pottery of Burslem, England.
Wade began in 1810 in Burslem, England, with a small workshop and a single pottery oven making mostly bottles and pottery items. He soon turned his attention to the more profitable ceramics needs of textile mills, which supported the company into the late 1920s. As well as industrial ceramics, Wade produced a line of beautiful figurines, many Art Deco. These were so popular that animal figures were added. The line ran into a snag when it was found that the Cellulose finish turned yellow and peeled off with age. In the late 1930s some models were reissued with a high gloss underglaze finish. (Source)
You can ead more about and see the collections here.
I found a handmade Snowlady at my local Goodwill. There is a manager where I work that collects dolls. I thought she would be the perfect addition to her collection. There was only problem, there was a blob of dried glue where her nose used to be!
I went to my local Michaels to get a miniature carrot to glue on it, but they no longer stock miniatures. What to do? I happened by the ribbon table lady that makes the bows to ask where the miniatures are. We brainstormed a bit…clay? beads of stacking sizes? whittle down a dowel rod? She then said maybe there is a carrot button?
As I was heading to the bead and button section, I passed the sea shells and what did I spy?
I thought if I cut off the tip and painted it orange, that maybe just maybe? Well it worked!
And here she is in all her glory. What was the tab for this redo? Bag of shells $2.99, drops of orange acrylic paint for pennies. Finished product is priceless!
I cannot wait to deliver it tomorrow! She will love it! I told her on the phone today that I found a doll for her and that I had to replace a part. I told her when I delivered her I would tell her which one. If I said carrot nose, she would know it was a snowman!
Cannot spoil a surprise by giving it away!
I found a new to me and new to the area, too, thrift shop in Colonial Heights called Grantiques. While on my first trip in I spied with my little eye this lady. She stands about 14” tall and is made from chalkware. She was priced at $29.99. I knew she was old as most chalkware is from the 40s and 50s. I knew she had something to do with the war as she was saluting and dressed as a WAC (Women’s Army Corp). I later found that the WACs were established in 1941.
Over 150,000 American women served in the Women’s Army Corps (WAC) during World War 11. Members of the WAC were the first women other than nurses to serve within the ranks of the United States Army. Both the Army and the American public initially had difficulty accepting the concept of women in uniform. However, political and military leaders, faced with fighting a two-front war and supplying men and materiel for that war while continuing to send lend-lease material to the Allies, realized that women could supply the additional resources so desperately needed in the military and industrial sectors. Given the opportunity to make a major contribution to the national war effort, women seized it. By the end of the war their contributions would be widely heralded. (source)
I found this little lady was stuck in my head and this voice kept saying, “go get her!” I waiting patiently until the shop reopened from its holiday hiatus on Saturday and made a beeline for her! I asked the lady that owned the store if she could do a bit better and she came down to $25. She then told me the rest of the story. The lady that owned it and whose son sold it to her said she won it as a carnival prize at the World’s Fair. there was one in New York in 1939 and another in Los Angeles in 1940. It could have been either one.
I have Googled every combination I can think of looking for another, but cannot find one. Since they were carnival prizes they would be plentiful and also disposable, so she may be rare. I guess time will tell.
For now she looks lovely on my shelf in the living room. I love her colors and her chippy façade!
Pic from here.
It is all over, but the clean-up! That is NEVER the fun part.
Here is my wish for your New Year and it is from Mother Teresa:
“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come.
We have only today. Let us begin.”
And so the new year begins, wonder what it will hold?