BOTTLE COLLECTING

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the least you should know

COLLECTING BOTTLES  . . . . PART1

First Installment #28 The Least You Should Know  (link) 50 collector series, I’ll be talking about BOTTLES, JUST COLLECTING LITTLE OLD BOTTLES. Hopefully I can get you interested enough to get you off your hiny and start collecting, and Antique Bottles would be a good place to start.

This is one reason you should start collecting bottles. They are interesting to look at; they come in every shape and size and most are quite colorful. Bottles have a history, a history of companies that have come and gone. Some have survived the ups and downs of the ever changing economy, and some may be even in the same city you live in.

The part I find most interesting is when bottle companies moved away from the original imposed glass look to the new and improved stick on paper labels. Advertisement of their product had no limits If they could fit some slogan on that label, you were good to go.  pill bottle labelToday if you were lucky enough to find an old bottle with a label still on it, you’d be surprised at some of the interesting advertisements and the ingredient would surprise you even more. So… still interested in collecting bottles? Then this is where you would start.

How and where would you find old Bottles?

You can find bottles at swap meets, flea markets, garage sales, trade shows and one of the best places to buy or trade is at an antique store or mall. You can find and start digging around old FARM DUMPING SPOTS.

Some of these serious bottle collectors add metal detecting to their hobby. Now we all know, when you’re METAL detecting, we’d be waiting a long time for a detector to give off any beeping sound when looking for glass bottles. But not only do we hear beeping from the old tin cans and the likes, there are bottles. Always lots of bottles, sitting right beside  the beeping of the tin cans. EH!

YOU TUBE HAS GREAT VIDEOS ON WHERE TO FIND BOTTLES (link)

Did you know early settlers dug holes along their fence line just to bury their daily household garbage? That’s where you would find your bottles, and that’s if … “IF YOU CAN ONLY FIND THAT FENCE LINE!” which today are mostly long gone.  Rural dumps and old abandoned properties are a good spot to go digging.

LET’S ASSUME THE FARMER LIKED TO HAVE A LITTLE NIP ONCE IN A WHILE, Whisky BOTTLES, WINE BOTTLES EVERYWHERE and don’t forget the bottles that had a little tonic in them to grease up the hair, as well as perfume for those Saturday night hoedowns.

WHAT TO COLLECT” … Bottles of COURSE.

identify antique bottle

The bottles from the yesteryear, like I said were colorful, had different shapes and sizes. Some of the labels were a joy to read, and are something of a joke nowadays. Some state “Made with pure Opium with a touch of marijuana flavoring to help soothe the soul.” The one label from the 30s, a Raleigh bottle describes their ointment this way, “IF IT DOESN’T WORK ON YOUR MAN, IT SURE WILL WORK ON YOUR HORSE”.  . .  That’s the best LABEL I’VE SEEN.

BOTTLE COLLECTING IS A FUN AND INTERESTING HOBBY.


Doing research for this article made me think . . .  “I should add bottle collecting to my resume”. The information out there is enormous with clubs everywhere. BOTTLE SHOWS every 4 months and the people, vendors, are full of information and always glad to share their secrets with a newbie bottle collector.

I’m not a collector of bottles by any means, but being around the scene you do pick up a lot of information. To write this post as accurately as possible, I did a lot of fun research on the subject, and by the  way ,  When You’re Hooked on bottle collecting , you too will have to do even more research on this exciting hobby.

coca-cola bottles

So now I’m doing research on beer bottles, and that’s a subject I hold “dear to my heart”.  I came across some information on a rare dark colored beer bottle and a bit of history of this old brewery. It was located down the street from where I lived as a kid. I NEVER KNEW THAT!  One block away!

It was way before my time but none the less, I found the information fascinating. I guess I could add beer bottle collecting to my other hobbies, but where I live, there are still only 24 hrs in a day. But I did find that bottle intriguing enough that I’ll be doing more research on that brewery. You know… the one nobody even knew was there … except a “misinformed bottle collector”  . . . right?

BUT THAT IS HOW IT STARTS

Today that brewery in question has been turned back into a modern day home brew establishment, and the proprietors never knew the original building was a famous brew house to start with!

REMEMBER, RESEARCH IS THE KEY. ON YOUR NEW FOUND HOBBY. GET TO KNOW EVERYTHING THERE IS TO KNOW. WHEN COLLECTING ANYTHING, “KNOWLEDGE IS POWER

And that’s how it starts, so WHAT TO COLLECT (link) Collecting Antique Old Bottles is where it’s at.

∞ ∞ Check out part 2 of “COLLECTING OLD BOTTLES” ∞ ∞ (link

EXCELLENT WEB SITES ON COLLECTING bOTTLES   

∞ https://antique-bottles.net/

∞ http://www.ointmentpots.com/home

∞ https://americanglassgallery.com/subscribe-to-ab-gc

∞  https://poisonsnmore.webs.com/oldbottleresearch.htm

∞ https://www.bottlestore.com/blog/the-curious-world-of-bottle-collecting-and-the-people-who-collect-them/

∞ http://www.canadianbottlecollectors.com/

∞ https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles/how-to-start-a-collection-50-manly-collection-ideas/

 

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WHAT TO COLLECT, what to collect

collecting So you want to start a new hobby and you’re not too sure what to collect? If its any help, that’s the most asked question on the web,  WHAT TO COLLECT” what to collect? What relaxing type of hobby could I start? . . . YOU KNOW, something I could just… ease into, something not too expensive?  In the end, YOU’RE the only person that can answer that question. But today is you’re in lucky day, 🍀 I do have a few suggestions.

HERE ARE MY SUGGESTIONS TO WHAT TO COLLECT.

PICK A HOBBY OR COLLECTIBLE THAT YOU’RE ALREADY INTERESTED IN.  SOMETHING YOU FIND EXHILARATING OR MAYBE SOMETHING YOU ALREADY KNOW LOTS ABOUT AND THAT JUST NEEDS A LITTLE . . . POLISHING.

REMEMBER, IF YOU HAVE ANY MORE THAN 3 THE SAME, YOU’RE ALREADY A COLLECTOR.

In my series of “THE LEAST YOU SHOULD KNOW” I will try and show you, the readers, simple things to look for to collect, anything.  I myself try and look at things from different angles, simple things to look for, and help date unusual things. I will NOT make you an expert. I’m just showing you a few tricks that I picked up along the way of collecting, or just buying and selling if that’s your niche. I bookmark any websites that I find interesting on collecting for the readers. There are some real good and interesting reads on your choice of hobby.

did you know beer bottles

HOPEFULLY INTRODUCE PEOPLE TO THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF COLLECTING, anything.

But it would only stand to reason if you like sports, collecting sports related items could be more in line of your future hobby, or heavy manly stuff would be cast iron goods. People are fascinated with wood molds, or any factory related items. Many people also collect military item, antique machinery or tools.

WHAT TO COLLECT, WHAT TO COLLECT, DECISIONS, DECISIONS.

In my installments of “THE LEAST YOU SHOULD KNOW” Series of 50, I tell you what to look for, maybe get you interested in collecting anything, something unusual.

  • Vintage Photographs with hopefully a famous signature on it.
  • Coins.
  • Cosmetic Jewelry.
  • Clothing.
  • Playing cards from around the world
  • Stamps
  • Vintage bar-ware
  • Action figures
  • Bottle Openers
  • Train sets are fun and lucrative.
  • Snow globe
  • Anything with Advertising on it!  Signs, Pens, Campaign Buttons.
  • Wine corks.
  • Rare books.
  • Penny Banks are small as well as Royal Dalton figurines, match boxes, decorative thimbles, Pez dispensers, etc., and the list goes on!

RULES FOR COLLECTING ANTIQUES

  ∞ Buy what you can afford.

  ∞ Buy something that you enjoy and that is already pleasing to the eye.

  ∞ Buy collectables that suit your lifestyle. (If you are an apartment dweller, collecting antique furniture might prove challenging) but smaller items (Like my list) SHOULD NOT DETER YOU FROM THE FUN OF COLLECTING.

So what are good things to collect you ask, “THE SKY IS THE LIMIT”


RC Bundles

Do your research. There are many things of interest for everybody’s tastes and lifestyles.

Did you know that most, to all Antique malls do not charge  admission.

Going to most antique malls could turn out to be an exciting 2 hour afternoon adventure.

Did you know that garage sale treasure hunting is one of the most entertaining things to do for you and your family bonding?

Please check out my Pinterest Board

https://www.pinterest.ca/davewettlaufer/

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Train the eye to “SEE”

The hunt is the best part of your new found hobby. Whether it’s collecting antiques or collecting new and up and coming future collectable items, do your research and “TRAIN THE EYE TO SEE”.

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“THINGS TO COLLECT”

PLEASE CHECK OUT MY 50 SERIES OF”THE LEAST YOU SHOULD KNOW”.  THIS BLOG SITE IS WHERE I CAN HELP YOU WITH A VARIETY OF TIPS AND INFORMATION ON COLLECTING “ANYTHING”


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Christmas Tree Ornaments

Collecting Christmas Tree Ornaments

Collecting Christmas Tree Ornaments and decorations, or anything Christmas, is a real serious passion for many group of people. These Christmas goods collectors take more than just a fancy to the little round objects they call Christmas Tree Ornaments. They look at anything Christmas through different eyes than most people. It’s a passion for many of these people. NO! . . . It’s an obsession.

You the collector have been hunting down and Collecting oldKugels Ornaments Christmas Tree Ornaments all year long and its finally time to show off your fine collection to the “VERLD” I mean world.

It’s Christmas Time in Canada at last Eh!

Hell, Collecting Christmas Tree Ornaments and the likes is an addiction of sorts.

We all know there’s not a proper way of decorating your Christmas tree. There’s no book of rules. As long as you make it pleasurable looking for you and your family, that’s all that counts. Your kids bring home ornaments they have made a school and you hang these personalized drawings on the tree. Christmas cards are strategically placed between the branches along with the lights, tinsel and the beautiful colored hanging decorations that come in every shape and size. This is a special time of year for a lot of folks.

People take this Special Day of the year quite seriously.

The tradition comes alive but sadly only once a year, except, for this one fella on U Tube video . . . .”Christmas is all year long.”

Please watch an excellent U Tube video on collecting Christmas Tree Ornaments.

Did you know that the way we spend Christmas in the modern world,  wasn’t always like that? Some old documentations date decorating Christmas trees back to the 1600’s. But Christmas as we know it today didn’t really become popular until much later on, around the 1800’s. But I’m sure people celebrated Saint Nickolas Day in some form of celebration.

 A LITTLE HISTORY ON CHRISTMAS IN EUROPE

German Santa was called the Belsnickel and Wikipedia.org says Belsnickel means;

German for to wallop or to drub and Nickel being a hypocorism of the given name Nikolaus) is a crotchety, fur-clad Christmas gift-bringer figure in the folklore of the Palatinate region of southwestern Germany along the Rhine, the Saarland, and the Odenwald area of Baden-Württemberg. The figure is also preserved in Pennsylvania Dutch communities in the USA.

Christmas Tree Ornaments

Kovels Antiques and Collectable Guide says.       https://www.kovels.com

Christmas collectables include not only Christmas trees and ornaments, but they also include. Santa Claus figures, special dishes,, games, wrapping paper. Belsnickle is a 19th century figure of Father Christmas, made of paper mache

A popular Kugel is an early, heavy ornament made of thick blown glass, lined with zinc or lead and often covered with colored wax. Christmas cards, tin toys are also highly collectable. I was personally  collecting still banks. The Santa Clause cast iron bank were a hard find, but they were my favorite. So Christmas décor comes in many different shapes, sizes and themes.

Something to look for on Kugel tree ornaments.

1840s-1900s they were heavy, blown glass. (Kugel in Germany) means round ball but don’t let that fool you. They came in different shapes and styles like fruits, apples, berries and the like. The older additions had their name stamped on the steel collar of the ornament. (like many other makes) A very light chrome coating covered some, so look for flaking  or the worn tarnish after many years. The spring clips that attached the string to the ornament were attached inside the top of the bulb. Not like today’s push on attachment.  During the war years, the ornaments and decorations had a paper or cardboard collar (instead of steel), mainly because of the mass shortage in material, due to the war effort.

** Point to remember in collecting anything. The war years changed how many things were made or not made due to the war machine.  “Steel, paints and most or all material in general were cut back for public use. Etc”.

Christmas Snow Baby

Christmas Snow Baby

(1864) Early Snow babies are highly collectable. They were made of candy and used as Christmas decorations. In later years they were made from bisque and spattered with glitter sand. There are also Snow babies tableware  made by Royal Bayreuth. Copies of the small Snow Babies figurines are being made today in a line called “Snow-Babies” re- pro. But that’s not a bad thing.

The least you should know on Christmas Tree Ornaments. ∞

Imposed identifying marks on the ring or, some people call them caps.

The older caps were smaller than the newer versions.

Look for a paper /cardboard ring/ cap.  That will date it into the war years.

Look for a tarnished ring.

Check the lip under the ring. Is the glass flush or has it a lip. Older ones are flush.

Plastic is a dead giveaway of newer ornaments.

Countries to look for when collecting old Christmas Tree Ornaments

*Czechoslovakia *Poland *Germany

Shiny Brites Ornaments

Shiny Brites Ornaments

Shiny Brite Tree ORNAMENTS 1930-1960s seem to be the most popular for collectors. Before the war they were just plain decorative balls for the tree. After the war, they became a little more colorful. Some came with concave starburst (reflectors) with lots of glitter, different  shapes and styles .

ALSO LOOK FOR 

Advertising SIGNS- Example – “Coca Cola sign with Santa drinking a coke”

DISHES- glassware with a Christmas theme.

Decorative hand painted balls and shapes like animals and little, hand- carved people, etc.

Decorative bells

Hanging lanterns

Snowbabies are highly collectables        https://www.kovels.com/price-guide/snow-babies.html

Cardboard cutout of St. Nickolas figurine

Betty Boop hanging ornament.

Novelty hanging decorations.

“German Dresden ornaments are embossed cardboard with very fine detailing.”

Christmas post cards come in pages of 4 and you just cut out the one you want. They’re collectable!

There is no written rule on decorating your tree but there are some real neat old looking ornaments and decorations out there to be uncovered.

AS THE STORY GOES, THEY EVEN HUNG COOKIES FROM THE TREE BRANCHES AS PER STORY.

“When I grew up in Europe there were no artificial trees nor electric lights to brighten up the tree. The Christmas decorations were mostly passed down from generation to generation and were hand painted, small ornaments, about 3-4 inches in diameter.

There were also many bird- shaped ornaments with angel hair tails, fancy home made cookies, strings of various nuts, and of course with real candles about 3 inches high.

The candles were only lit for a half hour or so, because it was so dangerous and one of the adults would be on watch with a candle snuffer and water, in case the tree caught fire.”

  Author Unknown

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Rare Santa Bank

Very Rare Santa clause Bank

Do your research on Christmas Collectables. You will find a wealth of information on Christmas Tree Ornaments and oddities on the web.  So don’t be too surprised if you get hooked on this interesting hobby. Bonus, you can show off your fine Christmas collection the same time, every year.

”So let’s get started.” Eh!

Old Christmas postcard

Old Christmas Post Card

Lots of places to find treasures: the thrift stores, flea markets, garage sales, and church bazaars. Nobody thinks of Christmas in the off season, (summer), but that is the best time to buy. Do your research now,  get armed with what to look for, get ready for the off season, and remember in any collecting,

 “Knowledge is power”.

Let’s get started! Oh, I already said that Eh.  Remember, they’re everywhere. You just have to look and find them.

“Please leave me a comment or any suggestions.”

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 INTERESTING WEBSITES FOR YOUR RESEARCH.

https://www.kovels.com/price-guide/snow-babies.html

https://oodlesandoodles.typepad.com/my_weblog/2011/11/everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-vintage-christmas-ornaments.html

https://www.realorrepro.com/article/Christmas-Kugels

https://www.marthastewart.com/1532933/history-antique-kugel-christmas-ornaments

Pictorial Guide To Christmas Ornaments & Collectibles, Identification and Values (BOOK)

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Cast Iron Collectables

 

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#47 of a Series of 50

Comparing good and bad casting

Comparing Good and Bad Casting

BUT HOW DO YOU KNOW IF IT’s OLD?  

In order to understand the difference between an older piece of cast iron and a newer piece (reproduction), you have to somewhat understand what cast iron is and how it’s made. Especially cast iron Collectables and antiques.

Very general rules

In the olden, golden days talented wood craftsmen would have carved out the perfect shape of a item with fine detailing and then heated up molted metal to around 2000 decrease (give or take) and pour it into the mold. When cooled the two or more parts of the mold are separated and wa-la, the shape of whatever you designed is made. Most wood molds are generally only used once due to the heat.

Cast or casting is generally referring to a mold. People that do ceramics in most part use molds and they blow hot glass into it to get it’s shape and what it’s going to look like is determined by the shape of the mold.

Cast iron is the same

Now having said that, cost effective reusable molds would be made of sand and water Solutions, which are referred to as “SAND MOLDS” They’re more widely used especially on smaller items, such as toys, banks etc.

THE FINER THE SAND THE FINER, SMOOTHER AND DETAILED THE ITEM WILL BE. THE COARSER THE SAND,AND ROUGHER TO THE TOUCH, THE DETAIL AND QUALITY WOULD BE GONE,  “you get the idea”.

I never understood this part of today’s technology. By far our way of casting exceeds the casting from 50 or 200 years back. But the cast iron parts made today are coarser to the touch, crudely made, and in most part, in my thinking, not really attractive looking. In other words, they’re cheaply machine made, especially on reproduction antique and collectable Parts.

Cast Iron Collectables

So if we’re talking old cast iron money banks, cast iron door stops, door hammers, even cast iron toys, frying pans anything that has been molded, check the surface for fine or rough texture.

When I’m referring to casting, once you make that mold, you could theoretically pour molted aluminum instead of iron. That would make it cast aluminum. Many everyday items are cast aluminum.

If you look at any bottle, (pop bottle to beer bottle) look at the side from the bottom to the top, see and feel the 2 lines, one on each side of the bottle. That’s from where the two half’s of the mold met and separated to make the bottle.

That’s one way of telling how old the bottle is, but that’s a different subject all together.

There are many things that are made from molds. Fiberglass boats and cars parts, to name a few, are made from molds. So that technology is widely used today.

BUT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT CAST IRON. Eh!

By the way, iron is a very cheap “metal” by-product of steel.

Seven fast ways I check the age of cast iron.

  • Check the smoothness of the piece.

    POOR CAST IRON REPRODUCTION bank

    REPRODUCTION ROUGH CAST IRON

  • Check how parts fit together, tight with very little to no gaps, that’s a  good thing. Remember craftsmanship, real people assembled these pieces not machines.
  • Check inside of the part. Sometimes the casting is reasonably smooth on the outside but very coarse on the inside. That would be a red flag.
  • Check the quality of paint. In most cases, depending on the manufacturer, they dip the items in paint, which makes the paint thicker. Today items are sprayed on with very low quality paint and thickness.
  • 100 year old paint would in most part still look like last week’s paint job.
  • Check the screw or screws holding the sections/parts together. Older items before and around the industrial evolution were slotted screw heads, and, don’t get me wrong
    Slotted Screw HEAD on old cast iron banks

    WHAT A SLOTTED SCREW LOOKS LIKE IN AN ANTIQUE

    (that’s not saying the screw was not changed), but it does devalue the piece no less and could just throw you off from thinking it’s not an original.

  • They say compare the size of the part to a known authentic WHAT EVER. The reproduction one would be a different size than the original. There are some reference books that will give you measurements and  that’s only if you’re really concerned or paying large dollars for the item.

Once you get used to a few simple tricks, you might have a better understanding what to look for. There are more good reproductions of cast iron parts out there than the old authentic ones.  But you will at least  be armed with a few general things to look for.

Please check out my blog on “Cast Iron Trivets” (LINK)

Note.

By the way, small cast iron items such as banks, toy figurine, kitchen ware, skillets, anything small are good sellers, or on the other hand, just good collector items. Just remember, collecting cast iron “anything”, doesn’t take up a lot of room.

I’m not an expert by any means, This is just a simple guide on how I check, “anything cast iron”. Do your research, and learn more

Please check out my post on Collecting Space Age Toys.

Collecting Space Age Memorabellia.

This is part of of a series of 50

“THE LEAST YOU SHOULD KNOW” 50 series.

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Useful, maybe even a little Patriotic at times.

Please consider donating to a starving Canadian blogger.

Pay through Secured PayPal

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