Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Vintage Plastic

MyFunkyJunk offers this vintage plastic Marx figure.

What Makes Plastic "Vintage"

Vintage items seem to be all the rage these days. The rich and famous in fact tend to adorn themselves in what's old more often than what's currently "in style." Although vintage has become a catchword of sorts for anything that is both old and pretty, the term actually has a more specific definition. An item needs to be at least 20 years old in order to truly qualify as a "vintage" piece. In terms of plastics, this means that goods from the '20s through the '70s are vintage classics, while '80s and '90s products will soon enter the fold as well.


The Best Types of Vintage Plastic

Particular types of plastic can also be regarded as more vintage than others, particularly in terms of jewelry. Bakelite, Lucite, Catalin, and Thermoset are considered to be among the first rate of vintage plastic materials.

Other valuable items include plastic toy soldiers and plastic lunchboxes. The former collectibles are best known from Louis Marx and Company, known for its creation of well-crafted plastic goods from the '50s through to the '70s. The 1960 "Gunsmoke" Collection and 1959 "Wyatt Earp" line are two of the most prestigious and coveted Marx plastic offerings.
MidwoodVintage offers this vintage plastic lunchbox.

Kitschy lunch boxes made from plastic have also recently become well favored as popular vintage items. This holds true particularly well if the lunch box depicts some well-known pop cultural item from its era. These boxes are typically square in shape, featuring hard plastic in bright pigments like cherry red or lime green.


Where and How

You will need to become quite adept at hunting around and showing tenacity in order to land on some amazing vintage plastic finds. Step one is to head to the local antique stores in your neighborhood. Don't just walk in silently; talk with the staff, smile and get them on your side, then inquire about their advice for vintage plastics local to you. Next up, you should head for thrift stores, the nearby Salvation Army, and similar establishments; more often than not, plastic gems hide there, unnoticed yet gleaming all the way. In the spring and summer, check your local papers for upcoming flea markets, which can be another strong way to locate vintage plastics. Last but not least, head to websites such as Ebay, Etsy, and Papernstitch, who regularly stock their pages with vintage finds.

Check out:
Vintage Jewelry Lane,  
The Jailbreak,  
Toy Memories, and  
Cheeky Chicago 
for more information on this topic.

Special thanks to  Jordan @ Article Writing

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