Collecting Barbie Clothing and Accessories

Barbie Doll Clothing
Barbie Doll Clothing

Every fashion model has lot’s of beautiful clothes and accessories and Barbie is definitely no exception! Mattel gave the doll an extensive wardrobe to go along with every career, hobby and mood Barbie could ever have!

Barbie has at one time or another wore every fashion accessory that real live fashion models wear. And, some of her clothes have been designed by the same designers that fashion models sport on the runways in Paris! Barbie’s wore some of the most beautiful clothes of any doll ever made.

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G.I. Joe: The Original Action Figure

GI Joe Action Figure
GI Joe Action Figure

Through the years Barbie has been the inspiration for a lot of young girls. But, believe it or not she was also the inspiration for G.I. Joe! Toy creator Stan Weston saw the big success that Barbie was enjoying and decided that a similar toy for young boys might have just as much success.

Hasbro agreed and the first prototypes were made in 1963. They were named Ace, a pilot, Rocky, a marine and Skip the sailor. The now famous name, G.I. Joe came when Hasbro director, Don Levine got the idea for the name from the 1945 movie, The Story of G.I. Joe.

 

The first G.I. Joe’s hit store shelves in February of 1964 and were designed with a World War II theme. There were only four figures in the initial production, one for each branch of the military. The figures  were 12″ tall and there were several accessory packs to go along with them.

In 1966, Hasbro released soldiers from various countries including Germany and France and by 1967, some of the figures were even talking! The Action Nurse came out in 1967 and was such a huge failure that Hasbro wouldn’t release another female G.I. Joe for 30 years.

As the Vietnam War broke out, Hasbro steered away from the theme of war and introduced the first G.I. Joe’s that were civilians! The 1969 line was known as The Adventures of G.I. Joe and soon just became the Adventure Team. Around this same time, the figure also began appearing with life like hair and a beard that was flocked instead of molded.

By 1974, Kung-Fu-Grip was introduced to the line as martial arts became more popular. This was the first figure that had softer hands that could actually hold objects, giving the figure more life like capabilities.

The last major feature added to the original figures was eagle eye vision, incorporated into the line in 1976. A small lever at the back of the figures head allowed the eyes to move as if looking around.

G.I. Joe received super hero status in 1976 when Atomic Man was added to the line up. Later, Bulletman joined him and they worked together as a team even having their own comic included with each figure. Later that same year, the Adventure Team took on enemies from outer space when The Intruders: Strong Men from Another World hit store shelves.

In 1976, the original 12″ line also met it’s retirement in America and was replaced with The Defenders. The following year, Hasbro started manufacturing the popular 8 1/2″ size known as the Super Joe Adventure Team.

They came with newer accessories such as battery operated back packs with lights and other accessories that were motorized and even the 1-2 punch. But, as 1978 came to an end, so did the Super Joe line. Most of the line had the soft plastic hands that enabled them to grip objects, but the plastic degraded over time and left many figures without limbs.

While various figures were still produced in other countries, it wasn’t until 1982 that G.I. Joe re-entered the American market as G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero. The small 3 3/4″ size opened the way for Hasbro to also introduce matching play sets and numerous vehicles to the line.

In 1985, G.I. Joe won the honor of being proclaimed as the best selling American toy in several magazines. The 3 3/4″ American Hero figures were canceled late in 1994 and replaced with both 12″ and 3 3/4″ figures based on the original Joe’s for their 30th Anniversary.

Over the years G.I. Joe has appeared on television, comic books, video games and promotional items as well. The company has released several collections and even reproduction figures geared towards collectors. Joe has had numerous vehicles and other accessories.

Joe has also been many famous people such as George Washington, Theodore Roosevelt and even Audie Murphy and Bob Hope! No matter what Joe has been he was, is and always will remain one of the most popular action figures ever made!

Written by Connie Corder, Copyright 2008 TLCollectables.com

McCoy Pottery – Most Popular American Pottery

McCoy Pottery
McCoy Pottery

McCoy pottery has been a long time favorite with collectors everywhere. It’s a sought after collectible that can be found for a few dollars at flea markets or could cost hundreds of dollars at an antique store. The pieces are both beautiful and usable items that are highly prized by collectors!

The pottery factory began as the Nelson McCoy Sanitary Stoneware Company in 1910. There earliest pieces weren’t marked and the now famous markings didn’t start appearing until 1929. And, through the years the markings have changed several times.

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Vintage Jewelry: Wearable Pieces of History

Vintage Jewelry
Vintage Jewelry

If you’ve always loved the look of older pieces of jewelry, then you’ve probably already got the beginnings of a vintage jewelry collection! Costume jewelry actually got it’s popular start in theaters and on stages throughout Europe! It made it’s way to America in the duffel bags of soldiers as presents for their wives, girlfriends, sisters and mothers!

In the late 20’s American manufacturers began to dominate the costume jewelry industry. And, they have continued to produce some of the most beautiful, most valuable pieces available today. Many pieces are both signed and marked identifying the designer or the company, but many unsigned pieces are just as collectable.

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Collecting Stamps Is Like Collecting Tiny Pieces of Art!

US Postage Stamp Inverted Airplane
US Postage Stamp Inverted Airplane

It’s estimated that in the U.S. alone there are over 20 million postage stamp collectors. But, stamp collecting is one of the most popular hobbies in the entire world. Stamps are great collectibles for anyone, you don’t need a lot of space to store them and it’s one collection that you can take with you where ever you go!

The first stamp collectors were actually children, at the time, adults considered it a childish hobby. During the 1920’s publicity began to circulate about the value of some stamps and it spurred a huge increase in the amount of stamp collectors. And, today there are literally thousands of stamp shows around the world!

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The Passion for Collecting Barbie Dolls

Barbie Doll
Barbie Doll

The Barbie Doll is probably the most famous of all dolls. Barbie has been America’s favorite glamour girl since 1959 and her fame and popularity has spread world wide.

Some people value their prized Barbie doll collection just as others value their collection of gold coins! And, in fact, some Barbie’s are worth as much or even more than some gold coins. One Barbie sold for $17,000 and one original 1959 doll sold for almost $26,000!

If you love Barbie, whether or not you are a collector, you will enjoy this!

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Antique Toys Are One of the Top Five Collectible Items

Antique Toy Truck
Antique Toy Truck

Collecting antique toys can be both a hobby and an investment, it can be both fun and a way to relive childhood memories.

Toy collections really began getting popular in the United States in the mid 1960’s and toys have quickly became one of the top five collectible items in the U.S. today.

In 1988, thirty-six toy collectors spent over $5 million dollars at the Perlman Toy Museum sale in less than 24 hours! Although, toy prices have leveled off somewhat since the 80’s, their value has continued to keep going up and toys remain a steady investment.

 

For many collectors the value of an antique toy can’t be measured in dollars. The excitement of once again owning one of their favorite childhood toys is priceless. And, for some it’s just the pleasure of finally owning a toy that they always wanted as a child and never got. It’s a way of stepping back in time and recapturing a much more carefree and simple time of their lives.

The vast array of possibilities for toy collections also helps to make the hobby more popular. There are collections of certain toys, such as trains, dolls, board games and teddy bears. But, it goes even further to collections of tin toys, pull toys, paper toys and even collections of toys from a specific company.

Original Teddy Bear 1903
Original Teddy Bear 1903

The first American Teddy Bear was made in 1902 as a gift for Theodore Roosevelt, but overseas productions began around the same time. Many of the original teddy bears were stuffed with saw dust as it was readily available. And, they were made of mohair, wool and even felt. Some of the most favorite collectible bears feature jointed limbs and growlers.

The passion for board games is elevated by the fact that they often featured popular comic book and television characters. A complete board game is a rare find since they contained small pieces that were easily lost. But, some collectors have actually completed an incomplete game set by finding the missing pieces in various places.

Model trains are one of the most popular toys to collect and some collectors have even dedicated entire rooms to their train layouts. And, one collector paid $10,000 for the very first Batman comic book. Since, toys were all originally made to be played with, one that is in mint or even good condition can be quite expensive.

Many collections have began from toys that were handed down through generations and had great sentimental value. Whatever the reason for collecting toys, it’s one of the most fun things that you can collect and a good excuse to be a kid again!

Written by Connie Corder, Copyright 2008 TLCollectables.com

Collecting Dolls

Antique Doll

Collecting dolls goes back in time quite a ways. There are people who collect nothing except old and antique dolls. Other people will collect any doll that may become of value in the future.

Some of the very first dolls ever made were actually made of cloth. The first cloth doll I remember as a child is the Raggedy Ann doll. As time passed, technology took great strides towards advancement. Another great collectible would become the cabbage patch dolls. Those dolls were very popular for a long time and are today a very valuable collectable.

 

Paper dolls hit the scene for a brief moment. These dolls, made completely of paper, were easily cut out and made an easy doll. These were mostly popular among the younger children and really did not become a huge collectible.

Wax dolls are another original collectible all the way back from the 19th century. These dolls were wax sculpted over a paper mache body and were very adorable. Collectors did shy away from these dolls to begin with due to their frailty. A true collector does not look for the cut and bruises on a doll though. A true wax doll collector looks for the essence of the 19th century.

After cloth dolls came plastic dolls. Everyone should remember the two very popular dolls that took America by storm when they came out. The Barbie doll and the G.I. Joe doll were great improvements in doll making history. These dolls forever branded themselves in American history as being the best dolls on the market. The Barbie doll and the G.I. Joe doll became instantly popular and a big collectible item.

Collecting dolls can be a fun and entertaining hobby. It will allow you to collect beautiful works of art that will actually increase in value, as it gets older. Just be sure to keep your dolls in their original casing and are kept at a reasonable room temperature.