Sunday, October 9, 2011

Do you remember these?

I was reminded recently of how much I like these screen printed stuffed animals.  For a while I found them at flea markets and antique shows but I never saw one in a shop.  I once had a cat similar to the one shown and wanted, for years, to make a basket full of them.  I never found enough in good condition.  I have a dog with a blue ribbon and two Santas and continue to search for more Santas.  I tried for a long time to locate the source without success.  The printed-on label on the bottom of the animals says "Toy Works" and although I have searched through the years and looked on eBay, I've found few of them.

Today, after I mentioned the little dog in reply to a comment on another post I took off on a search and this time I found the source.  The company is Toy Works and it is located in Middle Falls New York in the Adirondacks.  The division of the company that makes the silk screen animals is now called Fiddler's Elbow.  For collectors that might be a clue as to age if you find one. 
I copied this information from the website: 
'More than three decades ago, John Gunther started the silk-screening company with a handful of workers in an old barn that once housed 10,000 chickens. Now we are celebrating our 38th year in business.  John conceived the idea in 1973 after a visit to the Museum of the City of New York, where he viewed an exhibition of 19th century cloth toys intricately printed using an antiquated process of hand engraved copper rollers. John's mission was to revive this art form using modern silk-screening techniques. This proved to be challenging, as there was no one experienced in full color textile printing, no school to consult. Fiddler's Elbow developed the process the hard way, through constant experimentation and soon became the best reproduction silk-screen printer in the country.' 

This little Yorkie pillow is another example of current work.  These animals are called "doorstops" by the company. 

I like one tucked into a chair or nestled among the pillows on a bed just where a real pet might be.  They look good on a stairway, too.  My Santas, when they come out for the season, become part of a group that stand all together in a chair.  I so want more!

The only way to purchase from the Toy Works is wholesale but I found a retail site.  They also have great looking doormats with pet photos.  I think these were doormats. 

The site is  

"Too much of a good thing can be wonderful."...Mae West

1 comment:

  1. Hey Y'ALL. I just checked the webpage I shared for Fiddler's Elbow figures and it doesn't seem to have photos now. I will keep an eye out a better source. I may be the only one looking but that's OK.


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