My love of vintage and antique toys started a very long time ago when I was given a family doll over 100 years old. From there I soon discovered a wonderful variety of playthings. I would like to introduce you to some of my favourites.
The Forest Toys of Brockenhurst are an amazing range of hand carved and painted wooden toys. As Fergus Gambon said in his foreword to the book I have just published, they are “naïve yet catching exactly the spirit of the creature, person or object that they represent”. Although appearing to belong in the 18th and 19th centuries, these playthings were made between 1922 and 1939.
Doll’s houses come in an amazing range of shapes, sizes and countries of origin. These include shops of all types from butchers to milliners, room settings, stables and warehouses and even swimming pools. Then, of course, there are fascinating inhabitants to collect.
Tin toys encompass a surprisingly broad range of playthings. There are bathrooms with working water and lights, room settings, gazebos and stables, in addition to all the cars and wind-up toys.
Erzgebirge toys are the tiny wooden figures from the Erzgebirge region of Germany, which have been made for well over 100 years, make a fascinating collection. They cover every aspect of everyday life and can include Adam and Eve, weddings, swimming parties and every type of car, wagon and truck imaginable.