Sunday, March 31, 2013

Antique Easter Egg Full of Toys

Found in a local antique shop just in time for Easter was this egg. An old but rather nondescript egg made of red stained pressed paper, it measures about 4 1/4 inches tall, and has a cord at the top so it can be hung as a decoration.

Here's the egg with an Easter postcard from the same time period (1900s) for a sense of size.

Upon closer inspection, a seam was revealed along the side, and when the egg was opened, toy treasures were discovered within, still sewn down to their original backing cards.

 
The little bisque doll is a mere 2 1/2 inches tall, and lies nestled in a bed of paper lace. On the other side of the egg, a set of four carved wooden Erzgebirge toy figures wait to be played with.



These toy filled eggs were made in Germany from the late 1800s up to about 1920. They were popular in France as Easter gifts, and were exported there in great quantities. Few remain today however, since the pressed paper was fragile, and children naturally would have removed the toys as soon as they opened the eggs.

When they are found today it is usually as unsold stock that never made it into children's hands, and such eggs typically have the toys still sewn in place, as with this example. These eggs usually had a jointed bisque doll on one side, and tiny toys, doll clothes, or doll accessories on the other. The toys inside varied in quality from the very fancy to the rather primitive, enabling parents with a wide range of budgets to purchase them for their children's Easter baskets.

Keep an eye out for eggs today! Happy Easter!



2 comments:

  1. It's a miracle!
    Always fascinated by these little gifts from the past time ... I want to be a little girl!
    Dear Tracy! Happy Easter to you and your family!

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    Replies
    1. I hope you had a happy Easter too! Glad you liked the egg!

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