Antique toy collecting is, in many ways, a treasure hunt, and treasures can sometimes be hiding in the most unlikely of places...like this rusty five inch wide tin box.
Nasty looking, isn't it? I'm amazed it wasn't just
thrown out long ago...
But I'm extremely grateful it wasn't, because inside,
where she clearly has lived for a very long time,
was this four inch tall c.1910 Steiff bear and her silver tea set,
all nestled in an antique embroidered silk cloth:
Her tea set is itty bitty: the tray is two and a half inches long,
and the teapot is just an inch tall.
For a sense of the bear's smallness, here she is nestled in my hand:
I thought she might appreciate being out of her box after such a long time tucked away, so here she is all moved into my antique tin kitchen, where she can make as much tea as she likes: