Tuesday, August 19, 2014

306. Advertique: MENNEN POWDER TIN

POWDER TO THE PEOPLE! MennenTalcum For Men. Vintage powder tin, 5" high.

The Mennen Company was founded in 1878 by German immigrant, Gerhard Heinrich Mennen, who founded his company in Newark, then later moved to Morristown, New Jersey in 1953. The company's first product was talcum-based powder, an innovation at the time. Its product line expanded to include over-the-counter pharmaceuticals and personal products such as the Skin Bracer, Speed Stick, and Baby Magic products.
The men's line began with  "Mennen Talcum for Men."  and this example dates to the '30s. It was found in a local shop with its content almost full. Areas of missing paint are apparent--the paint on the tin is easily washed off.
The product graphics are still strong and unblemished in some parts, and the front panel even retains the image of the founder. Locally, the brand was overshadowed by Johnson & Johnso, which dominated the powder market. Mennen found a niche with its men's personal care line like skin bracer, deodorants and after-shaves. Mennen was later sold in the '90s to manufacturing giant, Colgate-Palmolive.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

305. Campaign Memorabilia: MACAPAGAL TIN PLATE

MACAPAGAL FOR PRESIDENT! A 1961 campaign memorabilia promoting the candidacy of Diosdado Pangan Macapagal of the Lberal Party vs. President Garcia. 

Campaign gimmicks were not unknown in the 60s, and whe Vice President Diosdado P. Macapagal decided to run for presidency, he made sure his political promise will be remembered by every Filipino every time they set their table: "No more hungry Filipinos!!!". This campaign giveaway--a tin plate printed with Macapagal's name and famous quotation: "I'd rather g to jail than see the people go hungry!"-- was meant to do just that--and, as everyone knows, he succeeded, becoming the 9th president of the Philippines.
Found in a Bulacan shop, the plate is in a remarkable state of preservation--even it's plate stand was intact. I have seen a similar one years before ina Manila shop, a little rusty and dented--but which sold anyway, to my utter disappointment. This time, I would not be denied. Despite the rather steep price, I got this rare gem of a collectible, and a fine example of Pampanganiana, if there is such a term!
True,  Macapagal served the country to the best of his ability--but his term was considered unproductive, even with his Land Reform program. His term was badly tainted with the Stonehill corruption case, and in 1965,  he lost to Ferdinand Marcos--but at least he did not leave behind a country in disarray. The ouster of Joseph Estrada in 2001 paved the way for the rise to power of daughter, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who went on to assume the presidency. Her term was another story.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

304. 1970s FLINTSTONES PREMIUM CUPS

The Flintstones, an animated cartoon from Hanna Barbera Productions,  were a stone-age family from Bedrock, with a working class background. Like modern-day families, the Flintstones, along with their neighbors, the Rubbles, the Flinstones, headed by Fred and wife Wilma, had to contend with everyday concerns like eking out a living, issues in the workplace and at home. The cartoon was broadcast from 1 Sep. 1960 to 1 April 1966, and proved to be the most successful cartoon in 3 decades, topped only by the Simpsons. Naturally, Flintstones merchandising were made by the hundreds of thousands. This 1970 set of plastic mugs are from the popular Chewable FLINTSTONES Multiple Brand Vitamins. The plastic promo cups show Fred Flinstones, Dino and daughter Pebbles. They're about 3.75 in. tall and 2.75 in. in diameter. When I found this set in a U.S. flea market being sold for $5, I could not stop myself from screaming..."Yabba Dabba Dooooo"!

Friday, July 18, 2014

303. VINTAGE PHILIP MORRIS VENDOR'S BOX

We've had this wooden box for years...a 60s merchandising piece for Philip Morris 100s filter cigarettes meant to hold cigarette cartons and carried by ambulant vendors. I don't know how it came to be in the family, but we did have Sarao jeepneys that went on the road with our trusty drivers--maybe this was left inadvertently by one of the cigarette boys. The cigarette boys catered to pedestrians, jeepney passengers and jeepney drivers, hence, the handiness of this box which featured a section for loose change.
Philip Morris Incorporated began in the Philippines around 1955, when it entered into its exclusive licensing agreement with Filipino-owned La Suerte Cigar and Cigarette Factory. Its filter-tipped cigarette became a Philippine favorite. Boxes like these are still made--but the ones I see are either for candies or are of the home-made type, with a covered section for coins that was often shut open-and-close, creating the distinctive attention-getting 'takatak' sound that gave cigarette boys their names--'takatak' boys!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

302. Fire Away! BINONDO FIREMAN'S HELMET

Now here's a pick that I didn't have to pick. It was a freebie from a second-hand dealer whom I have patronized for some time. I never get out of his shop empty-handed, so out of appreciation, he gifted me with this aluminum helmet, painted red and inscribed with "East Binondo", which I assumed was a fire brigade in that Chinatown district. There is a logo: OCR-PICAG AFP, which I found out after googling, stood for Office for Civil relations-Public Information Civic Action Group, a defunct group of the Armed Forces during the Martial Law years.
It's apparent that this helmet has seen better days--it's been repainted several times as seen from the paint layers--it must have been blue before it was red! Maybe this was not even a fireman's helmet before, perhaps a protective gear from the violent rallies that went before the infamous Sept. 21, 1972 date.
There are Chinese incriptions written in permanent marker,on the inside of the helmet. Maybe you can figure that out, as I can't read Chinese. In the meanwhile, I left this helmet hanging on a wall shelf--it's rather off when displayed together with my antique salakots. I may never have use for this, but it's nifty to think that I have a genuine 'occupational collectible" from the Martial Law period!!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

301. Switch It While You Work: SNOW WHITE CHALKWARE LAMP

Walt Disney took moviedom by storm when it screened it screened its first animated feature, "Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs"  in 1937. Based on the fairy tale character, Snow White became a worldwide sensation and it popularized such songs as "When You Wish Upon a Star", "Someday, my Prince Will Come" and "Whistle While You Work". Snow White was the first of the so-called Disney Princess and is the only animated figure that has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Immediately, licensed merchandise were made of the characters, especially the 7 Dwarfs--Grumpy, Happy, Doc, Bashful, Sneezy, Dopey and Sleepy. Snow White too, was immortalized in the form of dolls, gameboards, coloring books, figurines--and one of the earliest is this lamp base. La Mode Studios of New York was licensed to create these lamps made of painted plaster, in 1938. molded in the shape o Snow White. The drwafs too were cast as lamp bases, but the Snow White lamp--with a matching lampshade--remains a favorite. This particular lamp base however is very different from what La Mode created, so I assume this was from a different, unlicensed manufacturer, riding on the crest of the popularity of the cartoon. It bears no copyright date, but is incised with the Walt Disney name.
I found Snow White many years ago in Chatuchak market in Bangkok. Far from having a flawless fair complexion, she has a tan, almost like a morena Filipina. My Snow White came with a glass shade that does not really fit, which I believe to be a replacement. I am sure it can be rewired and restored (I actually repainted the scruffs on her body), and someday...her switch will come.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

300. It's The Real Tin: MECHANICAL READING BEAR

Now here's an ingenious battery-run mechanical toy I've had for years. It's one of my first tin toy actually, bought from a store in Binondo with many old stocks. It shows a charming little bear made from fluffy fabric with a book on its lap. When switched on, one paw--which has a hidden magnet--stamps a metal page of the book, and then flips it over--just like he is reading the book. The book pages have incredible details, showing story titles like "The City Mouse and the Country Mouse". There are no marks on this late 50s-early 60s toy, but it looks Japan-made. The fur fabric has started to fall-off and I am resigned to the fact that it will soon deteriorate--but I intend to keep this toy for awhile even in this state, at least for display. For where on else can still one see a bear that reads?