MBL's Blog

Mark B. Ledenbach's vintage Halloween collectibles blog.

Very rare Halloween - Pumpkin head and the death playing with the devil

This is a cool item with an interesting concept, but it is not a vintage piece. The two heads are patterned after two of a set of eight well-known fantasy lanterns that were first imported from Germany in the 1990s. The Germans did not celebrate Halloween until relatively recently, so everything made from pre-WWI through the 1960s was made for export. Nothing was kept, so when a dealer tells you that something was found in a warehouse in what was East Germany, or some such tall tale, simply laugh in their face and scuttle away. 

2014 Third Edition of Vintage Halloween Collectibles Now Available!

I am thrilled that the publication of my new edition of Vintage Halloween Collectibleshas been so well received!  The 2014 third edition represents a thorough revising and a significant expansion of the seven year old second edition. It contains nearly 550 new photographs showing over 600 new items, all in full color. The page count has increased by nearly 50, with each and every of the third edition’s 301 pages freshly designed and laid out. (This is not an example of an author simply slapping a new cover over stale material.) The great majority of the new items shown have never appeared in other books on vintage Halloween.  If you enjoy the amazing creativity, the rich design elements and the history of Halloween collectibles as so many of us do –  you will love browsing the pages and viewing the thousands of items that may bring back warm memories of your own holidays past. If you are an advanced enthusiast seeking information about the rarest of the rare, you will find many items you most-likely have never seen before. The research scholarship contained within this third edition of Vintage Halloween Collectibles greatly expands the boundaries of knowledge available to collectors, making this enhanced reference work a must-have addition to the libraries of collectors at all levels.  I have retained those data-rich elements you have come to expect from my years of collecting, researching and writing about the incredible memorabilia related to this fun holiday. Each professionally photographed item is fully captioned - including data such as where the item was made, which company made it, when it was made, manufacturing marks, measurements to the nearest 1/4 inch, a Relative Scarcity Index number, a current market value and additional notes on reproduction alerts, item iterations and other informative data. I have worked hard to greatly expand the specificity of the captioning with virtually every item attributed to a specific manufacturer.  I was fortunate to have Matthew Kirscht, a New Orleans-based fine artist with an international reputation for Halloween-themed artwork, not only design each page, making the layout more engaging and logical, but also to have him contribute customized, supplemental artwork throughout the book that lends it a fresh look given his distinctive style. (You may know Matthew by his business name, Shiverbones.) You won’t find generic clip-art anywhere in this new edition.  Both softcover and hardcover versions are now available. Order now! (The images all have a “watermark” of my initials. Don’t worry - these initials don’t appear on the actual cover or pages.) Softcover Edition Signed softcovers are $45, which includes domestic Media Rate shipping. Alternatively, if you’d like your softcover copy sent via domestic Priority Mail, the cost is $54. (If you are a California resident, please include an additional 8% or provide a valid CA resale number.) While supplies last, I am including a copy of the 2007 second edition with all softcover orders, so order now.  Limited Edition Hardcover and Kirscht Postcard A hardcover version of the book is available, although hardcovers were limited to an edition of only 100 copies. (Less than 40 are now available for sale.) Each hardcover copy will be hand signed and numbered by me and will include a postcard drawn by Matthew Kirscht, hand signed and numbered by him, commemorating his involvement with the book. (The title of the postcard is The Deadline.) The postcards were also limited to an edition of 100. The number of the book and the number of the postcard sent will match and will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Hardcovers are $125 which includes domestic Priority Mail shipping. When they’re gone, they’re gone for good. (If you are a California resident, please include an additional 8% or provide a valid CA resale number.) How to Order I love personal checks and money orders, but if you wish to use Paypal, please do so without a fee, or simply add 3.25% to your total order to compensate for an unavoidable fee. Checks and money orders can be sent to my mailing address below; Paypal transfers to the email address listed below. Mark B. Ledenbach P.O. Box 2421 Orangevale, CA 95662 marlede@sbcglobal.net I am so grateful for the positive book reviews I have received from collectors at all levels from around the world. I hope you enjoy Vintage Halloween Collectibles as much as I have enjoyed creating it! Spread the word to fellow collectors! 

I am thrilled that the publication of my new edition of Vintage Halloween Collectibleshas been so well received! 

The 2014 third edition represents a thorough revising and a significant expansion of the seven year old second edition. It contains nearly 550 new photographs showing over 600 new items, all in full color. The page count has increased by nearly 50, with each and every of the third edition’s 301 pages freshly designed and laid out. (This is not an example of an author simply slapping a new cover over stale material.) The great majority of the new items shown have never appeared in other books on vintage Halloween. 

If you enjoy the amazing creativity, the rich design elements and the history of Halloween collectibles as so many of us do –  you will love browsing the pages and viewing the thousands of items that may bring back warm memories of your own holidays past. If you are an advanced enthusiast seeking information about the rarest of the rare, you will find many items you most-likely have never seen before.

The research scholarship contained within this third edition of Vintage Halloween Collectibles greatly expands the boundaries of knowledge available to collectors, making this enhanced reference work a must-have addition to the libraries of collectors at all levels. 

I have retained those data-rich elements you have come to expect from my years of collecting, researching and writing about the incredible memorabilia related to this fun holiday. Each professionally photographed item is fully captioned - including data such as where the item was made, which company made it, when it was made, manufacturing marks, measurements to the nearest 1/4 inch, a Relative Scarcity Index number, a current market value and additional notes on reproduction alerts, item iterations and other informative data. I have worked hard to greatly expand the specificity of the captioning with virtually every item attributed to a specific manufacturer. 

I was fortunate to have Matthew Kirscht, a New Orleans-based fine artist with an international reputation for Halloween-themed artwork, not only design each page, making the layout more engaging and logical, but also to have him contribute customized, supplemental artwork throughout the book that lends it a fresh look given his distinctive style. (You may know Matthew by his business name, Shiverbones.) You won’t find generic clip-art anywhere in this new edition. 

Both softcover and hardcover versions are now available. Order now! (The images all have a “watermark” of my initials. Don’t worry - these initials don’t appear on the actual cover or pages.)

Softcover Edition

Signed softcovers are $45, which includes domestic Media Rate shipping. Alternatively, if you’d like your softcover copy sent via domestic Priority Mail, the cost is $54. (If you are a California resident, please include an additional 8% or provide a valid CA resale number.) While supplies last, I am including a copy of the 2007 second edition with all softcover orders, so order now. 

Limited Edition Hardcover and Kirscht Postcard

A hardcover version of the book is available, although hardcovers were limited to an edition of only 100 copies. (Less than 40 are now available for sale.) Each hardcover copy will be hand signed and numbered by me and will include a postcard drawn by Matthew Kirscht, hand signed and numbered by him, commemorating his involvement with the book. (The title of the postcard is The Deadline.) The postcards were also limited to an edition of 100. The number of the book and the number of the postcard sent will match and will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Hardcovers are $125 which includes domestic Priority Mail shipping. When they’re gone, they’re gone for good. (If you are a California resident, please include an additional 8% or provide a valid CA resale number.)

How to Order

I love personal checks and money orders, but if you wish to use Paypal, please do so without a fee, or simply add 3.25% to your total order to compensate for an unavoidable fee. Checks and money orders can be sent to my mailing address below; Paypal transfers to the email address listed below.

Mark B. Ledenbach
P.O. Box 2421
Orangevale, CA 95662
marlede@sbcglobal.net

I am so grateful for the positive book reviews I have received from collectors at all levels from around the world. I hope you enjoy Vintage Halloween Collectibles as much as I have enjoyed creating it!

Spread the word to fellow collectors! 

RARE NOS Vintage German Die Cut Diecut Halloween Diadems in Orig. Bag Skull Cat

A faithful reader asked me to comment on this auction. These tiaras, or diadems, are rare enough that when several come up in one lot in near-mint condition, with an original envelope to boot, no matter how beat up it was, fireworks were going to be seen. There was MUCH chatter about this listing amongst my friends during its run, so the ending result doesn't surprise me. (Another reason for my lack of surprise is that I was the underbidder, at a hair under $3,000.) Although I didn't need any of them per se, I would have upgraded several in the collection and probably would have kept the tattered envelope. I have several diecuts that have the same notation of "Shadowlawn" on their reverse sides, so re-uniting them at this far remove of time would have been gratifying. Whether these are truly worth over $3,000 is open to question. A part of me was absolutely OK not being the prevailing bidder. (In my view, the star of the lot was the witch. I've been trying to upgrade mine for many years.) 

Vintage Jack-O-Lantern cardboard Hat

This very desirable continental hat with plume was made by Beistle from 1925-1931. The condition of this particular example seems to be superb! Typically, one or both of the extreme ends is missing, but not with this one. The color seems bright, another plus. On my Relative Scarcity Index, I give this a "2," which means rare. If you'd like to see its companion, please turn to page 238. Beistle has been red-hot on Ebay this season, so it would not surprise me if this great hat ends at a price significantly above the guide value of $200. 

HALLOWEEN BRIDGE TALLY CARD PUMPKIN VOLLAND OLD VINTAGE

Volland, a clever manufacturer with typically understated designs, is sadly unheralded today. This tally is simple yet compelling. Not only is it a straightforward JOL, but in a very small form factor all four card suits have been subtly worked into the overall design - without seeming forced or god-forbid, cutesy. Volland's output wasn't too large. They merged with Gerlach Barklow in 1924, moving their operations from Chicago to Joliet. They were kaput by 1933. 

vntg Halloween witch paper lantern Germany unusual very good/exc. condition

This witch hanger, one of a largish set, is a well-designed and fun item - but oh-so-fragile. The latticed paper comprising the "body" of the witch is delicate and very prone to tearing. One tear and the integrity of the lattice is severely compromised. It is for this reason that I sold the ones I had in the collection. It was simply too stressful hanging them. When they aren't hung, they don't appear to be too interesting, sealing my decision to sell. However, if you have a place to hang these and forget them - be sure to bid on this and the other lots from this set this seller has up right now. All of these hangers were made in Germany in the 1920s. 

Old Vintage Cardboard Halloween Nut Cup Candy Container Holder Dennison 1920's

Dennison issued a set of four of these well-designed nut cups in the late 1920s. They were sold only as a set. Dennison began liberalizing their imagery and using gold highlights during this period, a period that stretched until about 1931. On my Relative Scarcity Index, I assign these a "2," meaning they are "rare." These don't come up for sale all that often. The seller claims they have never been folded. If you like ephemera like this - and who doesn't - don't let the three now up for auction slip by.