Fakes, etc.

I'll begin populating this page with photos of reproductions, fakes and fantasy items as I see them listed on eBay, Etsy and other such sites. Hopefully, collectors will refer to this page to minimize the occasions reproductions, fakes and fantasy items are unknowingly purchased. If you see something on this page that was sold to you purporting to be a vintage item, immediately send it back for a full refund. 

WICKED WITCH ON BROOM DOORSTOP Cast Iron Pumpkins Halloween Vintage

This is a new item, almost certainly made off-shore within the past year. It is nicely detailed and would be fun to have as part of a contemporary display, but it isn't old. The detailing is too fluid and the appearance of the reverse is inconsistent with the one truly vintage Halloween doorstop I have seen in person - a haunted house. 

VINTAGE HITCHY-WITCHY COLLECTIBLE HALLOWEEN SKILL GAME

This is a poorly done fake, characteristic of so many of the items this seller offers. This seller has been on my list of those with whom I do not do business for many years. It seems that every "vintage" Halloween item this person offers is problematic. They used to sell these with no verbiage on the handle. I pointed out this deception in my references. Now I see this seller has made what looks to be a very poor copy of the verbiage and transferred it to the handle somehow. On genuine items, the wording is bold and clear, unlike the muddled mess this fake shows. Even the borders of the handle are poorly done. I'm sorry to see someone wasted $36.52 on this POS. If you're a reader, get your money returned! 

Large vintage Halloween paper mache pouncing black cat decoration 1930’s-1940’s

This is the second one of these "vintage" cats that has been listed in the last 10 days. This was made off-shore somewhere - probably China - perhaps as recently as last week. It has all the styling panache that one would expect from a poorly designed POS. Please don't make the mistake some poor soul recently made and purchase one of these for more than its decorative value - $14.99. 

Antique Germany Paper Pulp Painted Orange Pumpkin JOL Red Nose Pipe Noisemaker

This fantasy item is one of a set of at least 4 that began appearing in the mid-1990s. These are often sold with a truly vintage box, with this ersatz marriage meant to fool the unsuspecting. Don't be one of those. Run, don't walk away from any dealer selling these as anything other than what they are - products made no earlier than 1995.  

WONDERFUL VINTAGE GERMAN DAPPER BLACK CAT ON PUMPKIN CANDY CONTAINER

As the seller intimates, this is a reproduction. (I could tell the moment I saw the photo.) As written in the caption of the real deal shown on page 69: "Reproduced versions of this container with a smaller pumpkin base were made beginning in the mid-1990s. These new versions tend to be heavier and lack the detailing of the originals." This item has no collectible value and is certainly worth nothing close to what this seller has established as the opening price. 

08/16 Update: I was sorry to see some poor sap wasted $172.38 on this reproduction. 

Vintage Halloween DOUBLE SIDED Pumpkin Gingerbread Man Candy Container German

There is no record of this design existing prior to the mid-1990s. The seller states that he or she bought it in Ohio in the 1980s, but this recollection is not correct. This uninteresting design was among the crapalanche of reproductions and fakes that began plaguing our hobby in the mid-1990s when manufacturers began to realize the truly vintage German candy containers were bringing strong dollars. There were few references (and no web sites) back then to steer collectors away from such garbage. Don't be fooled!

old Vintage Paper Mache clay? Halloween BLACK CAT CANDY Bucket Antique MARKED HS

This item was made by Stamm House no earlier than the mid-1990s. They were known for their solid craftsmanship. Based on old molds, their designs characteristically featured strong detailing, bright inserts and faux wear. Although these new items definitely have good value in the secondary market, $89 seems an excessive price to pay when the truly vintage item the mold was derived from can be had for not much more. 

Vintage Halloween Candle Holder Scary JOL

This is a poorly made fake. Tip-offs include overly large eyes, bright inserts, ridged nose, air-brushed features, bent-metal candle insert rather than a stamped circular form and weird protrusions at the bottom. I haven't seen this particular iteration before, so it just proves that new fakes are being made all the time. Caveat Emptor! 

06/26 Update: I was sorry to see somebody wasted $53 on this POS. 

Antique PAPER MACHE HALLOWEEN PUMPKIN w/PAPER INSERT

Unfortunately, the buyer of this item flushed money down the drain in the belief that this was as described - antique - when it was made in the last 10-15 years. This is one of the styles issued by Jamieson Studios of Canton, Ohio. Their output was and is higher-end, but that can't overcome the fact that this is a decorative item with no vintage Halloween value. (By the way, why would anyone bid on this with such a astronomical shipping cost? I have hefted the one in my folk art collection and it is pretty light-weight!) 

VINTAGE DENNISON HALLOWEEN PUMPKIN HEADS with SLIDING DRAWER BOX

Here is another fake from a seller that has long been on the list of those with whom I do not do business. Curiousimp has been selling fakes for a while, some better rendered than others. Last month, someone contacted me through the site thanking me for highlighting this seller's problematic items. He shared with me the following, which I've lightly edited. "There are a dozen or more Ouija collectors that were victimized. Some boards sold for over $1500 and some as little as $100. Nothing has happened to him. I've talked with the FBI, both attorney generals, local police and others. The only thing anyone can do is sue. He's out of Florida. Even if I win, there's zero chance he'll actually pay. He has been selling fakes for at least 4 years. Not until the hardcore collectors started talking and sharing what they had did it unravel quickly. Curiousimp has been quiet on Ouija board sales but I suspect he's moved on to something else. Before Ouija boards he had and still does reproduce vintage packaging for fireworks. You'll find some fireworks forums that call him out for faking items. Thanks again for helping to get the word out there." 

04/16 Update: I'm glad to see that this travesty brought only $51, although each of those dollars was wasted. 

Vintage Halloween Pumpkin Man Candy Container c1920 Germany MINT

Here is another fantasy item offered by the same seller referenced immediately below. There is no record of this sloppy, unattractive and ill-formed candy container prior to 1995. As that year progressed, this POS began showing up on the holiday lists circulated by people like the late Paul Schofield and by Jenny Tarrant. The only value I can see with this hunk-o-junk is to toss it in the air when conducting a seance to contact Annie Oakley. This is truly one of the worst of the crapalanche that began in 1995 when German "artisans" began making things to fool collectors. 

Antique Beelzebub Krampus Devil candy container / rarity - Germany

This item, like all Halloween items being sold from Germany today, is a fantasy item meaning there is no vintage counterpart. If you scroll through the listings, you'll see this exact devil head being used as part of many items. The Germans have been working hard since ~1995 to flood the US market with these decorative objects in the hope they will fool collectors into thinking they are old. Unfortunately, they have succeeded to a large degree. I visit many collections throughout the US and see too many polluted with these kinds of items. One rule to keep uppermost in your mind as you consider buying things for your collection: if a Halloween item is being sold from Germany, it is merely decorative, not collectible.