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Mark B. Ledenbach's vintage Halloween collectibles blog.

Vintage Halloween Dennison Invitation THE CALL 1929 Rare

Dennison’s output from these years is top-notch. Their design aesthetic was amazing. It is great to see such a rare invitation in such great condition. This first appeared in the 1928 Dennison Price List pamphlet with a stock number of H580.

11/06 Update: This item sold for a ridiculous $510. Anyone wanting the mint one from my collection can buy it for $500.

WHITNEY PUMPKIN GHOST OWL INVITATION MINT RARE NO RESERVE HALLOWEEN

In my wildest dreams I would not have projected that this rare invitation would have gotten close to $350 much less actually ending at $520.99. Made by Whitney in small quantities during the 1920s, it is one of a set of at least three. The design is pretty darn awesome! Whitney had an odd design sensibility that makes many of their scarce products today coveted by many. Take a look at their boxed set of "Novelty Spinning Place Cards with Fortunes" shown on page 273. That is an odd one! 

Vintage Halloween Invitation Black Cat Driving Witch Owl

The level of detail of this invitation is amazing. This was produced by Whitney during the early 1920s. Because the invitation's clasps are so intricate and delicate, it is hard to find this in near-perfect or better condition. Whitney made a trio of these car invites. While this one is driven by a cat and features a witch and an owl as passengers, the others have different passengers with one car driven by a witch and the other by an owl. The latter two appear on page 280. I am proud to now own all three in near-mint or better condition. 

WONDERFUL 1938 HALLOWEEN PARTY INVITE CARD SELDOM SEEN - UNUSED & NEAR MINT

I haven't seen this unusual invitation before. I meant to place a bid for it but got distracted with other things. The seller, a wonderful person, states that it is from 1938, and it may very well be. The art seems to be transitional, toggling between the extremes of solemnity and fun. (Look at the listless lantern, the scared cat and the harmless JOL behind the blindfolded boy.) I feel it is more likely from the late 1940s. Who knows? What I do know is that whomever bought it swept it up for a good price. 

Vintage Pop-Up Halloween Party Invitation Owl Pumpkins Deputy Cat

This is a very desirable invitation from 1924 made by an unknown manufacturer, although there is a possibility it was Whitney. Know that it is NOT complete. The cat deputy should be holding a folded piece of paper with "A HALLOWEEN SUBPOENA" printed on the front along with a black seal. Unfolded, there are indicated lines for "place," "date," and "hour." I feel that very few of these exist with its original subpoena. 

Vintage Halloween Invitation Fold-Open Pumpkins, Witch Scary Cat, Owls, Bats

I haven't seen this invitation offered for quite some time. This was produced by Whitney during the later 1920s. It is one of their stronger designs. Dennison produced many tri-fold designs, but it was atypical for Whitney to do so. The art is compelling and I like the use of color. (The green bat - yes green - is a truly nice touch!) Small paper has been a very hot sub-genre for about 18 months - and I expect it not only to continue to be so but to get even hotter. These small artistic gems are finally getting the recognition due them. 

This brought an incredibly strong, albeit unsustainable, $90.15. 

VINTAGE DENNISON HALLOWEEN PARTY INVITATION, UNUSED

This is arguably among the very best invitations Dennison produced. I appreciate the many elements comprising what is a tranquil scene. I also like the bold blue used for the cauldron smoke. This invitation first appeared in the 1924 Bogie Book, stock number H87. If you collect unused Halloween ephemera, this is a great one to make part of your collection!  

09/11 Update: This sold for an astounding $211.94! 

VINTAGE HALLOWEEN PARTY INVITATION, 1927 BEISTLE POP UP WITCH WHEN OPENED

Beistle made at least two versions of these wonderful pop-up invitations. This example, the witch exulting over her cauldron, was sold in the late 1920s. (In fact, this was used in 1927.) A significantly rarer version shows a pop-up scarecrow along with three JOLs. Beistle issued this design beginning in the early 1930s and probably didn't make them that long since I've seen that version sold only singly. From what I know, an extant box has never surfaced. You can see the rarer design on page 223.