Mark B. Ledenbach's vintage Halloween collectibles blog.

Ceramic Pumpkin Jack O Lantern Halloween Candle Holder - Vintage Germany 1970s

Whomever scooped this breathtakingly rare porcelain candle holder up for $29.99 should be thanking sweet Jesus they were trolling through the listings when this popped up. This is arguably the most coveted single item from the many the Germans produced for their porcelain tea set service from 1908 through 1932. Prior to this listings I had seen only two examples in the same large lot that was sold to me many years ago. One has been in the collection ever since, the other, heavily damaged and missing pieces, was sold. I have a long list of people who really want this. I sure hope whomever got it was on that list. The seller was foolish. She obviously had no idea what she was selling, given that she describes this as being from the 1970s. She basically robbed herself of thousands of dollars as I have zero doubt this would have sold for significantly more than SGV given its rarity and how many collectors want it. The lesson to be learned here is simple: If you don't know what you are selling, never list it as a BIN - always use an auction format. 

Rare Vintage Metal Halloween Witch Moon Broom Candlestick Handle

These dual-purpose candle holders could be used on the table or hung on walls as sconces. These surface a bit more often now than they used to, but I've never seen versions where the crescent moon is only an outline. All others I have seen have silver moons. Does this make a material difference relative to value? In my opinion, no. Sustainable guide value is $175 each. 

10/29 Update: The pair sold for $405, somewhat above sustainable guide value. 

VINTAGE 1950's HALLOWEEN Party Embossed Foil Candleholder with Witch, Black Cat

I'm not normally keen on foil decorations as they are typically pretty dull and one-note. This, though, is an exception. Happy Holiday of Battleboro, MA produced this well-executed foil decoration during the 1950s. (A more anodyne company name I have yet to encounter...) Just look at all the design work that went into this great item. The base is intricate and the background scene to the witch busy. The witch is detailed enough that you can even see her skull pendant. These don't surface much, especially in this condition and offered by such a fine seller. 

08/24 Update: This fine decoration blew away my expectations by selling for $118.38. 

Vintage Antique Halloween Candlestick Candy Container Made in Germany

As with so many items being sold by this seller, this doesn't look right to me. It is definitely not a German made item. The Japanese made this design as well, copied after the German design, and this MAY be one of them. I've looked at the photos closely and have compared what they show to the piece in the collection and there are few points of overlap. There is no elegance to the overall design as it appears short and squat. The bottom is crude, nothing like the German example. The top from which the excessively thick wick emerges is not flush, but is recessed, a characteristic that the German items never possess. The handle is overly thick and appears to be rather amateurishly highlighted in yellow. The dimensions are wrong. I know this design has been handcrafted by folk artists recently, so this MAY be of very modern vintage. Without personally examining it, I can't be sure. I am sure of this: It isn't German. 

10/26 Update: I'm happy to note that this suspect item sold for a pittance compared to what an indisputably vintage one made in Germany would have sold for. 

Vintage German Halloween Pumpkin Candle Holder

I understand that this incredibly rare candle holder was offered by the seller for a BIN of $70! How I wish I would have seen that. I would have pounced on it with nary a second thought as this item should fetch ~$525. This was made between 1908 and 1932 and was part of the adult-sized porcelain set, pieces of which are among the rarest of all such porcelain items. I have one in the collection, but would have loved to have had a matched set. I do not understand how someone seeing this offered at a fraction of its value would not have simply bought it, rather than bid the silly $25 opening price. Pretty short-sighted...
In any event, it is heartening to see such a high-quality item amidst all the dreck that has cluttered this category for too long. 

04/16 Update: This ended even more strongly than expected, at nearly $610. Boy, The clueless seller must be wondering what happened.