Postcard Image

Postcard Image
As the Victorian era passed into the Edwardian and Roaring Twenties, a market developed for bisque and china bawdy novelties and figurines of women in revealing outfits. Although now most of these figurines seem more coy and cute than ribald and risque, in their time they symbolized the casting off of the perceived restraints of the Victorian era.

These little lovelies included bathing beauties, who came clad in swimsuits of real lace or in stylish painted beach wear, as well as mermaids, harem ladies, and nudies, who were meant to wear nothing more than an engaging smile. Also produced were flippers, innocent appearing figurines who reveal a bawdy secret when flipped over, and squirters, figurines that were meant to squirt water out of an appropriate orifice.

Most were manufactured in Germany from the late 1800s through the 1930s, often showing remarkable artistry and imagination, with Japan entering the market during World War I.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Carl Scheidig Bathing Beauties

Marc and Shona Lorrin have just published Volume 7, the second to the last book of their series, The Half Doll. The book includes pictures of catalogue pages from the German firm of Carl Scheidig, established in 1906. This catalogue contains several pictures of bathing beauties

We can now identify this belle in brown as being from Scheidig. Of good bisque and nicely modeled and painted, she is 4.75 inches long and is incised underneath "6727." The catalogue number is "7485," but it is clearly the same mold. Perhaps the catalogue numbers did not correlate to the mold numbers, or the catalogue number refers to this model in a different size or treatment.

Another lovely little lady by Scheidig. The same size as her sister, this flapper is wearing a fashionable bathing suit in crisp blue and white. Underneath, she is stamped "Germany" in black and is incised "6690." The catalogue number is "7482."

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