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.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Bathing Beauties of the Day; Day 44

Misses #414 are another toothsome twosome.  This 3 inch tall china perfume bottle of two bathing beauties is based on a drawing by Anne Harriet Fish (1890-1964), a British artist and illustrator.  Her work appeared in Vanity Fair, Vogue, and Tatler and she created designs for Fulper Pottery and Hubley Manufacturing Company, who made cast iron toys and novelties, such as doorstops.  The bottle is stamped underneath “Bavaria” and is incised “X.F. 269,” “Dep,” and with the William Goebel crown mark. 


  1. Does anyone know what year this figurine is from?

    1. Anne Fish drew similar images of two bathing beauties for the covers of "Vanity Fair" magazine in 1916 ( and 1923 ( She created a nearly identical design for Hubley in the 1920s. I found no evidence that Fish ever worked with Goebel and I suspect that the Goebel was simply "inspired" by the popular artist's work. I would date this piece no earlier that the mid-1920s. Hope this helps!

  2. As we have found, the Incised W. Goebel mark that is on our piece was used between 1935-1950. What you said would suggest its from the earlier part of that period.
    Would you have any idea of a ballpark value?

  3. What mark does your piece have? Mine has the crown over the intertwined "W" and "G," which came into use around 1900. The first Hummel figurines which appeared in 1935 had the incised crown mark, but this mark had already been in long use by Goebel. Value is tricky, because even though this is a scarce piece, it is missing the top, which I assume was shaped like an umbrella. I would estimate in its current condition the bottle would be valued between $180 to $200. The original top could add an additional $50 or more.