Nov 7, 2014
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Kit Kats from Japan – a culinary collecting obsession!

Japan, being a big gift giving culture has embraced Kit Kats like nowhere else in the world. In fact a big part of their success is that the name Kit Kat is very similar to the Japanese phrase kitto katsu, or “you’ll surely win,” and this has helped it become a great present among students and friends.

Limited Edition KIt Kat from Japan. This one is Koi Kinako Kit Kat (Dark Soy Flour flavour)

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Mar 11, 2014
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Galactic Aliens – Alan Daniels original artwork and his connection to Blade Runner

There are books you read as a kid that stay with you years later. Methodically studying each page and taking in all the detail, etching the images into your mind’s eye. Galactic Aliens was such a book, and as kids it blew our minds. Page after page of amazing illustrations and chilling backstories provided hours of speculation and just enough heebie-jeebies to keep you pondering… was there really something else out there in the universe?

Cover of Galactic Aliens - the book that freaked me out as a kid.

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Feb 26, 2014
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Chu-Bops – Miniature Vinyl Record Album covers with Bubble Gum Inside

A downside to living in the digital age is the decline in the tangible, physical element of owning something. For music lovers, the experience has always been about buying an album, taking it with you and then simply having the chance to look at it while you listened to the tracks. The artwork and the notes enabled you to completely immerse yourself in the artist’s vision.

In 1980 a company named Amurol recognised that and created Chu-Bops. They were miniature reproductions of album sleeve artwork covering a whole range of different bands and artists such as Blondie, Abba, Gary Numan, KISS, Judas Priest and Billy Joel. Quite a range really. All in all, 9 series were produced with some specifically covering Elvis, The Rolling Stones and The Beatles. They were the perfect keepsake to swap and collect with friends.

Back of a Chu-Bops pack and the gum, although it's not recommended you eat it after 30 years.

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Feb 19, 2014
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The Gremlins – Roald Dahl’s first children’s book, 1943.

I collect vintage children’s picture books (mostly from 60’s and 70’s). There’s not a huge collectors base for them but this is definitely changing over time. There’s a charm to the illustrations and stories that isn’t often replicated in today’s book world. Some are classics, like anything by Dr Seuss which is always in print but there’s so many that have been forgotten and people with a sensibility for anything retro and vintage are starting to see this. These can often make great gifts to kids of friends and family as they are a true snap shot of the way the world was.

The Gremlins - A Walt Disney Production and Roald Dahl's first children's book.

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Aug 10, 2013
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Han Solo in Carbonite – Star Wars Power of the Force figures old and new

Ever since the original Star Wars movie was released in 1977 there’s been literally countless collectibles and different  types of merchandise released. If we’re talking what was most popular of them all, it’s definitely the action figures.

Han Solo in The Carbonite Chamber - Power of the Force figure

Han Solo in The Carbonite Chamber – Power of the Force figure

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Dec 18, 2012
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Lark Programmable TV Game and the Pong clones of the 1970′s.

We can look back and see the time when the black and white images of the first televisions lit up lucky homes around the world. It was a revolution in entertainment that the whole family and jealous neighbours would have been amazed by.

So it wouldn’t be a surprise that this would have been the same amazing experience when video games started stamping their mark on the world. Pong and its many clones showed how interactive entertainment was possible and well, the world hasn’t looked back.

 

The Lark Programmable TV Game (TVG-868) released around 1978.

The Lark Programmable TV Game (TVG-868) released around 1978.

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Oct 1, 2012
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Kittens on classical vinyl album cover art. A pre-internet attempt at world domination.

60′s were a time of kitsch. Although it was the height of fashion at the time, designers went a bit crazy – pairing bold colours with the most random objects. Mind you, among garish décor disasters it wasn’t all bad and we can look back fondly for reflection and inspiration at an amazing colour revolution. But besides those interesting design sensibilities, what could this have to do with the internet today? Cats!

From the back of the album sleeve, this details the complete series, 'An Evening of Classical Favourites' from Fontana. Great colours and ridiculous use of kittens and musical instruments.

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Jul 29, 2012
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Sam Raimi’s cult horror film The Evil Dead – Book of the Dead editions on DVD… and a musical?

Evil dead, Sam Raimi’s classic horror film. Released in the early 80’s it was THE horror movie to see. My older brother had watched it and as I was too young, he delivered it to me in his own words. Weaving vivid descriptions of its scariest and bloodiest moments, it was all the nourishment my young mind needed to recreate every moment he described into a terrifying vision.

The Evil Dead - The poster for Sam Raimi's classic horror film.

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Jul 14, 2012
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Alphonse Mucha, creator of Art Nouveau – His life & works published in books and popular culture.

Apologies for the delay between posts!

There’s been a lot going on at work.. new job and have been settling into it. But I’m back now and will continue posting on a more regular basis :)

Ever since I worked at a comic book shop in the early 90′s, I was fascinated by the beautiful and ornate artwork created by Alphonse Mucha. It wasn’t because at the time the comic shop sold Mucha artwork but that his style of work, Art Nouveau, was interpreted by one of my favourite comic book artists, Joe Quesada. Quesada had created some X-Men posters in the style of Art Nouveau and I loved them. Ornate, organic and beautifully detailed I wanted to know more about Mucha and the origins of this art movement. One of the posters is linked in a Tumblr blog further in my post.

Alphonse Mucha was renowned throughout Europe as a master of the decorative art style he created, they dubbed Art Nouveau.

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May 13, 2012
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View Master – Reels of 3D fun and memories for over 65 years

View Master – one of the great toy success stories of the last century. There wouldn’t be many people out there that haven’t owned or at least played with one at some point. It was simple to use and with hundreds of reels created over time that meant there was something for everyone. Today’s post is about Bec’s very impressive collection of View Master reels and viewers and why she chose to collect it.

 

This is the classic red View Master people most remember.

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