!!Cuban Fantasy!!

Midwinter Modern ‘Cuban Fantasy’ plate
made in England 1957

Cuban Fantasy! the name given to this fantastic 50s ‘atomic’ design plate says it all.

The plate was designed by Midwinter’s in-house designer, Jessie Tait [b. 1928]- who also designed ‘Cannes’, ‘Bali Hai’, ‘Tonga’ and ‘Patio Hollywood’. Clearly she had a taste for the exotic!

The divided plate has a “permanent underglaze colour, acid resistant, hand engraving” as it attests on the backstamp.  The Cuban Fantasy pattern also came in a vase, cup & saucer set, condiment jar, and a cake plate.

Midwinter pottery is having a renaissance at the moment – collectors are going mad for it. I’ve seen this plate on Ebay for $75. For you, dear reader, the plate [which is in excellent vintage condition] is :$AU55

I’ve teamed the Cuban Fantasy with a Debonair camera from the same period- as are the Observer books. The camera and books are available for sale also on the blog.

Oak bookends

Oak bookends, Australian 1940sOak bookends
made in Australia, 1940s

A lovely pair of oak bookends, lined with green felt – for those of us who still read/collect/store books. The bookends are solid timber, made in the 40s from English Oak grown in Australia.

The timber bookends, though made in the 40s presage the modernist 50s whilst harking back to art deco of the 20s. They are a bit of an amalgam – but then so is harvesting an English Oak for an Australian bookend. If these were made today, there is any number of Australian hardwoods that could have been used.

I have styled the bookends with a small sample of our Observer book collection. Observer books are quite collectible; there is one hundred in the series starting with ‘British Birds’ in 1937 [no 1] and finishing with ‘Wayside and Woodland’, 2003 [no 100.]. They are pocket-sized field-research books and naturally to have all 100 would be a collectors dream.

The oak bookends are for sale: $AUD80

Buy Now

40s bookends

Mulga wood bookends, 1940sMulga wood book ends
made in Australia, 1940s

These 40s bookends are made from Mulga wood- which has been cut to show off its famous bi-colouring, and still has the bark of the tree intact. Mulga wood was used in 1940s souvenir works like these as it is a hardwood –unusual in a native from the wattle family – and was considered ‘export quality’. The wood is heavy and dense and so- makes for fantastic book ends.

With the bookends are part of our Observer book collection. These little ‘field’ books run from 1 through 100; 1 is British Birds and 100 is Wayside and Woodland. Some collectors collect only 1-79 [the purists] ; or collect every edition of one of the series. I like the idea of 100 coloured spines lined up- and we have around 30 or so still to collect. One can buy them from specialist booksellers, natch- but I like to discover them in second hand bookshops across the world [we found one in Berlin whilst there.]

So – the bookends are in perfect condition. For collectors of Australiana, Australian timber, or those who just need a decent pair of 40s bookends- here they are. I also have a marvellous pair of bookends with Mulga wood & pewter kangaroos [see previous post.]

The bookends are for sale: $AU40

Buy Now

Oak bookends

Oak bookends, Australian 1940sOak bookends
made in Australia, 1940s

A lovely pair of oak bookends, lined with green felt – for those of us who still read/collect/store books. The bookends are solid timber, made in the 40s from English Oak grown in Australia.

The timber bookends, though made in the 40s presage the modernist 50s whilst harking back to art deco of the 20s. They are a bit of an amalgam – but then so is harvesting an English Oak for an Australian bookend. If these were made today, there is any number of Australian hardwoods that could have been used.

I have styled the bookends with a small sample of our Observer book collection. Observer books are quite collectible; there is one hundred in the series starting with ‘British Birds’ in 1937 [no 1] and finishing with ‘Wayside and Woodland’, 2003 [no 100.]. They are pocket-sized field-research books and naturally to have all 100 would be a collectors dream.

The oak bookends are for sale: $AUD80

Buy Now