Sellex canister set

Selex canister setSellex bakelite kitchen canister set
made in Australia c. 1940s

I have posted Sellex canisters previously – but this is an entire set, which is now rare to find. It’s a transfer label, white bakelite set consisting of Flour, Tea, Sugar, Rice and Sago. The Tea label has now been lost- probably due to over-use..but you notice the Sago label is still going strong….I’m just saying.

These canisters would look great in a monochrome white modernist kitchen.

This delicious creamy-white, hard-worn bakelite canister set is for sale; $AUD95

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Red bakelite s&p

Bakelite salt and pepper shakers
made by Marquis, Nally, Eon in Australia, c.1940s

I have previously posted bakelite salt and pepper shakers – twice- first in a grouping of green examples and then in a grouping of multi-coloured examples. Here we have a collection of red s&p. They were made to be included in the picnic basket- an everyday object made in a newly-developed plastic- that wouldn’t break in the great outdoors.

I am very fond of the ingenious design of the first two shakers – the top and bottom separate to reveal the two shakers; and you can see that the screw-on bases were often different coloured bakelite. These shakers were made by Marquis; and are impressed with ‘cat 729’.

The next pair of shakers were made by Nally: they are quite distinctive with black bakelite screw lids; and the last set of shakers- although not marked, are by Eon.

For bakelite collectors, and salt and pepper shaker collectors- you know who you are!

For sale: $AUD115

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Butterscotch bakelite

Alton butterscotch bakelite utensilsAlton utensils
made in Bankstown, Sydney Australia 1940s

This collection features butterscotch bakelite- very collectable; with silver plate [EPSP A1] – which is inscribed on each piece. EPSP stands for ‘electro-plated silver plate’, and the A1 indicates that this is the best silver plate. Enough said!

Alton made cutlery from its factory in Bankstown from the late 1890s until the 1950s. With the demise of large cutlery settings [consisting of forty or fifty pieces] which were purchased as wedding gifts in the 50s for more practical utensils – like Splayds, also a Sydney invention, the factory closed.

From left to right we have: a pair of salad servers, a fish knife and a teaspoon. All relics from one of those large cutlery sets – but all in pristine vintage condition; silver plate is intact and the butterscotch bakelite handles are entire, with no chips or fading.

The utensils are shown on a blue bakelite Sellex plate, also made in Sydney in the 40s. It showcases the butterscotch handles beautifully.

This collection is for sale: $AU75

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Blue and red bakelite

Blue bakelite Sellex plates & red bakelite Helix measuring cupsBlue bakelite Sellex plates
Red bakelite Helix measuring cups, made in Australia, 1940s

Here are the recently found red Helix graduated measuring cups : I noted a few posts ago that I also have a blue set.

When I first found the blue set of three measuring cups – ½, 1/3 and ¼ cups – I assumed that the 1 cup measure was missing from the set. But I assumed incorrectly- it was the 40s and bakelite was costly to produce- so it was considered an extravagance to make a 1 cup measure when you had a perfectly good ½ cup measure that could be used twice!

The blue bakelite plates are by Sellex. I’ve noted before that Australian bakelite manufacturers embraced the ‘x’ in their brand names – others of this period are Iplex and Nylex. The ‘x’ suffix was considered very modern.

Both the blue plates and red measuring cups are in good vintage condition – no scratches, chips or marks. And they are for sale: $AU80 [4 plates & 3 measuring cups.]

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Bakelite picnic & measuring cups

Selex and Helix bakelite picnic and measuring cupsBakelite picnic and measuring cups
made by Sellex and Helix, in Australia c. 1940-1950

These bakelite pieces have retained their wonderful colour, and work beautifully as a set. The set of 5 nested picnic cups in green and the large red measuring cup have an ‘inverted beehive’ shape, and both were made by Sellex. The red measuring cup measures 1 cup on its upper rim, then ½, 1/3, and ¼ cups on the graduated rings of the ‘beehive’.

The set of blue measuring cups are by Helix, and measure ½, 1/3 and ¼ cups. I thought perhaps the larger 1 cup was missing from the set, but apparently Helix only ever made a set of three measuring cups, in this style. It was the 40s and bakelite was costly to produce- it was considered an extravagance to make a 1 cup measure when you had a perfectly good ½ cup measure that could be used twice!

I recently found another set of Helix graduated measuring cups in red- they fit right in with this colourful kitchenalia set of bakelite pieces.

This collection is for sale: $AU95 [and another set of red Helix measuring cups available upon request.]

Red & white bakelite

Australian bakelite spice canistersBakelite spice canisters,
made in Australia 1940s

Here is a collection of red and red & white bakelite spice canisters, all Australian made, in the 1940s.

The front six canisters- two with sprinkle tops, are by Sellex; Nutmeg, Cloves, Ginger, Cinnamon, and one [indecipherable] other. The two canisters at the upper left are by Marquis, and the pair of canisters adjacent are by Nally.

All good Australian bakelite canister manufacturers. All the canisters have screw lids – which are all in good order. The labels to the Sellex canisters show vintage wear- after all, they are over 75 years old.

I have a set of matching kitchen canisters by Eon – also red and white- this colour combination is a winner- see posts, below.

The set of ten spice canisters is for sale: $AUD135

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Bakelite canisters [sold]

Australian bakelite canistersBakelite kitchen canisters
made in Australia 1940s

Following from my last post- here is a selection of bakelite canisters made in the 40s by four different manufacturers: from the top left:

Flour canister, red lid – Eon
Flour canister, green lid- Sellex
Square blue lid canister – Marquis
Tea canister, round blue- Nally.

I do have whole canister sets- and have posted them previously, but it’s also good to mix and match canisters. The canisters do double duty providing storage as well as adding much needed colour. The red lid canister holds takeaway pamphlets whilst the tea canister holds – tea. Colour coding at it’s best!

This set of four canisters is for sale: $AUD85

Retro picnic teacups

Selex picnic teacupsSellex bakelite picnic teacups
made in Australia, c.1940s

I have quite a collection of Australian bakelite – and a representative sample has appeared on this blog – pieces ranging from kitchen canisters to picnic ware. There were ten companies producing bakelite domestic ware in Australia in the post-war period, and I have examples of them all!

The ten companies are: Nally Eon, Helix Sellex, Iplex, Nylex [names ending with ‘ex’ presumed particularly modern!] Bristilite and Tilly. Here we have a delightful pair of Sellex picnic cups.

The picnic set from which these teacups came was a ‘harlequin’ set- a range of four colours which could be mixed and matched. These cups and saucers show the four colours- and since they are in excellent condition- they should how vibrant the harlequin set was.

These teacups are for sale: $AUD50

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Sellex picnic ware

Sellex bakelite picnic wareSellex picnic ware
made in Australia, 1940s

The strong colours of these bakelite pieces are quite mesmerising. I don’t think the plates and bowls have ever been used, as they are pristine, with no scratches and no diminishing of those superb colours. I have mentioned before that yellow bakelite is particularly prone to deterioration and ‘mudding’ of its colour, so this set is in particularly good condition. Ironically for picnic ware- I would suggest it’s never seen the light of day!

We can date the plates and bowls to Australia in the 40s due to the ‘rounded-square’ shape, and the edge fluting. And the plates’ markings, which have ‘Sellex Reg.’ in cast lettering on the underside.

This would make a great starter set for the bakelite collector or enthusiast.  Merry Christmas! For sale: $AUD80

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Bakelite canisters

Sellex canisters & Kanga and roo S& P shakersSellex nested bakelite canisters, made in Australia c. 1940s
Kanga and Roo salt & pepper shakers, made in Japan c.1960s

These Sellex bakelite canisters ‘Rice’ and ‘Coffee’ have been separated from their larger red-lidded set [flour, tea and sugar…] but Kanga and Roo are in their entirety; Roo being the pepper, and Kanga – the salt.

I’m sure someone out there has the rest of the Sellex set – or at least wants to add to canisters already collected. The ceramic kanga and roo S& P shaker set is adorable and in perfect condition. Make someone’s Christmas wishes come true!

For sale: $AUD85

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