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The TV Lamp Collectors Blog » 2007 » September

Archive for September, 2007

Mystery Lamp: That’s one Crazy Rooster!

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007

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Rooster TV LampGosh, I don’t know where to begin. Is this not the craziest rooster of all time?! Without a doubt, it’s finds like this that keep me enthusiastic about TV lamp collecting. The colors, the bold (and seriously peculiar) design… it just doesn’t get any better than this. Actually it does get better. It’s for sale! This gem is now at auction on eBay, and is item #190156629661. Not only that, but it’s being offered by eBay seller, bucksonbay, an extremely dependable retailer of awesome TV lamps and other stuff. OK, I believe it’s time to put our thinking caps on… who do you suppose made this crazed bird? Given that the lamp is absent of any markings, we’ll just have to do a little detective work, hopefully finding stylistic similarities between it and other known lamps. (more…)

Today’s Fun Photo

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007

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Howard Kron TV Lamp Sketch

Here’s something you don’t see every day… a developmental sketch for a TV lamp! This styling exercise was rendered by Howard Kron as he brainstormed the 3-Horse TV lamp for Texans Incorporated. A revealing look into his creative process, the pencil drawing was clearly intended to sort out proportions, as no effort was wasted on details. Texans Inc. 3-Horse TV LampAt this point Kron had established the basic form, the space for the bulb/fixture having also been considered. It’s interesting to note that this early sketch included references to the legs, a feature that was minimized in the final product. The sketch is in the collection of Richard Gunter, as are other sketches of various Kron TV lamps. My favorite of these is the Owl, with both the front and back rendered. I’ll post those in the next few weeks!

Mystery Lamp: Deco-Styled Deer

Friday, September 21st, 2007

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Deco-Styled Deer TV Lamp

This one has peaked my curiosity for a long time. Both elegant and massive (12″ tall and 17″ wide!), it is beautifully designed in a style that I think of as art-deco. (but I could be wrong!) Glazed in chartreuse and emerald green, it is actually too large to have been suitable for many televisions of the day, which could explain its extreme rarity. So who made this behemoth? (more…)

Recent High-Sellers on eBay

Thursday, September 20th, 2007

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Miramar of California Cat TV Lamp$338.33 - Miramar of California Cat

$331.00 - Kron/Texans Inc. Comedy-Tragedy

$192.49 - Claes Siamese Kittens

$152.50 - Haeger Leaping Nude with Deer

$129.85 - Iron Indian Radio Lamp (1931)

$126.50 - Jacquelin Panther (white)

$105.50 - Lane & Co. Swordfish

$100.99 - Lane & Co. Tropical Leaves

$92.79 - Lane & Co. Pink Poodles

$90.66 - Enchanto Dolphins

Lamp of the Day

Thursday, September 20th, 2007

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Claes “Kittens on a Pillow”

Claes Kittens on a Pillow This is too cool… a variation of the Claes “Glowing-Eyed Siamese Twin Kittens T-V Lamp” that includes a pink pillow/cat bed! The cats and pillow are not fused together, the lamp set into position on the base. Although the pillow isn’t marked it was clearly designed specifically for the purpose of supporting the cats, their contours fitting perfectly. Is this rare? You bet your sweet bippy! The lamp itself is relatively scarce, but the pillow is extremely rare. I should mention at this point that the example shown here is currently listed on eBay, and is auction #300153002999. (more…)

Notice to Readers

Sunday, September 16th, 2007

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I’m off to the hospital tomorrow to have a “minor” surgical procedure performed. (Is “going under the knife” ever minor?) I’ll be home same-day, but my recovery speed could put a damper on my posts for a few days…or not. I just didn’t want y’all to panic if there’s a brief, deafening silence!

Lamp of the Day

Saturday, September 15th, 2007

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Three-Cat TV Lamp (maker unknown)

3 Cat TV Lamp This interesting lamp has developed great popularity for what it isn’t… it isn’t a Claes! It appears to be a creative re-working of Leland Claes Siamese Cats, with the addition of a kitten on the left, resulting in a format vaguely similar to the Lane & Co. 3-Cats design. In previous posts I’ve spoken of an unwritten “15% rule” regarding the use of designs from others, and the kitten would have cleverly met that criteria. So who made these lamps? The only marking is Made in Calif. scripted across the bottom, which isn’t much help. My pet theory is that it could have been done by William Hirsch Manufacturing, the company that is generally considered to have made Claes’ designs. I’m of the belief that the designer and manufacturer came to some sort of disagreement, with Hirsch opting to carry-on with modified versions of the Leland Claes lamps. (more…)

Nifty TV lamps Now on eBay!

Friday, September 14th, 2007

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Kron/Texans Inc. Poodle & Pug (white poodle), auction #260160429809.

Phil-Mar Asian Woman (pink), # 110170173382.

Lane & Co. Siamese Cats (2 cat version), #190153041428.

Jacquelin Panther (black, with original stamped marking!), #160157746489.

Cali-Co of California “Bird on a Log” (red), #130153688902.

Gonder/Bradley “Old Mill”, #150161569610.

Hollywood Ceramics Dove (chartreuse), #280152972060.

Leviton: The Light Behind TV Lamps

Thursday, September 13th, 2007

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Leviton AdvertisementI’ve been contacted by many collectors looking for help in identifying their TV lamp, often confused that the only marking they can find is on the switch, Leviton. While the name appears on most lamps, they were responsible for just the electrics, as Leviton was one of the largest producer of electric switches and lamp sockets in the world. Founded in 1906 by Isidor Leviton, the company remains a thriving family-owned enterprise. Initially focusing on gas lighting, Leviton was quick to shift their focus towards electrical fixtures, the arena in which the company was to excel. Isidor’s son Harold was an active part of Leviton beginning in the ’40s, becoming President and CEO in 1965. He served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at the time of his passing on September 8th, 2007. No, Leviton didn’t make lamps, they made them work.

Auction Jargon: What Constitutes “Rare”?

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

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Leland Claes Tigers TV LampA member of the TV Lamp Forum posed an interesting question: what does an eBay seller mean when they call a lamp rare? The cynic in me knows the answer: It means they want you to bid. While eBay discourages inappropriate claims, a term as nebulous as “rare” is hard to control. Actually, it could be argued that all TV lamps can be said to be rare. But does it matter? Rarity can be a huge plus if the lamp in question is also desirable. On the other hand, dozens of TV lamps are extremely uncommon, yet they get no respect in the marketplace. For a lamp to be truly cherished by collectors it first needs to be a terrific lamp in terms of appearance, and preferably from a designer and/or manufacturer that is popular with collectors. If those criteria are met, then rarity only fuels the fire for a frenzied bidding war. (more…)