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The TV Lamp Collectors Blog

TV Lamps In Their Natural Habitat… the ’50s!

Posted January 25th, 2008 by Mark

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TV lamps in Florida

Now this is a rare scene… a photo from the ’50s showing TV lamps, lots of them, on the shelves in a retail outlet! These are obviously of the “touristy” variety, made up from shells and sprinkled with plastic figures and such. I haven’t addressed this unique style of lamp on tvlamps.net, but am working to correct that oversight. The picture is shared here through the generosity of Charles Phoenix, purveyor of all things retro. If you haven’t seen his website, well, you haven’t lived! I command thee, go there now.

Hedi Schoop Skyscraper - How High Will It Go?

Posted January 25th, 2008 by Mark

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Hedi Schoop TV LampIt’s been a long time since a Hedi Schoop “skyscraper” TV lamp has been up for auction, but that’s precisely what is now listed as eBay item #180208433121. It’s got a couple of condition issues but presents nicely. This is a rare opportunity to add this spectacular lamp to your collection… auction ends on Jan. 26th!

Update: Final selling price, $688.58

Modern Mechanix, A Website You Need To Visit

Posted January 25th, 2008 by Mark

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I’m going to stray off-topic even more than usual here to share a great website, Modern Mechanix. It includes hundreds of scanned articles from vintage copies (from the ’30s and beyond) of Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, Modern Mechanix and the like, and is a great place to spend a few hours. The blog entries are sorted into many categories, covering transportation, home, television, science and much more. Be warned, it’s addictive!

Fun with Flash…sort of.

Posted January 25th, 2008 by Mark

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I’ve been playing around some more with Flash on texansinc.com, and have added an audio clip to the Howard Kron page. (see previous post) The song that so well represents Howard’s days as a singer, Pedlar of Dreams, was performed and recorded by Corey Ash (Band Director at Howard Payne University) for inclusion on the site, and appears at the bottom of the page. I toyed with different styles for the play/pause/stop buttons, and can’t decide if I like them or not…we’ll see. Creating Photoshop buttons isn’t something I have trouble with, but the implementation of Flash effects, now that’s another story! Before I post the four “designers” pages I hope to make menu page for them, something that will include some image effects that, while crystal clear in my mind, are going to put my Flash skills (or the lack thereof) to the test. Any Flash pros out there that would care to volunteer their assistance?

Howard Kron Biography

Posted January 17th, 2008 by Mark

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I thought I’d give my blog readers a “sneak peek” at the biography of Howard Kron that I just finished. It’s one of four pages that will focus on the Texans Incorporated designers, and will be posted on texansinc.com once they’re all done. There’s no link to this from the website yet, but I had to share it… don’t tell anyone! The Designers: Howard Kron

What’s New And Things To Come

Posted January 13th, 2008 by Mark

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texansinc.comI thought this would be a good time to clue everyone in on my recent and future exploits. I’ve been putting a good deal of time into my beloved side-project, texansinc.com, toying around with Flash animation. Since that site doesn’t receive the same volume of visitors that flock to tvlamps.net I’m a little more comfortable using it as a test-bed, a place to make risky changes that might not work properly or simply look bad. (20/20 hindsight and all) As my “bravery quotient” increases I’ll no doubt apply Flash to tvlamps.net as well. At the present time, the texansinc.com header (title graphic) does indeed have a certain goofy quality, and I’ll definitely change it this week. My experience with Flash goes back all of 48 hours, so forgive any “issues” with the pages as I claw my way up the learning curve. Besides the funky moving header on the main page, I’ve also applied a little Flash work to the “71 Fire” page. (shown above) Previously, to view the fire movie footage one clicked on a link that would, hopefully, cause the .mpg file to play from the visitors default movie player. Now the clip is embedded into the page with Flash, a handy play button residing below it. Read more…

Recent Auction Activity

Posted December 23rd, 2007 by Mark

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Hedi Schoop TV Lamp$560.00 Hedi Schoop Comedy-Tragedy
$177.50 Beachcomber Accordion
$163.50 Texans/Kron Butterfly and Magnolia
$160.00 Texans/Kron Sportsman Panther (white)
$129.16 Haeger Exotic Princess
$127.37 Sailfish (blue and pink, maker unknown)
$125.50 Hankscraft Squirrel
$119.49 Maddux Flamingo
$111.49 Mermaid (green…Haeger?)
$104.50 Comedy-Tragedy (maker unknown)
$104.48 Maddux Siamese Cat

What is a TV Lamp, Really?

Posted December 15th, 2007 by Mark

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Jacquelin Panther
One of the main sources of confusion among collectors, and sellers, is the true definition of a TV lamp. The term is used quite loosely, often by eBay sellers that understand how avidly that category is watched. So, in the strictest sense, what constitutes a TV lamp? I’ll start with the Jacquelin panther shown above, as I consider it to be the very essence of the genre, the style that immediately comes to mind for most people. The attributes that make this a classic TV lamp are simple: It dates from the ’50s, it is ceramic, it provides back-lighting, it represents a popular mid-century theme (the panther was one of several “exotic” icons of the day) and it was designed and marketed specifically for use atop the family television. This is a TV lamp in its purest form, no question. But there are others, many others that meet the criteria.  Read more…

Kron Design Sketch

Posted December 12th, 2007 by Mark

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Kron Circus Horse SketchMaybe it’s just me, but I find TV lamp design sketches fascinating, if for no other reason than their extreme rarity. This one, in the collection of Richard Gunter, is a layout sketch by Howard Kron for the Circus Horse TV lamp. The lamp, manufactured by Texans Incorporated, follows this drawing with little deviation. This was clearly a final sketch, with the basic concept having been sorted out in other drawings. A great deal of precision and detail has been applied here and, although it doesn’t appear to exist today, I suspect that a similar rendering was done of the back as well. Designers put a huge amount of work into preparing a lamp for production, with proportions, size, mold design and glaze formulations all taken into account. A larger version of this sketch, as well as several other Kron drawings, will eventually appear on texansinc.com.

Where’s the Websites?

Posted December 11th, 2007 by Mark

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This is just personal ramblings, and way off topic, but I’ve got to ask: Where are all the collector websites? All sorts of vintage artifacts are collected, from wall pockets to jigger glasses to stereoscopic viewers, and it baffles me that no one has created websites dedicated to the them. Am I just crazy for posting hundreds of pages on TV lamps? Obviously there’s many enthusiastic TV lamp collectors around, but aren’t there plenty of Rosemeade collectors? Where’s the website? Over the past years tvlamps.net has become hugely popular, and it’s occurred to me that the reason could be because it’s different… an in-depth, perhaps obsessive, website. I’m certainly not doing anything difficult. Anyone that is passionate about a thing can share their interest. On-line commerce will always be the prime user of internet bandwidth, but one can only hope that more collectors/hobbyists will step up and contribute. One doesn’t have to be a computer genius (I’m not), or even have a plan (I didn’t). It just takes enthusiasm.