Painting miniature animals became popular as an art as early as the 1800s and were introduced commercially mostly as animal figurines . These figurines represent various animals, either as collectibles or toys. Historically, the miniature figurines were mostly made of ceramics and lead, and at present are also commercially produced in wood, plastic, and crystal glass.
Bright colored, and hand painted animals are highly in demand as they appeal to all ages. They have too many convenient uses that finding a market for them is not a problem. They are the best choice as gifts, giveaways, decoratives, paperweights, car decorative items, collectibles, and promotional items.
THE HISTORY OF PAINTING ANIMAL FIGURINES
When World War II was just starting, Muriel Joseph of Arcadia, California who was into the business of ceramic jewelry came upon the idea of building miniature ceramic figurines . After the war, Muriel and her fiancee launched Josef Originals, the name coming from a printing error. Figurines of adorable angels, children, and animals were the initial production. The business was so good that by mid-1950s, fake Josef Originals were being produced in Japan.The couple decided to put up a factory in Japan to protect their business by training workers to ensure that the quality of the product remained high, and they did up to the present.
Much earlier before the second world war broke out, George Wade Pottery, a ceramics company in Burslem, England, was already making ceramic figurines since the 1800s. By the mid-1900s, animal figures called “whimsies” were added into their production. However, during the second world war, domestic ceramic production was only limited to dinnerware and teapots and non-essential ceramic items temporarily ceased.
Wade Whimsies include sea life, birds, cats, snow animals,farm animals, nursery rhyme figures, dinosaurs, circus figures, leprechauns, miniature houses, monks, pets, and dog figurines. Intended for children but also appealing to adults, the Wade figurines are now collectors’ items and remain in demand today. Wade figurines are also being given away as premium offer for select Red Rose Tea boxes being purchased. Red Rose Figurines, except the very first, carry one significant feature: moulded parallel ridges found on the base underside. It has already become a distinct “trademark” for all remarkable Red Rose “Wade Whimsies” collectibles.
Red Rose began giving away Wade miniatures or whimsies in 1967. They were part of a limited short-term promotion in Quebec, Canada. However, the results of the promotion were unexpectedly very successful that it was extended gradually covering all of Canada. A “full scale” promotion was also launched in the US in 1983 and to date, an estimated 300 million Wade Whimsies have been distributed in tea packages in America.
Painting miniature animal ornaments today are not only done on ceramic animal figurines but on other materials as well, like wood and crystal glass. The latter is equally remarkable as the ceramic made figurines and have become an excellent alternative both in design and quality. Hand painted animal figurines have also become commercially viable and are sought after as decorative ornaments and for some other convenient purpose.
These wooden and glass ornaments are produced only in small quantities by indigenous artists and skilled artisans having handed down their skills from generation to generation.
Shop unique hand painted glass animal ornaments such as dog ornaments, cat ornaments, bird ornaments and many other