Saturday, October 31, 2020

The Details

Going through my receipts yesterday (I hadn’t touched them at all this year – Bad Andrea!) I discovered why I was feeling so overwhelmed over the past two weeks:

I’ve bought over 100 models in the past month and a half! 

The majority of them came in four large box lots of 15 to 25 models apiece, but a fair share of them also came from Breyer’s recent sales promotions and club offerings. (I am counting the Anniversary Stablemates Displayer as one item for the moment, not 24, because I haven’t opened it yet. This is my logic, and I have spoken.) 

Recent developments have taken some of the financial pressure off me having to sell things online, but having models in every nook and cranny of my bedroom, my office, the bathroom, and even my car(!) is starting to wear on me, psychologically, so I’ll have to do something soon. 

One of the complications I’m running into is that a number of the pieces I’ve bought in the box lots are – or may be – possible upgrades, and that part of the process is going to be a massive time suck. 

I’ll dig things out, compare and contrast, make hard decisions, get lost admiring some treasure I had in storage that I now want to display and then have to choose who goes back into storage. 

One collection I bought is particularly challenging: most of the models are from ca. 1969 through ca. 1974, and some of them have details that lead me to believe that it might be a salesman’s sample lot. The paint jobs are exceptional, and there are some oddities that definitely give me pause – like a partially chalky Saddlebred Weanling, and a Buckskin Mustang with factory painted black hoof bottoms (all four, not just the front two!)

But it’s also entirely possible that this collector was simply very particular about handpicking; many stores were still displaying sales pieces in glass cabinets or behind sales counters during this time period. For those that didn’t (or couldn’t) the clear plastic Showcase Collection was also an option in the early 1970s.

As I’ve mentioned before, Breyer shifted away from gloss finishes and unrealistic colors in the early 1970s due to both consumer and hobbyist demand. They started experimenting with more naturalistic colors and spending more time adding subtle details wherever they could, like these individually painted tendrils in this Buckskin Indian Pony’s mane:

(In case you were wondering, yes, the Buckskin Indian Pony was in that lot and no, you can’t have her.)

Unfortunately, it’s the little details like these that tend to get dropped when (inevitably) production can’t meet demand. This holds true even for more recent releases: this is why I tell people to hesitate just a bit before they dive into customizing the newest/latest molds and models. You might end up doing something you’ll regret later!

Incidentally, if you are looking for something to customize, that’s one section of the sales list that’s (almost) sorted out, so it’ll probably be the first thing I list online sometime in the next week or so. Mostly older Hess molds, Love Classics and some Mestenos, if you’re curious. 


Anonymous said...

That Indian Pony is gorgeous!!!

Anonymous said...

I agree...the Indian Pony is amazing. Unrelated does one acquire all 8 glossy 2020 Collector Appreciation models? Seller on Ebay has all 8 for the "bargain price" of $5,000!

timaru star ii said...

Congratulations. I've had a buckskin IP since 1982, but I've never seen a mane like that.

I prefer the term 'time sink' rather than suck. It seems to me the difference between a quagmire whirlpool and a vacuum cleaner.

Christi said...

I found a glossy alabaster Mustang last month with a few hand-painted mane tendrils. Has some beautiful shading on one side, the other side is shaded but not as much.