One-of-a-kind collectibles are interesting and often not expensive.
In the 1980s, a Navajo Indian made a stuffed toy from a Pendleton wool blanket. Today, a vintage Pendleton wool blanket in good condition can sell for hundreds of dollars. But 30 years ago, a worn Pendleton blanket had a lower value, so it was cut up and turned into a toy. The result was a plush toucan bird that looks like the Toucan Sam logo for Froot Loops cereal. The bird measures 16 by 11 inches.
Allard Auctions of St. Ignatius, Mont., sold it for $115 at a March auction in Mesa, Ariz.
Q: I have a glass quart jar that’s embossed “1776” above the Liberty Bell and “1976” below it. The other side of the jar is embossed “Mason’s.” Is it worth anything?
A: Canning jars like yours were made by Anchor Hocking of Lancaster, Ohio, to celebrate the 1976 Bicentennial. The jars sell for $5 to $10.
Q: My husband was a cartoonist and sometimes corresponded with Charles Schulz. When my husband had heart surgery, Schulz sent him two of his original Peanuts strips. Each one is about 30 inches long and 6 inches high and is signed “Schulz.” My husband has since died and the strips now belong to me and our children. One strip features Charlie Brown and Snoopy, and the other Lucy and Schroeder. Please tell me what the strips are worth.
A: If the strips are indeed original works by Charles Schulz, they’re valuable. Some have sold at auction for $15,000. Make sure you are storing them safely by using archival papers and boxes. Keep them away from direct light. Insure them. If you want to sell, contact a reputable auction house that deals in comic art.
Q: I am thinking about selling a set of Sascha Brastoff dishes. What is the set worth?
A: Sascha Brastoff (1918-1993), born Samuel Brostofsky, was raised in Cleveland but moved to New York City when he was 17.
After serving in the armed forces during World War II, he worked as a costume designer for 20th Century Fox in L.A. before starting his ceramic business in 1947. Sascha Brastoff Products opened in 1952. Brastoff’s earliest china and earthenware dinner services date from 1954. His best-known pink-and-gold pattern is “Surf Ballet.”
Check the mark on the bottom of your dishes. Brastoff’s earliest mark was his first name, hand-painted. When a new Brastoff factory opened in 1953, a stamped mark was used that includes a rooster and Brastoff’s full name. After 1963, the circled-R registration number was added to the mark. An early complete set could sell for several hundred dollars.