Tina Went Shopping

Excellent day today.  I got off work a bit early and went shopping.  Let’s see what I found.


Kay Finch


Kay Finch was a potter in Corona Del Mar California from 1940’s to 1960’s.  She was most well known for sculptures of her dogs, particularly Afghan hounds which she raised and showed.  She had a very whimsical style with quite elaborate molding and paint details.  She sold her business to Freeman McFarlin pottery, which continued producing many of her sculptures, but they now used their solid glazes such as gold and white for decoration.  Freeman McFarlin sold to Hagen Renaker in the 1980s, and again many of their molds were produced with Hagen Renaker glazes, both realistic and artistic.  So you can find a Kay Finch mold with a Freeman McFarlin sticker that was made at Hagen Renaker potteries.  In any case, California pottery is no longer as popular as it once was, and Butch is priced a trifle high at $39.  He was originally sold with a hen, Biddy, but the pairs can get separated over time.  There are several good books on Kay Finch you can find many places online.




Here we have a Hagen Renaker rearing horse, sculpted by Tom Masterson.  When many people think of Hagen Renaker horses, they think of Maureen Love.  Before her horses were produced, we had Tom Masterson horses.  This piece is considered in the Designer Workshop range and was made from 1952-53.  With no stickers or marks on him, you would have to know your history to know who made him.  The dealer did their research as he has the word ‘Hagen’ on his price tag.  Tom’s sculptures were a bit clunky and are not as popular as Maureen’s.  He has likely been in the booth a while, marked down from $125 to $58.  I think these early horses are quite cute, but they are certainly not as popular as many HR pieces.  There are several good books on Hagen Renaker – the comprehensive Charleton Guide and the color photograph-heavy books by Nancy Kelly.




Next up we have a Brayton Laguna rooster.  This company was located in Laguna Beach and was in business from the late 1920’s to the late 1960’s.  The company started with mainly dinnerware and tiles in a single glaze color, and moved into animal and figural ware with many colors and patterns.  Most Brayton Laguna pottery is marked so dealers have an easier time looking up values.  This rooster is probably slightly overpriced at $68 as they were originally sold in pairs, but the booth had a 30% off sale, making him a reasonable price.





Finally we have a set of metal foal bookends.  These are sculpted by Gladys Brown Edwards for the Ray E Dodge Company, a trophy manufacturer.  Gladys Brown Edwards was a respected horse expert, author and artist.  Many of her metal bookends and trophies are marked with either her name and/or that of Dodge.  They may also have stickers on the felt base on the bottom.  Her works, both books and sculptures, are sought-after and very popular.  These foals are on the common side, but it can be difficult to find a pair and they are both in good condition.  The price of $39 is very reasonable.  Her larger and more elaborate sculptures can be very pricey and very hard to find.  If you want to know more there are wonderful books on metal horses and one specifically on Gladys Brown Edwards, self published, at http://www.metalhorsefigurines.com.

My tip for the day – always look up and down when shopping.  You will find hidden gems and something like this:90

This sign was posted on a shelf far above average eye level.  I actually didn’t buy anything here, but I sure spent more time combing the booth than I otherwise would have.  I have found wonderful things high above my reach and while crawling on the ground.  Most shoppers just look at eye level (which is why those shelves rent for a premium in grocery stores).  Even if you have been through a store before, taking time to look around corners and in odd nooks and crannies can turn up things you (and everyone else) missed.

If you are interested in any of the pictured items send me a note to christinaldils@gmail.com and I can give you the name of the malls they were at.  The owner said they may make arrangements to ship depending on the dealer.



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7 responses to “Tina Went Shopping

  1. josephvrusso

    My mom remembers when Corona Del Mar was a potter’s paradise. Your post brought back some good memories.

  2. NancyK

    Thanks for the shout-out! 🙂 Very inspiring post. You California peeps have such an advantage looking for California pottery. I really enjoyed this…thanks, Tina!

    • I tell everyone I can how great your books are – I want them to sell well so you will write more! I will say I have found more California pottery in California, but that stoneware buffalo was from Illinois and Sampson was from Kansas, so don’t rule out other states for fabulous finds.

  3. Mom

    You are giving such great information and the photos help as well. I always loved the California pottery I found but it hardly sells anymore. Hopefully it will be rediscovered soon. Can’t wait to go antiquing with you again!

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