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Lladro figurines and other things people used to buy

(127 Posts)
Freeandeasy Fri 03-Jul-20 17:27:42

When my friend was clearing out her mother’s house a few months ago before lock down she was amazed at some of the things her mother had collected over the years. Some were stashed away in cupboards that my friend didn’t even realise she had. My friend was saddened to find that a lot of the thing her mother had treasured- the tea sets displayed in cabinets etc. - were things she never used and things that nobody wanted any more. She couldn’t sell them on eBay or even give them away. Even some charity shops didn’t want them. My mum is the same. She has a display full of ‘good’ stuff that she never uses. I think that this is quite sad and a pity.

It reminded me of an ex-colleague who retired nearly 20 years ago. She invited me and some other colleagues to drinks and nibbles at her house. When I arrived I was astounded by the amount of ornaments/collectibles she had. Every single space in her moderately small semi was filled to the brim. She had glass cabinets full of Swarovski Crystal and shelves upon shelves of Lladro figurines. They were “ladies” if I recall at the time and they all had different names and it was the fashion to collect them. Different “ladies” came out every so often and some were even “limited edition”. Also, on the walls on the stairs leading up to her bedroom was a massive collection of country cottages. I have always been a minimalist and have never collected anything so I was amazed at the amount of stuff on display.

Coming back to Lladro, I guess it was the thing at the time to collect and to get the new “ladies” that came out every year. My mum is convinced they are worth a lot of money (she collected them too) but once, when I was visiting her at tea time, the television was on in the background. It was an old episode of “Cash in the Attic” and the lady was trying to raise some money for a conservatory. She was so upset when her treasured collection of Lladro was hardly worth what she had paid for them. The valuer lumped them all together at the auction and she was so disappointed to get so little for them. My mum couldn’t believe it either.

To get back to my ex-colleage. She is now in her early 80s and we still meet up from time to time as I sometimes take her shopping as her daughters live a long way off. She often invites me in and her house is exactly the same. I asked her one day if she got enjoyment from all of her “things”. She shrugged her shoulders and replied “not really, it was just something people did”. I found that sad. I believe you should only collect/keep things that totally bring you joy. The only thing I possibly “collect” are my Pandora charms. I never pay Pandora price and always get them from eBay. Some well meaning colleagues for my 60th birthday a couple of years ago got together and between them bought me a rose gold bracelet and three glitter ball charms - “because you don’t have a rose gold one!” The reason I didn’t was because I don’t like rose gold and didn’t want one! I suppose I could have maybe exchanged them but I didn’t want to - as I had built up my collection and didn’t any more. I genuinely appreciated the thought but sold them on eBay for £100. Of course, I didn’t tell them! I also remember my mum buying me a Swarovski Crystal hedgehog years ago. Remember them? They were usually animals and it was the thing to collect them years ago. It was a cute little thing with black eyes and stiff whiskers and my mum said when she gave it to me “you can start your own collection now!”

I suppose, like everything else, Pandora will go out of fashion eventually but I get genuine pleasure and joy every time I wear my bracelets. I have two - one with silver charms and a bangle with beads and have no intention of buying any more. Has anyone collected things over the years that they get genuine pleasure from or has anyone regretted collecting things just for the sake of it that now stay at the back of a cupboard? Just curious - as I said, I am a minimalist and my house contains no clutter. On the other hand, if your house is full of stuff you genuinely love, then that’s different. Horses for courses.

HAZBEEN Fri 03-Jul-20 17:38:03

My Mother was the same about her collections, Swarovski, Poole pottery, Caithness glass etc. When my brother was clearing the house prior to selling it for care home fees he asked did I want any. I didnt but it ended up we both felt guilty getting rid so its boxed up and in his loft for now.
I dont collect anything now although I have in the past. I got rid of loads of stuff when we moved to Spain and again when we came back 10 years later. Now I live in a very small flat so keep things to a minimum.

Namsnanny Fri 03-Jul-20 17:38:09

Wool for me and anything crafty! Not on display though, and I'm always trying to de clutter the stash!

If I collect anything for display purposes it's a few pencil drawings that I love, and one or two beautiful shells.

Namsnanny Fri 03-Jul-20 17:40:12

I love the thought that you and your brother are attached to your mums collection *HAZBEEN!

Touching that you couldnt get rid of it. I think I'd feel the same

HAZBEEN Fri 03-Jul-20 17:45:06

Yes but what do we do now? DM died last Christmas so she isnt here to ask about her stuff. My brother has visions of it being still there when he dies and then it will be his kids problem!
I do remember though the pride my Mother took in it all, showing off any new bits and how she loved it when my Father bought her a special something for one of the collections.

silverlining48 Fri 03-Jul-20 17:45:31

Have always been a bit Of a hoarder. I collected old china, cups, saucers and side plates, plus sets of jugs, also have a couple of Hummel figures and royal doulton too. I have a coffee set which belonged to an aunt, its pretty but never used. Actually none of this is used.....
Then random china bowls, goodness I appear to have found myself another job to do, but just dont think I can do it. Now why that is I have no clue as none of it is really sentimental.

TwiceAsNice Fri 03-Jul-20 17:47:50

I do have a collection of coloured glass animals / shapes a mix of Caithness and Wedgewood and some bought abroad when on holiday. They are displayed on two shelves of a small dresser in my lounge and do give me pleasure and my granddaughters like taking them down to look at. I wouldn’t be cross if any got broken.

I also have a largish collection of Old Country Roses China which is kept in the cupboard of the same dresser and although not used every day it gets used at birthdays, Easter, Christmas etc for meals and afternoon tea. Again it gives me pleasure. Nothing I have is actually kept for best ie never used. I don’t have masses of stuff but what I have does give me pleasure. By the way I don’t mean to offend anyone but I didn’t like the Lladro figures at all!

annsixty Fri 03-Jul-20 17:50:45

I collected Crown Derby paperweights for quite a few years,
I chose cats and birds.
Some were quite expensive, I don’t suppose they are worth much now but I still love them.
The family will not want them so I don’t know what will happen to them.

dontmindstayinghome Fri 03-Jul-20 17:52:07

When my Mum's friend moved from her semi into a sheltered flat I 'inherited' her lladro collection as she had no room for it. Sadly she passed away last year so i'm stuck with it.

I can't stand the stuff personally - in fact I hate any 'ornaments' - they are just clutter to me.

I've tried a few times to sell it on Ebay but nobody wants it, or they want to buy the most expensive ones for 99p, not even worth the effort of packing and posting it!

So it sits in a box in my utility room, I have no idea what to do with it but i feel too guilty to throw it away as she really cherished it.

I don't collect anything but have quite a lot of very valuable jewellery. My children will at least make some money if they flog it when i'm gone!

Calendargirl Fri 03-Jul-20 17:58:15

Oh HAZBEEN I feel for you!

When my mum died, my sister and I kept items that neither of us wanted, as we knew they had been precious to her. Yes, like you and your brother, they ended up in the loft.

But as time went by, I gradually sorted stuff out, some I car booted, some went to charity shops. I knew my own children would just chuck them out without a thought when I die, so what was the point of them cluttering up my space?

This was a few years after mum died, sentiment does wane after time I found, and I haven’t missed anything I got rid of.
Also I hope Mum would be pleased to think that someone else is making use of her treasures.

Witzend Fri 03-Jul-20 18:04:49

Never liked Lladro myself, but I remember a lot of my contemporaries in the 80s thinking it was the bees’ knees.

Who else remembers the little mini china animals, I think they were Wade? As a child I had quite a few of those, no idea what happened to them though.

Calendargirl Fri 03-Jul-20 18:18:37


Re Wade China animals.

I have a snowy owl, a bear cub, an upright bear, a racoon, a (chipped) cougar.

They were given to me as a set for my 6th birthday, 61 years ago!

Auntieflo Fri 03-Jul-20 18:42:49

When our children were quite small, they had a few WADE figures, mostly from christmas crackers. I liked them and bought a job lot from a jumble sale, remember those? Over the years the number built up. Then I got to know a chap who was a bit of a wheeler dealer, and he bought the whole lot.
I haven't missed them one little bit!

My downfall now is coloured glass, but I haven't bought any for ages now. Most of it comes from charity shops, so it will probably return there in the future.

Greyduster Fri 03-Jul-20 19:04:07

I collect a particular type of military figurine if I can get my hands on half decent ones. They’re getting to be as rare as hens teeth but they are actually worth very little and when I go they will probably end up in the bin. I also have a small collection of Country Artists birds (they are by far the most lifelike sculptures). DH calls them all my dust gatherers. As for china tea services and the like, with the upsurge in tea shops, there is some demand for them now, and the prettier ones are snapped up at auctions but not for very much money. To be honest, I used to collect all manner of things, but I’ve pared it all down to a glass cabinet full now! I think the nicest most unusual piece of Swarovski I came across was in a jeweller’s window - a child’s tiny brick cart with a gold towing handle and coloured individual bricks. When GS was born I tried to find one to buy for him as a birth gift, but couldn’t buy one anywhere.

Dollymc2 Fri 03-Jul-20 19:15:12

My mother has a large collection of Royal Doulton 'ladies'
I know personal preference is everything, but they creep me out
I don't collect anything, our home is quite minimalistic and of course, that's not for everyone either
Dad left me his Elvis LP's, two of which are really quite rare and valuable. They are in a drawer upstairs, I couldn't part with them. I fear that will be the fate of 'the ladies' too

FoghornLeghorn Fri 03-Jul-20 19:26:45

Swarovski! I collected the animals about thirty years ago. I moved house in 2003 and I have a box of them in my loft that I have never looked at in all that time. A boyfriend once bought me a Lladro girl holding a cat which was quite pretty but that went to the charity shop years ago. The most awful, ugly thing I ever received as a gift was a Capo diMonte tramp sitting on a bench. My dear grannie thought I’d be thrilled with it. Sadly, it was quite expensive but my goodness, it was hideous.

annsixty Fri 03-Jul-20 19:35:09

The Royal Doulton ladies, once much prized, are worth nothing today.
A friend who had several was told by a dealer that he wouldn’t even offer her a Fiver for the lot.
She was very upset and disappointed.

Freeandeasy Fri 03-Jul-20 19:39:19

Oh My - Dollyme2 - Elvis LP’s?!!! I would have kept those too!! I disagree, I think there will be a strong specialist market for those. Check them out on the internet - even if you can’t bear to part with them now - I’m sure they will be worth loads in the future. Not that you can put a price on your dad’s memoirs, though.

Lexisgranny Fri 03-Jul-20 19:49:52

I think the saddest thing is clearing out homes when someone has died, particularly when the home is full of pieces that had been collected and loved, something that was very special to the owner. A home that was full of love and memories reduced to boxes, with the smallest one being the things to save. We have a few of such boxes that are never looked at, but represent a lifetime. One largish box contains bibles and prayer books going back over a hundred years, which were passed down when relatives died, I am not religious, but I just can’t throw them away. My home is quite minimal - except for the loft!!

cornergran Fri 03-Jul-20 20:06:25

Some Caithness and some Swarovski here plus a few things that belonged to family members. Not a huge amount, mostly contained in one display cupboard. Each one reminds us of a time in our lives or a place we visited. Family things have been photographed with an explanation of why we have them. Our lot know we have no expectation that anything is kept once we aren’t here. In the meantime we enjoy them all. Glass fronted cupboards minimise the need for dusting. Good job we’re all different smile.

seacliff Fri 03-Jul-20 20:06:49

I have a few little silver animals I like, they don't take up much room at all.

I also inherited some good cut glass ornaments/rose bowls/vases from my Mum. They are not my taste but I have them still for sentimental reasons. To be honest I think they will go soon. I don't like clutter. I will keep a vase or two and use them.

I do have 2 old decorated pottery candle sticks from my lovely Nan. I use them and they remind me of her.

I think when people know you have a certain ornament, they think great, now "I know what to get for next Birthday, "and a collection starts, before you know it you have 20 or more.

I am proud we have finally attached the hundreds of old photos cluttering up our cupboards, we are scanning them. Then the originals will go. Our children will be grateful if we can reduce the "stuff" we have now.

rockgran Fri 03-Jul-20 20:26:55

My mum used to collect Pendelfin rabbits. I'd forgotten all about them until now.

sodapop Fri 03-Jul-20 20:27:29

A friend of mine used to collect little cottage ornaments, can't remember the name but they were very popular at the time. A special one was brought out each year and there were collectors fairs where people could buy, sell and swap. Bugging me now I can't remember them.

sodapop Fri 03-Jul-20 20:28:55

My mum did too rockgran then I collected some and now my daughter has them.

FoghornLeghorn Fri 03-Jul-20 20:30:46

There is one item I will never get rid of and that is my Royal Doulton Girl Evacuee. My late Mum bought it for herself. She was a little girl evacuee who was sent away from her home and parents in WW2. It isn’t really my style of ornament but I could never let it go as it meant a lot to her.