Friday, May 15, 2015

The Souvenir Dungeon - Hallmark Party Favors

Welcome to my souvenir dungeon! I have installed new shag carpeting (harvest gold, naturally), so I wanted to show it off. Help yourself to a Fresca.

Since the slide collection is ever-dwindling, it seemed like a good idea to scan some paper items - paper items are my favorites! Most of what I have is not unique... you will have seen similar things on other blogs and websites (like Matterhorn1959's "Stuff From the Park" blog - he has everything). But it is what it is.

However, today I thought I'd share something fun and unusual:  a complete packet of "Hallmark Party Favors", presumably dating from the early 1960's. As you might know, Hallmark had a store on Main Street from July 1960 through to January of 1985. There are a number of wonderful items from that store that collectors treasure these days, including a beautiful set of oversized postcards (maybe I'll post scans of those someday). But this set of party favors seems to be pretty scarce. I've never seen another, though of course they must be out there.

Here's the front of the envelope; as you can see, it is in very rough shape. In fact, it literally fell apart during the process of photographing it... the front and back are now two separate pieces. Bummer. But at least I have it! As you can see, the party favors allow kids to punch out pre-printed, pre-scored paper pieces in order to construct simple, toylike replicas of eight familiar features at Disneyland. It's nice to be able to see what the finished product should look like; I am a big fan of this kind of artsy-crafty thing!

It's hard to tell, but this page would let you build a tiny Mark Twain.

I love that they included an ice cream cart! That umbrella is trying to pop out, but I am glaring at it, so it will stay put.

This fort is pretty cool, I like the four block houses that can be placed on each corner.

There's no Disneyland and Santa Fe Railroad, but you do get Casey Jr.

How about a "Jungle Boat", complete with striped awning?

Coolest of all (in my opinion) is the "House of Tomorrow"!

This rocket isn't as elegant as the real one in Tomorrowland, but it is still pretty swell.

And finally, a groovy submarine that looks more like one of the old Civil War iron-clads rather than a state of the art nuclear sub.

Here's the back side of the envelope... you could mail this to your best pal. I don't know about you, but 75 cents seems like a pretty great value to me.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit to the Souvenir Dungeon!


Monkey Cage Kurt said...

Yeah, the House of Tomorrow really caught my eye first. But I think I like Casey Jr. the best. You know, we could print these out and make them if we wanted to.

Thank you Major!

Oh, and you need to make sure you have enough slides to make it to your ten year anniversary. Ration them or something.

Nanook said...

Oh those clever folks at Hallmark. In many cases their color choices seem a bit strained, but a little make-believe can solve that issue. These die cuts remind me of a more available Hallmark series of die cuts, called Hallmark-Plans-a-Party. Here's a LINK to a typical example. Oh, what fun-!

Thanks, Major.

Nancy said...

so cool....I dont remember ever seeing this before! once Rachel had a set of cut-outs like this that made famous art-deco buildings in Miami.

looking at the view close up, Fort Wilderness reminds me of the buildings and houses in the Rankin-Bass productions, especially Rudolph! I think that the fort is my favorite. I am drawn also to HOTF, of course, with Tomorrowland being my fave.

is there a year on this? it looks pretty vintage and a steal at $1.00

Im with MC Kurt, try to get to your 10th anniversary, which would be an AWESOME milestone!! :-)

Matterhorn1959 said...

Color me green with envy. That is a great piece. I have only found one piece of this....I know a good home for this. (hint, hint)

Chuck said...

I have some cardstock and an X-acto knife. I'm sorely tempted...

K. Martinez said...

These are wonderful. The Casey Junior is my favorite.

I loved Hallmark in the 1960's. I remember putting together a die-cut punch-out of the Mayflower ship for our Thanksgiving table when I was a kid. It even had wooden masts for the die-cut punch-out sails. Good memories.

BTW, don't underestimate the appeal of what you post. Even if you think it not unique. Some of us might not have seen it and half of the fun is reading your take on the items and the reader responses.

So when are you going to put punch these minty items out and assemble them, Major? ;)

Melissa said...

I think I have to buy a vowel, because O - M - G!!

I am totes into papercraft (or at least I was until I had some trouble with my hands earlier this spring), and my sister has one of those Sillhouette Cameo cutters, so don't be surprised if you see some of these models.

Anonymous said...

I have seen similar items from Hallmark, but this is unique.

If I had this as a kid, I would never have put it together.

Wondering now if I can enlarge your scans and make my own.

Thanks, Major.


Brad Abbott said...

Wow, these are great. The details are perfect, and who wouldn't want a miniature House of the Future!

Based on some correspondence from the Hallmark archives, this is exactly the type of item they wanted to sell at the store. They wanted people to know that they sold more than just greeting cards, and were really trying to push their party supplies line of goods.

Patrick Devlin said...

What a terrific piece, Major. I've never been a collector of Disneyana, aside from the stash of goodies we carefully hoarded as kids. Of course now the prices for a collection in good condition deter me from amassing such treasures all over again.

Funny thing is I just purchased a 1964 (green patterned border) Fun Map on eBay. It's not in the best of shape but I want it for the information, so to speak.

Nancy, those paper model books were by Alan Rose. I've built a few of his models-from-books and they're a real treat as I'm sure you know.

Major Pepperidge said...

Monkey Cage Kurt, well, there’s no accounting for taste! ;-) The 10-year anniversary has become my new goal, I think I can do it.

Nanook, I love those simple-yet-fun designs, so evocative of the era. The paper “honeycomb” stuff that unfolds so ingeniously is a miracle!

Nancy, you’re right, these do have a “Rankin-Bass” vibe to them, that’s probably why they are so appealing! And they weren’t even a dollar, but a cool 75 cents.

Matterhorn1959, I am amazed; I really do just assume that you have everything,

Chuck, it’s funny you should say that; I have another paper item, and it is a “cut and fold” thing. About a week ago I did just what you suggested; you’ll see it on GDB in about two weeks!

K. Martinez, looking on ebay, I saw other similar Hallmark items (amidst lots of terrible junk!), I really love them. I think we had a similar kind of thing, only it was a turkey. Not sure if it was Hallmark though. I will NEVER punch these out! Don’t worry, I am definitely going to be posting the scans of my paper ephemera, even if similar examples are out there on the interwebs.

Melissa, can you make custom designs on those Silhouette Cameo Cutters? I remember somebody I know complaining that you could only use designs that the company provided. That can’t be true! In the case of these Hallmark items, it would probably be easier if you just used an x-acto knife, unless you are going into mass-production.

JG, I really wonder if I would have been able to resist putting these together when I was a kid!

Brad Abbott, that is very interesting about the correspondence that you found; I wonder if there are any other “lost” Hallmark/Disneyland items out there?

Patrick Devlin, actually, some vintage items have gone down in price with the success of ebay. Turns out EVERYBODY saved their guidebooks, and lots of other ephemera as well. So you can probably buy certain things for a fraction of what I paid 15 or 20 years ago. Of course the very rare items always go for premium prices. That 1964 map is wonderful, I was obsessed with those early maps for years. Now I’ve managed to get some super high-quality jpegs, which is great, because I don’t have to unfold (or unroll) those unwieldy, fragile paper items.

Major Pepperidge said...

Melissa, I have always liked the idea of making my own vinyl stickers! Whoever designed those paper party favors did a great job, they were very clever.