Although toys of various types have existed throughout history, it’s only since the industrial revolution that mechanical toys have come into their own. These toys have had two lives; first their primary use as a plaything to entertain or educate a child. If preserved, they have then moved into their second phase and have been handed down to be admired by the next generation.
Owing to the rapid pace of evolution since the turn of the twentieth century, each represents a unique insight into the design and function of the machine that the toy replicates. This has been a form of figural automatons which mimicked everyday contemporary life at the time, together with transport from the post Industrial Revolution period such as boats, airplanes, trains, horse-drawn carriages, and automobiles. Because many toys have been regarded in the past as disposable, their rarity has increased. It was over one hundred years ago that serious toy collections started to be put together amongst those that had the lateral vision and foresight to appreciate their historic and social importance. Since then, collectors from all walks of life together with museums and other institutions have been preserving these toys - Vintage toys are now appreciated by an international audience for their historical, cultural, and artistic value.
With the international expanding interest and attention in this field of collecting, fine antique and collectable toys are now regarded as providing a sound return on the initial outlay. As within all facets of collecting, the subject of investment inevitably crops up. Not only do antique toys give immense pleasure in owning and admiring them, but also provide a positive return as and when they are sold, either by private treaty or at auction - Of course, there are no guarantees that a profit will be made, however, in a market where demand far outstrips the supply, the economic conclusions are pretty obvious. Indeed, quality antique toys are now considered an asset class investment and are frequently found in private portfolios.
When considering buying a toy for investment, one should always consider buying an example in original and unrestored condition - These undoubtedly will be the easiest items to sell and move on, and it is always best to think medium to long term, that is 5 - 10 years.
We would of course be pleased to advise on any aspect of buying, selling and investing in this beautiful and magical world of Antique and Collectable Toys.