Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Marbles 101

You must think that I've lost my marbles because I've become so into them.  But wait . . . I bet I can get you to like um too.  There are various different companies that produced marbles and some are so similar that it's hard for me to differentiate, but here is a quick lesson on what I've learned so far. 


These are the familiar cat's eye. You probably played with these and maybe even got a bagful somewhere.

This is the marble that I paid $10 each for 3 of them.  I found out that they were probably made in Mexico by a company called Vacor and are worth less than 99 cents for all three.  Bummahs!

Here are more Vacor marbles. These are called Mummy and you can buy them online at 25 for $2.99.  I might've paid 25 cents for each at the swap meet. 

Vacor Wicked Owl, again 25/$2.99.  Pretty yah.

I shared this one with you before.  It's one of the first marbles that I ever bought.  It's a handmade German latticinio marble.  I paid $20 for it.

I have two now. This one has a yellow core.  I got it for $35 at Antique Alley.

I also got this one at Antique Alley. I've shown it before.  It was $20.  It's an Akro Corkscrew.  I like the corkscrew marbles because only Akro made them and so I can easily identify them. The colors swirl neatly around the marble in corkscrew fashion and never meet. The more swirls the better.

The ones with just two colors are called Prize Names.

White and orange are common colors.

This one might be called a Snake or Ribbon.  It's so cool how you can see the swirls clear through inside the marble.

This is my favorite corkscrew-type marble.  It's called a Popeye.  I paid $5 for it from grouchy-man George.  It'll have a clear base with white whispy stranding and two colors . . . this one, yellow and red.

Here's another one with blue and yellow colors.

This one might be called a Hybrid Popeye.  That's when it has 3 colors instead of 2.  See the kinda golden band between the green and yellow?  Popeyes on eBay seem to go from $10 and up.  I saw a really pretty one go for almost $100.

This one is called a Vitro All-Red.  Not sure why it's called "All-Red" 'cause it's not.  It's usually one-third red.

Here's another one.

Here's a batch that I pulled from Geri's stash.

These are called Patches. See how they kinda look like helmets?  I don't know what brand they are. A lot of the marble companies made Patches. 

This is also a Patch.  It's a Peltier brand Patch. For some reason Peltier patches are more swirley than angular. The only reason I know that is because there was a similar-looking one at Antique Alley.  It was selling for $20.

I paid too much for this supposedly common Marble King Bumble Bee.  It was $5, but I wanted it for my collection.

Here's a Marble King Blue Rainbow. 

Isn't this one pretty?  It's an Akro Sparkler.  See how it looks like onion skin?

Master Marbles makes a similar-looking style but more in earth colors. They call theirs Sunbursts.

I'm really not sure about this, but I've identified this one as a Ravenswood Swirl because I've seen similar ones identified as such online.  I would love for it to be an older Christensen Swirl 'cause it kinda looks like it too, but it's probably not.

Here's another one. I love the color.

Here's a Moonie.  Not sure what make, but there are faint blue corkscrew-like swirls in it, so I'm calling it an Akro.

Marbles with a black base are called Indians. Not sure if this is really one though.

I think this is just a really pretty cat's eye.

It has a chip in it.  I have several marbles that have similar chips, making them even more worthless than worthless.

I haven't been able to identify this one.  It's red, white and blue.  Isn't it neat?

I don't know what these are too.  Probably old, early 1900's, very valuable and worth $100s.  Hahahahaha.  NNNNOOOOTTT!!!

If you have any marbles stashed somewhere, especially if they look like German Latticinio, or Christensen Swirls, or Akro Popeyes . . . can I be your best friend?


Kalin's Mommy said...

Holy smokes, I think I want to go buy marbles now! However I would only go for the pretty ones, which are probably really expensive! LOL

celia said...

I really enjoyed learning about these marbles. My fav are the German Lattivinio - such delicate details in such a small piece. What workmanship!!!

jalna said...

Hahahaha, funny Mich. Keep your eye out for um . . . never know when you might find a VALUABLE one!

Thanks Celia. I'm intrigued too on how they're made!

Nippon Nin said...

Interesting marble story/history. I was drawn to German marbles. I also love All-red, your description of all the marble are enjoyable.

jalna said...

Thank you Akemi. I'm drawn to the German ones too!

Sarah da Aunty said...


When I am bored and need a lift to my day, I come to your blog site and look and read and laugh and enjoy.

My pal Fay turned me on to your site when I became a Nerium distributor. Your before and after picture for Nerium just cracked me up!

In fact, I know your cousin Gerri from Waialae School (no - I went to Palolo School way before her) because our kids went to Waialae School).

Enjoyed your pictures and lessons on marbles. I REALLY don't want to start collecting something new, but it was tempting when I saw all yours! Just don't lose them - otherwise they going say you lost your marbles, lol, lol, ha ha ha ha. Okay, I know, I know. Bad joke.

Mahalos for the postings and pictures. I hope your Aunty gets better.

Sarah (da Honolulu Aunty)

jalna said...

Awww, Sarah, thanks for taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it. Words like yours give me the incentive to keep up with the blog. And . . . I'll try not to lose my marbles. Hahahaha!!