21 May 2014

10 Classic and Collectible Disney figurines

The world of Disney – the “magic kingdom” – has a special place in the hearts of many children and adults. Disney has so many unmistakably recognizable characters, and has a long history of creating toy versions of its big-time movie hits. Here are some of the most valuable classic Disney collectibles around. Rare 1938 Snow White dwarfs All of the dwarfs from the classic Disney movie Snow White are here in figurine form. Pinocchio play set Dating from the 1960s shortly after the iconic Disney version of Pinocchio hit the silver screens, this is a complete store-display set of figurines based on the classic fairy tale that Disney transformed into one of its best-known movies. Porcelain 101 Dalmatians These super rare porcelain ceramic 10-piece set have the famous dogs from Disney’s 1960s classic 101 Dalmatians. This set was one of the only of its kind to be sold at Disneyland. Cinderella figurine Another timeless Disney movie character turned into…

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16 May 2014

The shortwave radio has a history stretching back to the beginning of the 20th century. Reflecting shortwave’s community ethos, the technology was actually discovered by amateur radio enthusiasts, with the first successful transatlantic transmissions coming in 1921. The next year, hundreds of enthusiasts in North America had their signals heard all the way over in Europe on what’s known as the medium wave band, which is the shortest amateur-available wavelength. Going the other way, European signals reached about 20 North Americans. The year of 1922 was also important, as it was the first in which two-way communications (think telephone back-and-forth) were heard, when transmissions were made between the North American mainland and Hawaii. By 1924, amateurs were establishing trans-ocean contacts…

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12 May 2014

Boxing great and living legend Muhammad Ali, like many classic sporting figures, has spawn something of a mini-industry surrounding his memorabilia. Arguably the greatest boxer ever – and one who stepped out of the four-cornered ring to take public stances and become an outspoken celebrity – Ali’s artefacts can command big bucks. Here are five of the most expensive bits of Muhammad Ali memorabilia – and some of the priciest pieces of boxing history. #5 “Rumble in the Jungle” fight trunks An iconic matchup between Ali and long-time foe George Foreman, this 1974 fight in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo saw Ali put down Foreman in the eighth round, to the delight of the packed stadium.…

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6 May 2014

You never know if here’s a secret small fortune hidden somewhere among yours and your family’s possessions. But the question is – how to tell what is actually valuable versus what is just old junk? This challenge is even more difficult when dealing with silverware. In order to sell your silverware for a good price, you first need to be sure of what exactly you’re dealing with. There are two kinds of silverware – silver plate and sterling silver. If you remember where and when the item was bought and what the exact name and pattern name is, then you’re going to have to do a bit of work to uncover the true identity of your silverware. Step one is…

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1 May 2014

Of all the fine arts, hand-blown glass definitely deserves a special place when it comes to beautiful objects made by human hands. The technique of hand-blown glass is one of the most personal expressions of an artist’s vision, requiring them to literally breathe life into their creations. Check out these amazing pieces of hand-blown glass. Floral bouquet This eye-catcher sees colourful blooming flower vases extending out in every direction – a real conversation piece made in Oregan. Japanese fishing floats These ones are neat. These glass-blown balls are traditionally made by Japanese fishermen to keep their nets afloat. Though this practice isn’t followed any more, the glass floats can still be found drifting in the Pacific Ocean. The earliest floats were made…

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29 Apr 2014

When we think of flatware, most of us picture the standard cutlery we use everyday. But did you know that there is a lucrative market dedicated to the collection and sale of rare flatware? These exquisite pieces go far beyond the garden variety forks and knives we’re used to seeing in our kitchens. From soup spoons made of pure silver to intricately carved gravy ladles, who knew rare flatware could be worth so much? There are many different factors that make certain pieces more valuable than others: Availability of item Uniqueness of design Polishing and smoothness Roundness, tines and edging Handle construction on knives While hard-to-find designs increase the value of flatware, its overall quality can also determine how much…

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17 Apr 2014

It’s with great pleasure and pride that we announce this year’s recipient of the Toronto Consumers’ Choice award for the best Toronto self storage company. Can we get a drum-roll please? The winner is…Jiffy Self-Storage! For those of you who’ve been counting, this marks the 17th time that the people of Toronto have chosen us as their favourite storage company–not a bad track record, if we do say so ourselves! And it’s all thanks to you, or valued customers who continue to spread the word of our best-in-class storage solutions and services year after year. In case you’re unfamiliar with the Toronto Consumers’ Choice Awards, they’re essentially the business world’s answer to the film and music industry’s People’s Choice Awards,…

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10 Apr 2014

Today’s lunch boxes are sleek contraptions, often slim in design with the latest heat-preserving technology.  The ones many of us used to carry as children often pale in comparison.  But did you know that some of those dorky metal lunch boxes we used to flaunt are now worth big bucks?  Yep, those grainy-looking boxes featuring our favourite characters are now fetching hundreds, if not thousands of dollars. Here are the top 5 collectible lunch boxes worth quite the wad of cash.  If you’ve got one of these kicking around your kitchen, don’t send it off to Goodwill just yet! #5:  The Jetsons (1963) – $1,650 Who could forget TV’s most beloved space-crazed family from the 1960s?  From George and Jane…

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4 Apr 2014

Buttons have been present on clothing for literally thousands of years, making them fascinating, interesting, and, of course, collectible. The oldest button that has been found was dated at over 5000 years old! Buttons this old were typically made of seashell, and were carved into different shapes and attached to clothing as ornamentation – to make it look pretty – as opposed to being a functional fastening tool. It wasn’t until the 13th and 14th centuries’ tight-fitting fashions that clothes with buttons and buttonholes used for fastening became commonplace. Needless to say, with a history like that, there are countless buttons out there with interesting histories waiting to be collected! Before you start a button collection, you’ll want to know…

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31 Mar 2014

Did you know that there are clubs and societies dedicated to the admiration of music boxes? Also known as automatic musical instruments, these tiny melody machines have brought enjoyment to both children and adults for years. Whether it’s tiny ballerinas spinning to the tune of ‘It’s a Small World’ or wintery snow globes set to the tune of ‘Silent Night’, no doubt that these are definitely treasures worth keeping. If you’re interested in collecting unique music boxes, here are some tips to help you navigate through this wonderful world. Get educated There are several sites out there (like ebay and kijiji) that offer up “rare” pieces. But often times, these music boxes are hardly rare and similar items can easily…

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27 Mar 2014

When it comes to guitars, no one does it better than Gibson. The company, currently based out of Nashville, has a rich history that is unmatched by any other musical enterprises out there.  Gibson Guitar Corporation builds one of the world’s most iconic guitars: The Gibson Les Paul. Designed in collaboration with musician Les Paul himself, the solid-body electric guitar was a hit as soon as it hit the market. But before we delve a bit further into the unique properties of the Les Paul, let’s take a quick look at Gibson’s earlier history. 1898: Gibson’s founder, Orville Gibson, patents a single-piece mandolin design that is much more durable than other models on the market. It can also be manufactured…

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24 Mar 2014

The sale and purchase of ivory has been a very controversial practice with activists sounding the alarm over its ethical implications for years. But ivory is a beautiful material admired by millions around the world. Its use can be traced centuries back when ivory was used to make a variety of items from piano keys to dominos to even false teeth. The white material is mainly derived from elephant tusks, but can also come from many other animals including the walrus, hippopotamus and even the sperm whale. Despite its mystical beauty, ivory has been clouded in controversy because of its direct impact on precious elephant populations around the world. The laws surrounding this lucrative trade is complex and often difficult…

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19 Mar 2014

When the Segway—the iconic two-wheeled transportation device and frequent punch line of jokes—was introduced back in 2001, it was thought that it could change the world. After the publication of narrative nonfiction book, Code Name Giner, by Steve Kemper, there was a widespread speculation that the personal transporter would become more important than the Internet. Bezos was quoted saying, “…Cities will be built around this device.” Even Steve Jobs is reported as remarking “This will be bigger than the PC”. Yet, thirteen years later and aside from limited quantities of the Segway being used by police forces and hobbyists, the personal transportation device that was supposed to change the world is rarely mentioned outside the context of a joke. So,…

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14 Mar 2014

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a growing start-up, or a seasoned corporation trying to increase your profit margins, affordable office space is a coveted but often elusive thing in the world of business. Finding a location that has enough space and is also in an optimal business location, can be an extremely time-consuming and wallet draining process. Fortunately, Jiffy Storage is here to help you make that process easier, and less expensive! We’ve got two solutions to help you find an affordable office space: 1. Low Cost Office/Business Spaces for Small Business or Service Jiffy Workspace offers extremely affordable office space, already wired with Internet access, to satisfy entrepreneurs and small businesses who want a quality workspace but without the expensive…

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11 Mar 2014

It’s no new news that James Bond fans are one of the most passionate groups of movie aficionados out there. From this fanship, another group of die-hard collectors has arisen, filled with men and women who will pay almost anything for authentic pieces of 007 memorabilia. Here are just a few of the amazing James Bond collectibles out there: World’s Largest Collection of Cars From James Bond Movies From the Land Rover and Russian T55 tank featured in Casino Royale, to the Audi A5 used in Skyfall, 59 cars used in the 007 series can be yours for £20 million. The collection includes six Aston Martins, and a yacht for extra measure. Plus, when you do the math, that’s just…

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9 Mar 2014

If you’re looking for art on wheels, look no further than some of the motorcycles available on the market today. From vintage-looking pieces to slick rides that look straight out of 007, there are some beautiful motorcycles that are actually worth more than your car. Some traditionalists may say a motorcycle is nothing more than a glorified bicycle. But we’re pretty certain you’ll be impressed by some of the two-wheeled rides out there that command attention on the roads! Icon Sheene – $172,000 If there’s one way to pay respect to a legendary man, then the Icon Sheene has perfected it. This work of art was designed to honour British World Champion Grand Prix motorcycle racer,  Brian Sheene. And you…

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7 Mar 2014

Pinball is a staple in every classic arcade. Invented over 100 years ago, and gaining huge popularity after World War II, pinball machines evolved from simple spring loaded table-top games into the high-tech digital machines available today. Let’s take a look at a few machines that perfectly illustrate the evolution of pinball: Gottlieb Spot Bowler – 1950 Pinball as we know it has a spring loaded launcher, steel ball-bearings, targets for scoring, electrified bumpers, and two inward facing paddles at the bottom of the machine to propel the ball back up into the playfield when it returns down to the bottom. The first machine to include all of these features was the Spot Bowler, manufactured by D. Gottlieb & Co.…

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5 Mar 2014

The concept of restraining devices is an ancient one that dates back to pre-Medieval times.  The hands and feet of those deemed to have done something wrong were often bound so that the suspect could not escape custody.  Aside from criminals, slaves were also bound so they could not run away from their masters during long journeys.  From intricate rope to primitive metal rings, handcuffs came in a variety of forms unlike the simple contraptions we see today. In modern times, the world of antique handcuffs is one of fascination for collectors everywhere.  Although we are used to seeing restraining devices with a lock-and-key contraption, many older versions did not always come with this type of mechanism.  Ancient handcuffs often…

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3 Mar 2014

There’s nothing more quintessentially North American than collecting baseball cards.  Many of us have fond childhood memories of trading our favourite baseball cards for one deemed much more superior.  Whether you were saving a year’s worth of allowance to buy that precious memento at the card shop, or grinning ear-to-ear after finding your baseball hero hidden in that bubble gum wrap – there’s no doubt that baseball cards bring a certain joy to children and adults alike. These collectibles are serious business with some cards fetching millions of dollars apiece.  Although most of them are found in the United States, valuable ones can also be spotted in Canada, Cuba and even Japan.  Rare cards are often the most expensive because…

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