My team won their hockey game last night, after trailing for most of the time they ended up winning 5 goals to 4. The excitement of the game inspired me to explore the origins of Hockey Smurf. Just so it is clear I am talking about field hockey here, not ice hockey!
Hockey Smurf was first seen in 1981 Schleich catalogue, wearing a green shirt & socks, brown shorts, a light cream coloured stick with a white ball attached to the end.
In the same year in the US, Wallace Berrie displayed their version of Hockey Smurf wearing a yellow shirt, red shorts and white shoes with blue trim. I have never seen this version of Hockey Smurf anywhere so this makes me believe this was just a prototype and never actually released. In 1982 the familiar green shirt & socks, brown shorts was shown in the Wallace Berrie catalogue.
The major difference between the German and Hong Kong ones, are the different paint shades used for the shirt & shorts, along with the colour of the stick. The Hong Kong ones tend to have a dark brown stick compared to cream coloured stick.
There is also a Hockey Smurf with a red & white striped shirt, red socks, navy shorts with a light creamed stick with a white ball. I have often wondered what the origins of this one was as I could not locate it in any Schleich catalogues. Perhaps originally it was made as some kind of promotional smurf. So if anyone knows the origins I would love if they could share it with us!
In the Gian & Davi Collezioni – The Smurfs Official Collector’s Guide that was published in 2013 they also list a couple of others that are considered extremely rare. One of these includes a keyring where the Hockey Smurf is wearing the German colours of a white shirt & socks with black shorts. Another one that is mentioned is considered extremely rare is the one wearing Jo, Cule team colours of red, white and blue striped shirt with blue shorts. I have only ever seen pictures of this one.
Probably the one that carries the most interest and talked about Hockey Smurf is the Karamalz version. This is because it has never been confirmed if they are genuine promotional smurfs or not. Each smurf has brown cap with Karamalz written in white letters on it. A total of five different smurf figurines have been used by Karamalz. A version was made using Hockey Smurf with the green shirt and brown shorts.
I will always have a soft spot for Hockey Smurf as long as my team keeps winning!
Keep on Smurfin
I like to collect smurfs with different markings and paint dots as I believe every smurf is unique and no two smurfs are the same. This one, Nurse Smurfette in particular has caught my attention.
The Gian & Davi – The Smurfs Official Collectors Guide & Der Schlumpf Katalog IV tells us Nurse Smurfette was produced between 1982 to 2000.
Firstly is this correct?
The Nurse was made in West Germany, Hong Kong, Germany and China. So far I have found no references to them being made in Portugal, Sri Lanka or Macau.
Is this correct?
Though we can find that it was painted in Portugal, Sri Lanka, Tunisia and Hong Kong. We can tell this by the different paint dots that can be found. Portugal – Mustard/Sri Lanka – Red/Tunisia – Green & Black
Is this correct?
The WG variations all have a blue dress, white apron. The other details people have noted is that she has a silver syringe & watch, small blue lines on the syringe. I also made a reference to her straight eyelashes.
This variation can also be found with different paint dots. These have included green, mustard and red. The version with the mustard paint dot as matte blue skin and the version with the red paint dot has more of satin shiny blue skin and eyelashes appear to be more curved. The green paint version is similar to the others though has fainter blue lines on the syringe and a lighter blue skin than the others.
The Hong Kong variation is quite different to the W.Germany ones. The Hong Kong one has a white dress, blue apron, red lines on the syringe and a black syringe plunger & watch. Her skin is also quite often described as shiny. With the Hong Kong variation this can be found with and without W.Berrie markings.
It is also possible to find one without any country marking and instead just has the markings Schleich S © Peyo under it’s feet. I have seen this both with a red and paint dot. Not really sure why this was done or when. This nurse has a blue dress & white apron.
What is interesting is that Nurse Smurfette was sold in 1982 in Germany, UK and the USA. This must have been extremely busy and exciting time for Schleich.
In the 1990’s two different versions were produced out of China, with the markings Made in China Schleich S Germany © Peyo 1981 Ce. Once again the difference is with the size of the Ce marking. These look like the German made one as they have a blue dress and white apron.
Sometimes a version can be found with a small and medium sized Ce markings under the feet. This was the case for the promotional one Nurse Malteser that was produced around 2004.
It always amazes me that from one smurf mould how many different variations were made. The attention to detail added in by the painter is one of the most beautiful aspects of the smurfs and this is what makes them so unique.
Keep on Smurfin
Yet again I have found myself wanting to know more about particular smurfs that make up my collection and today I found it was CB Radio Smurf that caught my eye.
From what I have been able to find with CB Radio Smurf is that appears the figurine has been the same mould but the variations are to be found with the radio or the antenna. So far I have been able to find about five different ones.
CB Radio Smurf was first sold in 1982 and in the beginning it was sold with a long silver antenna that was inserted into the radio between his fingers. I am not sure how long this version was sold but it was likely it was only for a short period due to the antenna being a safety concern.
After this CB Radio Smurf was sold with a smaller silver antenna which appeared to be part of the mould. The smaller antenna can be found with or without a thickened end.
When CB Radio Smurf was made in Hong Kong the antenna was painted black and was clearly part of the mould as it ran upside along the arm to the elbow and then extended up past the bent arm. The Hong Kong version also had a brown speaker radio.
Around 1991 Schleich started marking all their smurfs with a small Ce marking. The Ce marking on the CB Radio Smurf is a little odd as it is not underneath the feet with the other markings but on it’s right leg.
The last version of CB Radio Smurf was sold with the French magazine Je Collectionne les Schtroumpfs and was sold between 2004 to 2006. This version of the CB Radio Smurf has a very thick silver antenna and is parted lovely matte paint colours.
The CB Radio Smurf is one of the few smurfs that catches the attention of a collector not because the colour variations that can be found but because of the changes made to the accessories. Obviously it was a popular smurf during these years as Schleich were happy to make the neceassary changes to the antenna to ensure its sale.
CB Radio Smurf was sold from 1982 right through to 1996. Perhaps it has become a thing of its time as the next generation of smurf collectors may not know or appreciate what a CB radio is.
The other thing that I like about this smurf is the position of it’s pupils in it’s eyes. The pupils have been hand painted and appear as if they are looking up at you. It’s this kind of attention to detail that I love about the smurfs.
Keep on Smurfin
Like anything collectible, fakes are always possible. Which leads me to ask the question is the Majorette wearing a blue uniform with red boots – fake or genuine? I cannot confirm whether this is fake or genuine as I have never seen one with the naked eye, so I thought I would throw up discussion to see what others thought.
From my understanding there are two different versions of Majorette to be found. The first version is Majorette standing on light green small round base, lavender boots and baton with Hong Kong markings. The second version of Majorette is also standing on a small round base, pink boots and baton with W.Germany markings. I should also point out this is not including the McDonalds Promotional Smurf made in 1996 with gold boots.
Majorette were first sold in Europe and the USA in 1985. By 1985 smurfs were being sold by Applause formerly known as Wallace Berrie. However the majority of the smurfs sold by Applause have Wallace Berrie markings. It is possible Applause only sold Majorette for one year. Schleich produced Majorette from 1985 through to 1989.
It is unclear when Majorette with the blue uniform with red boots first surfaced. Though like any colour variations you should always tread with care. Because sadly there are always people out there willing to repaint a smurf to make a bit of extra money. As long as there is money to earn by making fakes there will be people making fakes. So if someone can prove to me this version of Majorette is genuine I would be forever grateful.
When I first started collecting smurfs, I was miffed and why anyone would want to buy a repaint or fake smurf. Then I started to realise the importance of collecting these kind of smurfs. It allowed me to build on my knowledge on collecting. In the beginning it began with just reading and observing other smurf collections online. Then I started to collect some, as there is no replacement for handling and observing a smurf up close.
So when I saw this fake of Majorette wearing a green outfit I could not resist I just had to buy her. For me, I could quite clearly see that it was fake because of the shape and feel of the mould along with the dodgy paintwork.
Keep on Smurfin
Jokey Smurf is one of the most recognisable smurfs, whether it be from the comics, cartoon shows, figurines or more recently in the smurf movies, Jokey Smurf is best known for giving an exploding present to an unsuspecting smurf.
This is where your childhood memories can play a bit of a role with your smurf collecting habits. Depending who you ask is this could be a good or bad thing. Good in the sense that it brings back happy memories of growing up with the smurfs or bad as you will go to extreme measures to collect particular smurfs.
For me, I never grew up reading the comics or watching the cartoon shows. I had a soft toy called Smurfee that was loved to death but generally my interest stems from collecting smurfs with different markings. Jokey or Present as it is generally referred in the collecting guides is one with many different markings.
Present Smurf was first produced by Bully in 1975. This early version is found with hand etched Bully © Peyo markings under the feet and unpainted eyebrows. Like a lot of early smurfs made by Bully they made out of softer pvc material.
For those of you interested in different colour variations, the Bully marked Present Smurf are found with an orange ribbon wrapped around a white gift box.
In 1983 Wallace Berrie started making their version of Present Smurf made out of Hong Kong and called him Jokey with Present. This version can be found with a red ribbon wrapped around a white gift box.
Around 1988 Schleich changed the colour of the present to yellow with a red ribbon. As this was only sold like this for four years, this smurf is highly sought after by collectors. Like all highly sought after smurfs, my advise is to watch out for repaints! If you are lucky to find one, make sure that it has the markings West Germany Schleich S © Peyo 1975 and a black paint dot under it’s feet. It should also have a small Ce marking on it’s back.
In 1996 McDonalds in Germany and the Netherlands released the McDonald’s 25th Anniversary Smurfs to celebrate 25 years of McDonalds operating in those countries. As part of this special release – Happy Anniversary Smurfs, Present was made with a yellow present and a red ribbon. Like the others released as part of the promotion each one has the letter ‘M’ embossed on the back of the head.
When one starts thinking of the classic smurfs, Jokey is one that is always thrown up in the discussion. But for some reason they decide to make Grouchy instead. I am sure they have their reasons, but I would like to see a new version of Present Smurf made as I always have a soft spot for a prankster.
Keep on Smurfin
There is no better feeling than making a smurf discovery that you didn’t realise you had. Or when you are out looking for smurfs to add to your collection. When I first started collecting I would often find Drummer Smurf in a squatting like position with red and white drumsticks playing a red drum.
So imagine my surprise when I came across a Drummer with yellow drumsticks. At first I thought that it was not that unusual to find colour variations within a particular smurf. But there was something about this Drummer looked different to my other Drummers. So as habit, I picked up the smurf to look underneath for it’s markings and discovered it was a two piece mould with no markings under the drum.
Had I just come across a smurf that looked genuine to the eye but was actually a fake because it was a two piece mould that shared no markings under the drum. Surely not. The PVC material felt so real and not like a grotesque hard home made ones.
I then suddenly recalled reading about some early smurfs made by Schleich were made out of two moulds. Once again I picked up the smurf to have a closer inspection and found a © Peyo marking on the arm. Slowly my breathing started to return to normal and collector’s instinct started to kick in. It was at that point I knew I had to have this smurf.
When I arrived home, I found one of my existing Drummer’s and started to examine the difference between the two versions. Sometimes it is not until you can closely compare two smurfs together that you really notice smaller differences between them.
The Drummer with red and white drumsticks appears to be squatting behind his drum. You could almost see his knees are hugging the drum. The figure and drum are an one piece mould.
The Drummer with yellow drumsticks appears to be almost standing behind his drum. The drum is a seperate piece to the figure. If you look at this Drummer from a side on view you can actually see how the drum slots into the smurf.
Schleich first made Drummer back in 1966 as a two piece mould with yellow drumsticks. At some stage between 1966 and 1972 Schleich started making Drummer as one piece mould, still with yellow drumsticks. It wasn’t until around 1977 that the Drummer was sold with red and white drumsticks.
If you have a passion for smurfs sold in Australia, Drummer was one of the first ten smurfs sold by BP Australia back in 1979. This is also one of the reasons why Drummer is still easily found today, as they can be easily found in someone’s stashed away childhood collections.
Keep on Smurfin
It’s easy to get confused when collecting smurfs, especially when there are two smurfs that share the same name. Even though there are two smurfs that play the trumpet, both smurfs are distinctly different – thank goodness.
The first trumpet smurf was produced by the manufacturer Bully in 1974 and is generally referred to as Trumpet Player. Like a lot of early smurfs produced by Bully these can be found with only © Peyo marking on the arm or with Bully © Peyo hand etched markings under the feet.
Another lovely quality feature about these early Bully smurfs is that they were made out of a softer PVC material. If you ever get the chance try squeezing one in your fingers and then try squeezing a Schleich made smurf and you will feel the difference.
The Schleich version is often referred to as Trumpeter and is one to keep an eye out for especially if you like to collect smurfs based on their markings. This smurf has the mould year as 1974 but was not sold until 1978 by Schleich. It also has no © Peyo marking instead it has large C in a circle.
The first version was produced with reddish orange pants and playing a yellow trumpet. Shortly afterwards Schleich changed the pants to white and also started adding the © Peyo marking to the smurf. When I first came across the Trumpeter with reddish orange pants I thought that the previous had painted the pants himself. But after a little research I found that this was a genuine version produced by Schleich.
The Trumpeter version sold in Australia was made Hong Kong and can be found playing a mustard coloured trumpet. This version can be found with © 1974 Peyo diagonally on his trousers and Schleich S on his arm. Later the markings were moved to under the feet, more than likely when Wallace Berrie started selling Trumpeter in the USA around 1981.
There are big differences between this 2.0072 Trumpet Player Smurf and 2.0047 Trumpeter Smurf to be aware of when searching for these smurfs. Trumpet Player is standing with his feet together and his eyes are wide open and Trumpeter is in more a walking stance and has his eyes closed!
In my opinion both trumpet playing smurfs are worth collecting because they are quite different from each other.
Keep on Smurfin
After receiving such a positive response from my previous piece on Super Smurf Papa Smurf Teacher it made me think of other Super Smurfs that sometimes can be found mixed up. Smurf in Car also known as Car Driver is one that can be easily found with the wrong smurf figurine if you are not careful.
This was one of the first Super Smurfs sold in Australia by BP Australia and was commonly made in Hong Kong and can be found with a red car and brown steering wheel. The markings are found underneath the front of the vehicle and the figurine is generally found with a dark yellow helmet.
In Europe, Car Driver was made both in West Germany and then also in Portugal. Once again a red car was used but this one has yellow steering wheel. The same kind of figurine was used wearing white pants and a yellow helmet. I do not think they ever produced one with a brown or black steering wheel on this version. It was first sold around 1979 by Schleich.
In 1990 Applause tried to relaunch the smurfs to the USA and introduced the Roll- A-Long Line of Super Smurfs. Though the same figurine was used, this time the car was bright orange with a bright green steering wheel. Sadly these were only sold for a short time and are now highly collectible.
Between 1991 to 1993 Schleich produced a new yellow car with a black steering wheel. For some reason Schleich decided to use the figurine that was originally produced for the Tricycle Super Smurf where it has racing goggles resting on his white hat. Then later on for Log Car produced around 1983.
Every now and then you may find the Car Driver with a smurf wearing a green helmet. This is incorrect as this smurf belongs to Go Cart.
So as you can see it is quite easy to mix up the smurfs and their vehicles whether it be a red or yellow car or go cart.
Keep on Smurfin
In my early days of collecting smurfs, the prospect of collecting Super Smurfs was really daunting. I wanted to confirm in my mind that the Super Smurf came with the original accessories. Papa Smurf Teacher was one of these….
Like a lot of smurfs made in the early 1980’s, Papa Smurf was made both in Germany (formerly known as West Germany) and Hong Kong. Generally when this occurred two different versions were made. For example if you have a dark brown stand, you should have a chalkboard that displays a stick figure along with the word ‘Teacher’ on it. If you have beige coloured stand, you should have a chalkboard that displays a maths equation on it.
The other thing with Super Smurfs is that the smurf that is sold with the accessories should all be made from the same country. The German made Papa Smurf is made out of a red pvc material, so only his chest, face and tail have been painted. The Hong Kong made Papa Smurf was typically made out of white pvc material and painted in dark shiny colours.
So if you have a dark stand with a maths equation on the chalkboard, it appears that at some stage someone has swapped over the accessories. For some of you, this might not be a big deal but for others this is just considered wrong! I know from my own personal experience I want my smurf collection to be as close as genuine as it can be.
The other thing you need to be mindful with Super Smurfs especially the vintage ones is the type of box that was sold with the Super Smurf. Sadly some people swap over the Super Smurfs inside of the box, so it is always best to check. If the box has Super Smurf!! on it, the Super Smurf should be from Hong Kong and if the box has Super Schlumpf Smurf!! it should be from West Germany.
More recently some of the Super Smurfs have been sold without their accessories and sold as individual smurf adding to the confusion with collectors. If in doubt it is always best to check on other smurf collection websites or online smurf shops. If you are still unsure, just ask me the question!
Keep on Smurfin
Do you find that you get confused by some smurfs that share the same name? I know I do and this Easter was no exception especially when browsing over the Easter themed smurfs released by Schleich.
The first Easter themed smurfs released by Schleich was in 1984. Like a lot of seasonal smurfs these were made in Portugal and sold in Europe and USA.
If you like to smurfs with different markings, #20489 Smurfette with Chick is a good one to add to the collection as they misspelt the marking Applause on Smurfette. With this it only had one ‘p’ in Applause!
Like Smurfette with Chick, Smurf with Easter Egg also has the Applause marking misspelt on the figurine. In my opinion this is my least favourite one as seems rather bland compared to the others.
When Baby in Easter Egg was first produced, it was always considered this was a girl because of the pink outfit. For the reissue it was painted in white pyjamas.
Perhaps Easter is the wrong time of year to look out for rare smurfs like Smurf Painting Easter Egg. The first version was produced in 1993 and was released with Baby in Easter Egg. Both were sold by Schleich until 1995 and then in 1996 Schleich produced new colours for some of the Easter Smurfs.
In 1997 Schleich produced my two favourite Easter Smurfs. These were both brightly coloured and had a mischief look and feel about them.
In around 2004 fake Easter smurfs were starting to appear on the market. This has always made me a bit cautious when looking to buy these smurfs. It’s bit like eating chocolate over Easter it is always best to buy the best quality!
Keep on Smurfin