Cooking with the smurfs

It isn’t hard not to get confused when collecting smurfs, especially if they all share the same occupation. There are at least three smurf figurines that love to cook; Cook #20073, Chef #20042 and Head Chef #20099. Each are uniquely different from each other which makes them worth collecting all three.

The first one produced was Cook made by Bully in 1974. He is the one holding a large yellow spoon in his right and a pot in his left hand. The smurf is also wearing a white chef’s hat, apron and white bow tie. I have also seen pictures of Cook with a red bow tie and also with a white spoon and a yellow pot, not sure if they are genuine or not. Then of course there are also fake versions of Cook to be found. Like a transparent one without a saucepan from Mexico. 

The next one produced was Head Chef made by Bully in 1978. He is holding a raised large yellow rolling pin in his left hand. The smurf is also wearing a white chef’s hat, apron and a light yellow bow tie. I have also seen this one referred to as Baker by other collectors. Both Cook and Head Chef were never sold by Wallace Berrie in the USA. I don’t think they were ever sold by BP Australia either. There are also different Polish fakes of Head Chef with different coloured rolling pins that can be found. 

Also in 1978 Schleich released their own Chef. He is holding a brown wooden spoon to his mouth as if testing the food, while wearing Chef’s whites. The first version sold by Schleich has red sauce on the spoon but this was later removed. Chef was produced by both Schleich and Wallace Berrie. Chef was also sold by BP Australia, possibly around 1980.

As all three were produced by different makers, here are a few things to keep an eye open for when looking to add one to your own collection.

With Cook it is possible to find this with no markings. This was quite typical for smurfs first made by Bully in the beginning. Later they added their own Bully © Peyo hand etched markings; © Peyo on the back of the arm and Bully under the pot. The hand etched Bully marking remained under the pot, most likely with the agreement made between Bully and Schleich until 1984. Cook was produced by Bully between 1974 to 1979 and Schleich 1980 to 1991 then 1995 to 1999.

Head Chef was only produced by Bully for two years but can be found with at least four different Bully markings under the feet. It was produced by Schleich from 1980 to 1986 and then 1991 to 1993. Head Chef was also made out of Sri Lanka so possible to find with Sri Lanka markings or with a red paint dot. 

Chef is the only one out of the three that is wearing a Chef’s jacket. The buttons on the front of the jacket should be same colour brown as used for the spoon. With the Chef made out of Hong Kong it can be possible to find this with markings on the back or under the feet. It is also possible to find this with the year changed to 1980 on the Hong Kong ones. Not sure why they did this. Chef was produced by Schleich from 1979 to 1986/1991 to 1994/1997 & 1998/2011 and by Wallace Berrie from 1981 to 1984. So there are plenty different markings to be found with Chef and then of course there are also the many different fake ones.

I would like to see a Cafe scene produced one day which includes a new Chef, Dish-hand, Barista, Waitress/Waiter and Smurf customers. I wonder what name you could call the cafe?

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

French Fries Smurf

French Fries smurf was first released by Schleich in 1981. In their 1981 catalogue you will see a smurf wearing his customary white trousers and hat while holding an orange chip in his right hand and a cone of orange coloured french fries in his left hand. The smurf’s tongue is hanging out of his mouth waiting with anticipation of eating his fries. I am not sure how long the orange fries version was sold but they are generally considered harder to find. 

In the same year Wallace Berrie released their version of French Fries smurf with yellow French fries. In their catalogues they referred to it as French Fry. Wallace Berrie sold French Fries smurf between 1981 to 1983. So far I have not been able to find a Hong Kong made one with orange fries. But I am happy to be proved to be wrong.

When Schleich started selling French Fries it was found with a small hole under it’s right foot and W.Germany Schleich S © Peyo markings. It is unsure what the hole under the foot was meant to be used for but this was later removed and the markings were changed to include the year 1981. 

When comparing the markings it is interesting to note the year on the two moulds are different, which makes me think that Wallace Berrie made their version first and then Schleich made theirs. The W.Germany made ones have the year 1981 whereas Hong Kong made ones have 1980. 

French Fries smurf was also made out of China. There are at least three different marking variations to be found. These can only be found with light yellow French fries. I also have a version that was made in China where under the feet you can see that they blocked out the original Hong Kong markings. 

Schleich sold their French Fries smurf in 1981 to 1986/1991 & 1992/1995 to 1997 and then in 2000.

Not surprisedly a number of fakes have been made of the French Fries smurf. I have seen a lovely CNT one with yellow fries, one brown fries with a flesh coloured skin smurf from Mexico, but the one that causes the most debate is the French Fries holding a red cone with yellow fries. Is it genuine or is a repaint? Are the markings W.Germany Schleich S © 1981 Peyo or Hong Kong Schleich S © 1980? 

I am always suspicious when comes to rare paint variations. My approach is simple, happy to collect as long as the price is right. Also happy to admit that I am not always sure if they are fake or genuine or a repaint.

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

2019 Schleich Smurfs

What do you think of the 2019 smurfs?

This week I came across a picture of the 2019 Schleich smurfs on the Peyo’s Smurfs Facebook page and also the Blue Cavern Facebook page. At this point of time I don’t know much else about them. No official date has been announced but most likely in early 2019.

At first I thought that they were a combination of previous smurfs released by Schleich and miniature Plastoy smurfs. Perhaps the two companies have gone into partnership with producing smurfs?

 

What do you think?

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

Hot Dog Smurf

In the early 1990s new child safety laws forced the discontinuation of a number of smurfs that were made with separate, removable, parts. These include Hot Dog smurf, Papa with Pizza, Smurfette with Ice cream, Hamburger smurf, Heart smurf, Gargamel with net, Surprise Cone smurfs and many others.

Today I just wanted to talk to you about Hot Dog smurf first sold by Wallace Berrie in 1983. Wearing his customary white trousers and hat, while holding out in front of him with both hands a large hot dog bun, with a red hot dog and mustard. Wallace Berrie only sold Hot Dog smurf for two years 1983 and 1984.

Hot Dog smurf was also sold by Schleich in Europe but only for two years; 1984 to 1986. This was made in West Germany and also in Portugal.

If you like to collect smurfs based on their markings, be mindful that with Hot Dog smurf the markings are on the body of the smurf and not under their feet. So as far as I am aware it can be found with the following markings:

  1. Made in Hong Kong W. Berrie Co © 1983 Peyo
  2. Made in Portugal Schleich S © 1982 Peyo
  3. W.Germany Schleich S © 1982 Peyo

There appears to be very little difference between the Wallace Berrie and Schleich ones except for the colour of the hot dog bun. The Hong Kong made ones tend to have a lighter hot dog bun compared to the Schleich ones which are a darker brown colour. You may also have a hot dog that has more mustard depending if the painter liked mustard or not.

I am always curious to see how smurfs were made when they included a seperate or removable parts. Hot Dog smurf was no exception to this, as I always thought that the hot dog bun was glued to the smurf’s hands until I received this one. In this picture you can clearly see that the hot dog bun is connected by a piece of mould on the smurf that is inserted into the bottom of the hot dog bun. It’s almost like the smurf has an extra finger. This smurf has W.Germany Schleich S © Peyo 1982 markings.

I have also been able to find a Hot Dog smurf with a Schleich CE label/tag written in Italian. This is thought to be released around 1986 when Schleich had a large surplus of smurfs. The other smurfs I have seen with an Italian Schleich CE label/tag include Smurfette with Ice cream, Skipping Rope and Plumber. No doubt there are others out there. 

All this hard work is making me hungry, must be time for a snack. Please feel free to share anything you like regarding the Hot Dog smurf.

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

Carpenter Smurf vs New Carpenter Smurf

Carpenter verses New Carpenter, which one do you prefer? Carpenter that was first made by Bully in 1979 or New Carpenter that was made by Schleich in 2001. Whichever one you prefer may tell you a lot about the kind of smurfs you like to collect.

Carpenter can be found holding a plank of timber on his right hand side and a silver saw with a red handle in his left hand. Depending on the mould the angle of the saw blade can vary anywhere from horizontal to upwards. The other noticeable difference is to do with the yellow paint used for the timber. Some from light yellow to an orange yellow colour. 

Carpenter was one of the last smurfs produced by Bully in 1979. In 1980 Schleich made Carpenter with Bully markings until around 1984. During this time, smurfs would have a paint dot added to their markings to indicate which country it was painted in. So its possible to find Carpenter with mustard, green or red paint dots. After this time Schleich were allowed to use their own markings on smurfs. 

Carpenter was also sold in Australia by BP Australia around the Summer of 1981/82 as seen in the BP Summer Guide 82.  This can be found with Made in Hong Kong Schleich © 1979 Peyo markings.  They must have sold a lot of these as it can be easily found today. 

The Hong Kong made Carpenter was also sold by Wallace Berrie in the USA between 1981 to 1984. 

In 2001 Schleich released New Carpenter. New Carpenter carries a piece of timber over the right shoulder and a hammer in his left hand. Dressed in a navy blue wide brim hat, blue overalls, white shirt and brown working boots. New Carpenter was sold by Schleich between 2001 to 2005 with very little changes made to the figurine. 

During this time, New Carpenter was sold with the same markings Made in China Schleich S Germany © 2000 Peyo CE but can be found with or without a blue paint dot. The blue paint dot was used between 2001 to 2003. 

If you like to know when New Carpenter was produced you just have to check whether it has a blue paint dot added to the markings under the smurf’s foot. In 2001 the smurfs with a blue paint dot were painted with a high gloss shiny blue colour. In 2002 and 2003 they painted the smurfs in more of a matte paint colour. The smurfs were also made out of China at this time. By 2004 the smurfs were no longer being produced with a blue paint dots and were now being made out of Germany. 

I like both Carpenter and New Carpenter as I like to think that they both have their own personalities as they are quite different from each other. So what does tell you about the smurfs I like to collect? Basically I like to collect all types of smurfs. 

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

 

 

 

20076 Courting Smurf

If you’re on the hunt for Courting smurf also known as Rendez Vous you may want to have a look at this list first of things you should keep in mind and not all are obvious!

  1. Courting was first made by Bully in 1973. This first version has no markings and is made out of a very soft pvc material. The leaf is not connected to the flower, making it extremely fragile.
  2. Because of this Bully made a change to the mould so the leaf is connected to the flower. It also added  © Peyo marking behind the flower. The flower on this variation is noticeably thicker.
  3. Around 1976 Bully made a new mould that included a steam behind the flower. I have one where the steam is painted green and another that is painted white. The © Peyo marking has been removed from the back of the flower and the Bully markings have been added to the feet.
  4. Courting was also made out of Hong Kong and has Hong Kong Bully © Peyo markings. Typically it can be found with dark blue skin and is made out of hard pvc material. This variation also has a quite a thin flower compared to the others.
  1. Bully changed the markings again around 1978 to WEST BULLY GERMANY in a circle.
  2. There are thought to be at least two different Schleich versions. The first one has just blocked out the Bully marking in the circle and added Schleich S to the feet.
  3. The other Schleich version was made out of Sri Lanka. It can be found with the Schleich S on the back of the flower steam, © 1973 and Peyo are on the petals. Made in Sri Lanka on the back of the left arm and a red paint dot can be found under the feet.
  4. Courting was used as a promotional smurf. The word ‘Cederan’ is vertically stamped in black text on the side of the smurf’s head. 
  5. Courting can also be found in different colours such as red and yellow. This has always created debate amongst die hard collectors whether they are genuine or not. Buyer beware, some sellers just want to make money and will do anything to pass something off as genuine. Check the condition of the paint to make sure it is not just a repaint job.

I hope this list will become a valuable a reference tool when looking out for Courting smurf. If you feel something is not quite right or something needs to be added to the list just let me know. 

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

20118 Umbrella Smurf

Never before has it been easier to collect smurfs. If you like  to collect different variations of a particular smurf, it is worth looking at Umbrella smurf, #20118. The Umbrella smurf has always created talk amongst the die hard collectors especially the yellow umbrella variation one whether it is genuine or not.

Umbrella smurf was one of the last smurfs produced by Bully in 1979 and then from 1980 to 2002 and 2004 by Schleich. Wallace Berrie also sold Umbrella from 1981 to 1983 and then in 1990 under the name of Applause (formerly known as Wallace Berrie). 

There appears to be no real variance on the figurine other than the colour of the blue skin. The main variance is to be found with the white polka dot spots and the colour of the mushroom.

All Bully marked ones can be found with the white polka dot spots as part of the umbrella, best probably described as raised white polka dot spots. The mushroom was orange red shade. I have also found ones made out of Hong Kong that have the some kind of umbrellas. 

The Schleich mades have the white polka dot spots sprayed onto a red coloured mushroom. With the early releases these were a lighter red colour compared to the ones released after 1990 that have a stronger red colour. 

In 1990 Applause decided to relaunch the smurfs in the USA and in Canada with a range of different smurf merchandise. As part of the relaunch 11 smurf figurines were released (old releases, no new designs) and has the markings China, Applause. Umbrella smurf was one of the eleven smurfs released. 

I do believe the yellow umbrella variation does actually exist, but I also feel because some of these can fade these are easily passed off by sellers as genuine. One only needs to look underneath the umbrella to see what was the original colour of the umbrella. Sadly when buying smurfs online, you don’t always get this opportunity. This is when buying smurfs from an experienced seller can make all the difference.

So next time it rains, don’t forget your Umbrella smurf to protect you from the elements.

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

20046 Emperor Smurf

I have fond memeories of Emperor Smurf when I was a child. Sadly like a lot of my early smurfs they were badly looked after and are most likely still buried in a disregarded sand pit that I used to play in. My Emperor was made out of Hong Kong and was spraypainted. Wearing a long red robe, with tarnished gold shoes and hat that had a yellow crown while carrying a red sceptre with white spots on it.

More than 20 years later I received a large shock when I discovered that there were all different versions of Emperor. I think at first I thought that mine was completely a different smurf but very quickly I started to learn that smurfs were not just made out of Hong Kong and sold in BP service stations. This was exciting time for me as this was when I started to seriously start collecting smurfs. So there were lots of new discoveries.

Emperor was first made by Schleich in 1978 and was sold to 1986 then again in 1991 to 1995 and in 1999 to 2001. It was also extremely popular in the USA as Wallace Berrie sold Emperor from 1979 to 1984. One of the few smurfs made for the duration Wallace Berrie were producing smurfs out of Hong Kong.

The first Emperor was sold with a lighter red almost orange coloured robe wearing a white hat with a gold crown and carrying a sceptre without dots. The Emperor also wears a ring on his middle finger on his right hand. This was painted the same colour as the robe and the sceptre. The markings can be found underneath the robe: W.Germany Schleich emblem © Peyo. This version is a little harder to find but well worth hunting down as it is beutifully hand painted.

An interesting thing about this Emperor, when it was first sold in the UK by National Petroluem in 1979 it was called King. Then later in 1982 it was changed to Emperor upon the release of the Bully King figurine. It was also around this time that Emperor was sold with a red robe, gold shoes and gold hat with a yellow crown, while carrying a red scrptre with white spots.

For those of you who like to collect variations Emperor can be found in both white and yellow pvc material, hand painted or spraypainted. Paint colours used can also vary as it has been painted not just Hong Kong and Germany but also in Portugal and Sri Lanka. In my opinion it is truly a classic smurf and one for the ages. 

I would love to go back to that sand pit I used to play in and see what else I could find. Who knows there could be a whole entire smurf village living happily underground.

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

20107 Carnival Smurf

While Belgium celebrates 60 years of the smurfs with The Smurf Experience at Brussels Expo, back here in Melbourne on the other side of the world I thought what better way to celebrate the occasion but to write about Carnival smurf. Wearing a red mask over the eyes and painted with red, yellow and blue polka dots over his white trousers and smurf hat, Carnival smurf carries a drink in his right hand and a holds lantern propped on a long pole in his left hand. 

First made by Bully in 1979 but actually sold by Schleich from 1980 to 1989. Like a lot of smurfs made at the end of the Bully era, extremely rare colour variations were made and can be found in the 1980 Schleich catalogue. Such as the Fisherman with red-white fishing line, Scot with brown bagpipes, Baker with dark brown rectangle bread and Carnival with the red-green lantern.  It is also thought that the early version of Carnival was also made with orange pole. 

This must have been a time for great colour experiments as I have also come across a Bully advertisement from 1979 that shows Carnival smurf wearing a black mask and carrying a white glass. The pole used is also quite different to the red one they commonly used. I don’t think was ever released commercially. 

Carnival Smurf with W.Germany Bully © Peyo markings and a mustard paint dot.

So if you’re struggling to know what to look out for with Carnival smurf, you’re not alone. Typically the German made ones have a 6cm red pole with a yellow lantern. I also tend to find these have a slightly darker yellow lantern than the ones made out of Hong Kong. These Carnival smurfs can be found with either a Bully or Schleich marking.

Carnival smurf was also made out of Hong Kong and was sold in New Zealand and the United States. I am not sure if it was ever sold by BP Australia. Typically the Hong Kong ones have a 6.7cm red pole with a yellow lantern. These can be found with both Hong Kong and Hong Kong W. Berrie markings. 

Large numbers of smurfs were produced in the early 1980’s which makes finding some of these Bully marked Schleich sold smurfs easy to find still today. If you are looking for a smurf to bring fun and colour to your collection I can highly recommend Carnival smurf. What’s not to like a smurf having a good time?

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

 

 

 

 

 

Hang Glider Smurf

Like a lot of the early smurfs produced by Schleich and Bully, most come from characters out of the original comic books written by Peyo. The origins of Hang Glider figurine possibly come from Flying Smurf who is a character that only appears in the smurf comic books. Flying Smurf only ever wanted to fly. 

Hang Glider was only ever made by Schleich, from 1978 to 1992 and then again from 1996 to 2001. It was sold by Wallace Berrie in the USA from 1980 to 1984.

One of the early releases of Hang Glider (which I don’t have yet) included three painted patches on the back of the wings. These patches were painted yellow, brown and white. As this version of the Hang Glider is considered extremely rare, ensure you inspect the paint colours carefully before buying it. If you find that the paint colours used on the wings and patches don’t match or look different – beware! This is because they were painted at the same time so they match accordingly. After this all Hang Glider figurines were sold without the painted patches on their wings. 

It is considered Hang Glider is one of a few smurfs made in multiple countries during it’s 29 years. These countries include W.Germany/Germany, Portugal, Hong Kong, Brazil and China. There are very little differences with the moulds and paint colours used.  Where the differences lie are more to do with the type of paint used. For example the Portugal made ones tend to have matte paint colours, the Hong Kong ones are painted with darker shiny paint colours. If you like your paint colours, keep an eye open for two different ones made out of China. 

Hang Glider was also used for triangle pedestals during the early 1980’s. Even in Australia we had own pink triangle pedestal sold by BP Australia with the words Get Well Soon on it. 

The appeal of a flying smurf is still happening today. In the film The Lost Village  released in 2017, a flying smurf is seen in the opening scene and during the credits he is shown in a picture of him getting stuck in a chimney. I guess no one is perfect.

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B