Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Russian folk toys

A lovely Russian folk toy postcard I received earlier this year. I really like Europa stamps but sadly it's really difficult for me to arrange swaps as the Royal Mail are so rubbish with issuing Europa stamps. I don't think they care at all - for so many years the Europa stamp has been a part of a larger set of stamps or a miniature sheet so you can't just buy the individual stamp. Last year was a bit better but then the stamp was issued so late in the year that it seemed that most people collecting these stamps had already giving up and weren't interested in swapping anymore (presumably they had run out of stamps issued by their own countries). This year it doesn't look like there isn't even going to be a Europa stamp issued by the Royal Mail, or at least it doesn't show up on this list, and there's nothing even remotely related to 'old toys' (this year's theme) in the issue programme for 2015. Mind you, apparently the subject is yet to be confirmed for an issue out on 6 October, but if it's there then it's going to be ridiculously late again. :(

...and meanwhile the Russian post have already issued theirs! It's lovely, too, as usual - I have a soft spot for Russian stamps, they are often really really pretty.

Filimonovo toys are a type of Russian pottery craft produced in Odoyevsky District of Tula Oblast, Russia. The toys derive its name from the village of its origin, Filimonovo, and are moulded by hand from the bluish-grey local clay that fires into a pure white ceramic. The artists paint the figures with aniline dyes with motifs of brightly colored strips and spots. Filimonovo toys figurines often consists of clay whistles in the forms of women, horsemen, and assorted animals such as bears, cattle, and roosters. Figurine motifs of people or other animals hold chickens or roosters is also quite common. This one here is a 'deer with nest'.

The stamp features a dymkovo toyo. Dymkovo toys, also known as the Vyatka toys or Kirov toys are moulded painted clay figures of people and animals (sometimes in the form of a pennywhistle). It is one of the old Russian folk art handicrafts, which still exists in a village of Dymkovo near Kirov (former Vyatka). Traditionally, the Dymkovo toys are made by women.

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