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figures, animals and cribs... over Confalonieri


It is many years since we started taking an interest and collecting toy soldiers, animals, civilian and manger figurines, but besides getting keen on collecting as much as possible, we tried to get as much information as possible about the story of the Italian marks producing the objects we longed for. It has been a hard task to find news and documentary evidence on paper about the production and marketing of the italian marks.

During the fifties and the sixties, contrary to what happened in other countries like Great Britain or France where the toy-manufactorers edited every year, with outmost care, up-to-date catalogues, in Italy there was a scarce diffusion of catalogues, magazines or other materials for agents, relative to this kind of toys. The news we collected are the result of an exchange of information among collectioners, flea-markets and epoch toys exchange hunting, and lately, Internet searching.

Books of great interest have already been published about the famous Italian marks of toy soldiers like C.C.Confalonieri, Chialů, Salpa, Figir etc. These production are mostly in composition of various materials like plaster, kaolin, glue etc, surely nobler than plastic and PVC, but more difficult to conserve.

A special note is to be made for the glorious mark Landi-Xiloplasto which put on the market a huge and very beautiful series of toy soldiers both in composition and PVC, and would deserve a special publication for the variety and vastness of its production.

For the same reason we omitted the well known Atlantic mark, whose production has been so extended that we should have devoted a specific treatment. We condidered interesting filling a gap and extend our research about the so-called “ lesser marks”, which are perhaps less known but surely amused and made play thousand of children, at a much more reasonable price than their rich relatives! We point out with pleasure some specially original subjects, of singular charm. For instance:

Fratelli Nardi, the series of magnificent didactic albums, realized with semiflat animals in composition

Rovella Porro, the characters inspired by the Disney comics

ISAS, the mythical and very rare lattex astronauts

COMA, hard plastic Selenites, a kid’s dream, who hoped to find them into the mythical Tide boxes

We wanted to remember these, together with other marks such as Torgano, Fontanini, Dulcop, Texas-APS, POLITOYS, Canč, Tibidabo, and probably it shall be possible to discover many more. In the next months we shall publish a book with photos, documents and catalogues of these marks. Please notify the existence of any interesting material on the subject. This undertaking of ours, following after fifteen years the book “Italian toy soldiers” written with Franco Paoletti, is dedicated to the children of 40-50 years ago who still remember the battles fighted among plastic armies on the cold home floor, but we should like to involve also the Third Millennium ones, concentrated on the Playstation or PC for most of their free time… but this is perhaps only a beautiful dream.

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