I back on the hunt, after a taking a little break to Florida. I went back to my hometown of Delray Beach to do some renovations on my little cottage downtown. I am actually converting it back to a residential home and my mother and I will be living there.
Today was Goodwill Monday. We went to three stores in Thomasville, GA and Tallahassee, Florida. A large thunderstorm tried to ruin our day, but we were champs and took our shoes off, put a goodwill shopping bag on our heads and ran for the front door.
Here are the top picks of the day.
1960’s DAY DRESS (NO LABEL)
Estimated Resale Value $45.00
Estimated Resale Value $30.00
Background on FRANKOMA POTTERY
Distinctive Earthenware a Legacy of Oklahoma’s First Pottery
Affordable dinnerware and serving pieces, mugs, novelties, memorial figures, Route 66 items, commemoratives, souvenirs–Frankoma Pottery has served the needs of everyday life since it’s beginnings in Norman, Oklahoma in 1933.This practical earthenware, known for its terra cotta look and colorful glazing, has gradually taken its place in the realm of serious collectibles.
John Nathaniel Frank, a graduate of the Chicago Art Institute and a ceramics professor at the University of Oklahoma, established the then-called Frank Potteries in a small studio in his home in Norman. His studio was equipped with only one small kiln, a butter churn for mixing the clay, a fruit jar for grinding glazes and a few other tools. Using light cream-colored clay discovered in the Arbuckle Mountains near Ada in southern Oklahoma, he began selling his pottery on a part-time basis.
After some initial success with the pottery, he resigned his post at the university in 1936 and renamed the business Frankoma Potteries, a combination of his last name and the last three letters of Oklahoma. At the time, it was the only commercial pottery being produced in Oklahoma. Along with his wife Grace Lee, he worked full time in his Norman studio experimenting with glazes and creating vases, decorative pieces and sculptures.
In 1938 they moved the entire operation to Sapulpa, Oklahoma but continued to haul clay from Ada, which required a three-day trip. The plant, then named Frankoma Pottery, was constructed in the hills in the northwest area of Sapulpa and is still in the same location today.
The cream-colored raw “Ada” clay remained the basis of the pottery until Frank discovered that the clay in Sugar Loaf Hill near Supulpa worked well for his pieces. In the mid-fifties the company switched to the red-brick colored Sapulpa firing clay which gave the pottery a unique look of older terra cotta. Due to the color changes of the clay the final coloring and vivid glazes of his pieces also changed.
Most Frankoma glazes have names relating to nature. Native American and Western-inspired Frankoma Pottery is most recognizable in the colors of Prairie Green and Desert Gold. Other glazes include: Sky Blue, Autumn Yellow, Black, Brown Satin, Flame, Redbud, Peach Glow, Robin Egg Blue, White Sand, and Woodland Moss. Frank experimented with formulas for his glazes using rutile, a mineral containing titanium dioxide, which allows the color of the clay to partially show through the glaze.
The early wares, especially those made with Ada clay and marked with a “pacing leopard” (1936-38), are highly sought by collectors. The limited editions and all wares with a Southwestern theme are becoming increasingly popular. Also collectible are the political mugs, bicentennial plates, ceramic Christmas cards, Teenagers of the Bible plates, and the Wildlife series. Frankoma has enjoyed increased publicity from exposure on various television shows, by Martha Stewart’s personal collection, in antique and collectible malls throughout the United States and on online auctions.The pottery is still affordable and is both visually pleasing and functional.
Frank died in 1973 and the Frank family is no longer associated with the business. After two fires and a bankruptcy, the plant was purchased by a Maryland investor in the early 1990’s who ran the operation for fifteen years.
Frankoma Pottery closed and shut down its operation on December 31, 2004. Although as a collectible, Frankoma Pottery is always in demand, the plant struggled in recent years to increase sales of its new products and was unable to remain profitable.
M.B. “Det” Merryman and his wife, Crystal, bought Frankoma in June, 2005. The sale included all designs, trademarks, inventory, the manufacturing facility located on more than seven acres, and the offsite property that supplies the raw terra cotta clay. By mid-August, 2005, the plant was again producing pottery.
Besides reviving the well-known classic Frankoma Pottery patterns that were established in 1933, the plant now produces a line of Merryman’s whimsical, oversized ceramic dogs called The Merrymac Collection. This collection has regularly been featured on the television show “The Price Is Right”, and sold in gift, furniture, and specialty stores around the country. They also will soon introduce a new line of hand-crafted and hand-painted whimsical pet canisters and cookie jars.
One priority in development is a new collection of Frankoma dinnerware based on a pattern that John Frank designed over 50 years ago. It will appear on a plate that is decidedly different with a deeper well that could be used as a pasta dish or a soup bowl. The new dinnerware will feature a hand-dripped paint design that will resemble raindrops and will be called Rain.
Frankoma Pottery has issued a 2005 Christmas plate and three new Nativity pieces. As in years past, the mold for the plate will be destroyed on Dec. 23 to ensure a limited production.This is a 41-year tradition at Frankoma.
The Frankoma Gift Store reopened recently and daily plant tours have resumed.
The Merrymans have purchased a home in Sapulpa and plan to live there at least half time. The other half will be in Las Vegas where they have a permanent showroom for their ceramics. They will add the Frankoma Pottery line to that collection and show Frankoma at various trade shows across the country to further publicize the pottery and introduce it to a new generation. Crystal Merryman is the chairman of Frankoma and Det Merryman the president.
The Frankoma Family Collectors Association meets each September in Sapulpa. There are more than 1,000 association members in 44 states. The nonprofit group is an educational and social organization dedicated to the appreciation, preservation and promotion of Frankoma Pottery as a collectible.
9549 Frankoma Road
Sapulpa, OK 74066
1960’s BLEECKER STREET DRESS
Estimated Resale Value $25.00
LARGE LOT OF 15 VINTAGE TEES (1960’s to 1980’s)
Estimated Resale Value $120 (for all)
Tomorrow I will be going to my favorite shop in Moultrie, GA. All you can fit in a bag for $7.00, I can’t wait to show you what I find.