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Tiki Central Forums Collecting Tiki Thoughts on Mug "Restoration"
Thoughts on Mug "Restoration"
LOL Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 06, 2007
Posts: 932
From: San Diegoish
Posted: 2007-09-21 2:40 pm   Permalink

Recently I've run across a few Mr. Bali Hai mugs on eBay that were in good condition except for a few spots - lips and eyes in particular - where the paint had worn off. It occurred to me that it would be a simple thing to touch these areas up with some fresh paint but I wonder how kosher this is or isn't. Any thoughts?
Ovarian Cancer Research

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Slacks Ferret
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 02, 2003
Posts: 1335
From: Calgary
Posted: 2007-09-21 4:50 pm   Permalink

I've thought about it too.

But then again, I think it seems easier than it really is. First of all, what kind of paint? Enamel? You wouldn't want to use too much paint and you'd want it to look natural on the mug.

I'm not saying "don't do it"...just saying you may want to research it a bit first, or do some test runs on less desirable mugs.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2006
Posts: 378
From: Sunny Southern Califiorina
Posted: 2007-09-21 5:31 pm   Permalink

It is great to find the old mugs in mint condition. I do like the wear and tear look on them as well. A mug was made to be used is is fine with me to show the show they were used.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 18, 2006
Posts: 177
From: Mile High City
Posted: 2007-09-21 8:25 pm   Permalink

It is difficult to almost impossible to repaint and match the cold painted on the ceramics. There are many cookie jars (Disney especially) that have the worn off cold paint and every restoration I have seen looks terrible.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 09, 2004
Posts: 3683
From: The thumb !
Posted: 2007-09-22 05:46 am   Permalink

I like painted mugs like say Hot Head by Joe Vitale. I like the paint cause first of all it gives this mug a lot of its character but its also an indicator of the mugs condition. From a collectors viewpoint, there should be mugs with a low to high price point. Even the same mug should have a ranging value level.

So when you are looking in a thrift store you can get more excited over a mug that is higher on the scale (Tiki Bob) verses a more common (PMP) mug. Plus, if it had paint, does it still have all its paint. You can feel better finding a more complete mug verses a beat up mug. Me, I happy to find anything but when I don't find what I'm looking for, it means I have to just keep looking. And Looking (and finding) is probably the best part of it.

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uncle trav
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 27, 2005
Posts: 2286
From: Kalamazoo
Posted: 2007-09-22 06:43 am   Permalink

This kind'a crosses over to every collectible. Should it be restored or left in "as found" condition? I like the "as found" type, shows the history a little bit. My wife collects vintage lunchboxes and has found many with paint touch ups that carry a high price. She passes these by because they have been restored. I have a Mr. BH that looks like he was drank hard and put away wet. He sits proudly up on the shelf. I also have many with hairline cracks proudly displayed until a replacement comes along. I guess it all comes down to choice. Post some pic's if you do paint it to show a before and after. Thanks for the post.

"Anyone who has ever seen them is thereafter haunted as if by a feverish dream" Karl Woermann

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 23, 2006
Posts: 323
From: Oahu, Hawaii
Posted: 2007-09-23 01:04 am   Permalink

If it looks too rough, paint it. If it looks "well used", or you can convince yourself that the mug has a patina, leave it alone. Do what you think is best and don't sweat it - remember, it's not an antiquity.

If you've ever found a filthy Mr. Bali Hai and let him soak in hot water for a while, you'll know that the paint comes right off. Buy some matching water-based craft enamel, and just re-paint the formerly painted areas. I don't recommend patching - you'll never get a really good match.

The hardest skill is getting the right level of carelessness into your paint application. Remember, women were sitting in Japan painting 100's of those things a day - the got very good at slapping the paint on in (mostly) the right places.

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Tiki Centralite

Joined: Apr 20, 2007
Posts: 12
From: Athens, MI
Posted: 2007-09-23 09:40 am   Permalink

I have several new mugs, many from Tiki Farm. Most recently, the commemorative Kahiki fireplace mug. I just sat and stared at that mug with awe. As a mug collector, I'm sure you can understand. New mugs are beautiful, with new pristine colors and shiny smooth glaze.
With that said, I have several mugs that are vintage. One, I just got, is the oldest style OMC Fu Manchu mug and it has crazing all over it. When I see character like that on a mug I feel that tells me something about the mug. I also just recently found a Mr. Bali Hai in the wild with no lid and some of the paint missing. I sat and stared at that mug just like I would a brand new one, or any mug a get. It has it's own character, it's own beauty. I personally can't see changing that.
New is beautiful, but vintage has character.

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