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January 2019

Museum spotlight: Kao and Kanebo

This will be a short post as I don't have much information on these, but I still feel the need to highlight other cosmetics museums around the globe and online.  A couple years back Project Vanity led us on a virtual tour of the Kao Museum in Tokyo and I've been wanting to write about it ever since.  Kao, a global company based in Japan, has roots stretching back to 1887 and now distributes many lines including Bioré, Molton Brown, Jergens, and Kanebo.  Like other historic Japanese beauty companies such as Shiseido and Pola, Kao has its own museum, which is divided into three sections.  The first examines the "culture of cleanliness" from ancient through modern times, i.e. traditional practices related to personal hygiene including bathing, laundry and yes, makeup. 

Kao Museum

The second section pays homage to Kao's history and includes products and advertisements dating from the launch of the company's soap (their first product) in 1890 till today.

Kao Museum

The third section is a "communication plaza" which honestly just sounds like a glorified store.  "Peruse exhibits of the latest products that represent Kao product lines, use devices that assess the state of your skin and hair, and experience first-hand the workings of key features of Kao products."  Eh.  

Kao Museum

Most of the Kao Museum would grab my attention, but what I'd give my eye teeth to see is their display of all the Kanebo Milano compacts!  If I ever visit Japan you know I'll have to take a tour.

Kanebo Milano compacts at the Kao Museum
(images from kao.com)

Also, while I was trying to find more information and photos for the Kao Museum, I stumbled onto Kanebo's online museum of vintage compacts.  I have many questions about this which I will get to later, but according to the website, the Kanebo company started a collection of vintage compacts in 1990 and now has 1,074 items in its collection.  I was really wowed at the variety and quality of the objects, which date from the 1850s-1950s and span 22 countries of origin.  Everything is arranged chronologically so I thought I'd share some of my favorite pieces from each era.  First up is this beautiful late 19th century wristlet from Russia, which was most likely owned by a member of the Tzar's family.

Russian compact/purse, c. 1885

These two items are extremely unique:  a bracelet and matching necklace from Nepal.  These are from about 1900 and belonged to Nepalese royalty.  Apparently these pieces served as the catalyst for starting the Kanebo collection.  I believe only the bracelet stores powder.

Makeup bracelet from Nepal

Makeup necklace from Nepal

I adore this exquisite blue enamel butterfly compact from Austria.

Butterfly compact, c. 1920

A three-tiered compact like this is something I've only seen in collector's guides. 

Tiered compact, c. 1923

This red, blue and black compact is a stunning example of Art Deco design.

Art Deco compact, c. 1924

This is another great example of a famous design.  Fan-shaped compacts had a moment in the 1940s thanks to Wadsworth, and this one is by the Pink Lady company (which, as you may remember, I wasn't able to turn up much information on.)

Pink Lady fan-shaped compact

You know I have a weakness for novelty compacts, and this blue starry Kigu is one of my favorites.

Kigu flying saucer compact

Naturally I have many questions for Kanebo regarding this collection.  First, where are these compacts physically located and stored?  As far as I know they're not displayed anywhere except online.  A museum space for their parent company already exists, so it would make sense to perhaps house them somewhere in the Kao Museum.  Second, who at Kanebo decided to start a vintage compact collection and why?  The website vaguely states that the compacts' "historical background and the culture of women’s makeup are being researched together with the era, materials, and country of manufacture...While valuing the history and culture of 'beauty,' Kanebo Cosmetics Inc. will continue to research beauty and offer further proposals for the future.  Through this collection, we hope you feel a sense of 'women and beauty' and 'the pleasure of applying makeup."  So no real answers there.  Finally, who is doing the research on these items and where are they getting their information?  I'm assuming it's a Kanebo staff member or group, but I also wonder if they've used an outside consultant or researcher.  And while most of the information seems correct, some of it doesn't seem to have any evidence to back it up.  For example, they claim this Scottie dog compact depicts FDR's beloved terrier Fala.  I mean it's plausible since Fala popularized the Scottie motif, but is it actually the famous dog?  Plus Fala's birth year was 1940 so that means the Scottie craze didn't fully hit until that decade, and this compact is listed as being from the early '30s.  If the compact does indeed use Fala as a model, Kanebo has its date wrong.

vintage Scottie dog compact
(images from kanebo-compact.com)

Also, the "flying saucer" Kigu compact above is incorrectly listed as coming from the USA - Kigu is a British brand.  So I'm not sure how reliable all of the information is.  In any case, it was great to see another fabulous online collection of vintage pieces, and I admire the more "museum" feel of it versus, say, the blog format of the Makeup Museum.

Would you visit the Kao Museum?  And what do you think about the Makeup Museum blog adopting a more formal virtual museum design?

MM Mailbag: Egyptian treasure

As you know, from time to time I receive email inquiries from people with cosmetics objects they've stumbled across and would like to know more about.  I'm always flattered that people think that I know what I'm talking about and can help them, especially since most of the time I have no idea about the item in question, but sometimes I get irritated when the inquirer's sole objective is to determine how much money they can make off an object they found.  At first it seemed this way when the original owner of this very rare compact approached me, asking for more information and how much it might be worth.  As we'll see, he turned out to actually have an interest in the compact's history and wasn't after profit. 

This was an epic find indeed, easily one of the rarest and most valuable in the Museum's collection.  I now present the Ramses powder compact, which debuted in 1923.  The design shows an Egyptian woman in profile, holding a perfume bottle in one hand and a flower in the other, which she brings to her nose to enjoy its scent.  The pyramids of Giza are just barely visible in the background, while lotus flowers on each side towards the lower third of the compact bloom into an arc of leaves. 

Ramses compact, c. 1923

I'm not sure if the woman is supposed to be anyone in particular - perhaps Cleopatra - but given that the design is most likely not historically accurate, I'm not going to dwell on it too much.

Ramses compact, c. 1923

While there are other ads for the powder that show the compact, which we'll see in a second, I wasn't able to locate any originals.  I did, however, find this ad in a French publication from February 1920.

Ramses powder ad, February 1920

Ramses powder ad, February 1920

I was hoping to find some good information about the compact for the person who contacted me, and of course, the ever-thorough Collecting Vintage Compacts blog had an excellent post on the history of the Ramses perfume company so I directed the inquirer over there.  I don't wish to regurgitate all of the author's hard work on Ramses' backstory - I highly encourage you to check out the post for yourself - but I will provide the abridged version.  The Ramses brand was founded in 1919 in Paris and selected Le Blume Import Company to distribute the line in the U.S. in 1921.  By 1923 ads for the powder boxes and compacts were appearing in Vogue magazine.   As Collecting Vintage Compacts points out, the ad copy is pure nonsense:  neither the perfumes nor the powders were produced in Egypt and their formulas certainly did not date back to 1683.  How the company even arrived at that arbitrary date is beyond me.  However, with the discovery of King Tutankhamun's tomb in November 1922, the Ramses moniker turned out to be quite fortuitous given the ensuing craze for anything Egyptian - clearly the ads wanted to milk the fad for all it was worth.  The world was now swept up in the latest wave of Egyptian Revival, a style that incorporated various elements of Egyptian art and culture and encompassed design, fashion and beauty (see this compact depicting Theda Bara as Cleopatra and this ad as examples). 

Ramses ad, Vogue, June 1923

Ramses powder box

Egypt's influence on Western beauty from the Renaissance to today is a subject I'm looking to cover more thoroughly this year, either in a blog series or an exhibition (or both!) so stay tuned.  As viewed through 21st century eyes, it was clearly unabashed cultural appropriation, a white person's fantasy of "exotic", far-off lands and artifacts.  However, Egyptian inspired-beauty is such a rich topic that I can't bear not to fully explore it...especially now that I have this gorgeous piece in my hot little hands.  Anyway, Collecting Vintage Compacts notes that the Ramses powder case was made by the Bristol, CT-based Zinn Corporation, a company that produced some of the earliest and most memorable compacts in the U.S.  I find it interesting that while the powder was scented with the "Secret du Sphinx" fragrance, the compact itself shows a woman rather than the mythical creature.  Collecting Vintage Compacts speculates, as I did, that the woman could be Cleopatra, but offered the additional option of Ramses' wife Nefertari.  I agree with his conclusion that it really doesn't matter who she is - just a vague Egyptian theme was more than enough to get the point across.

Ramses ad, Vogue, August 1923

Another version of the compact sported silver edging, a beautiful contrast to the warmth of the brass.

Silver edged Ramses compact
(images from Collecting Vintage Compacts and Ruby Lane)

I also spotted some ads in newspapers.  They're not as visually striking as the Vogue ads so I'm not including them here, but they did come in handy for indicating the original retail price of the compact, which was $1.00.  The latest ads I could find were from 1925 and both the perfumes and powder were heavily discounted, which indicates Ramses was a flash in the pan. 

But why?  You would think given the era's craze for Egyptian-inspired design, combined with the slight French flavor (another huge selling point - this was a time when companies actively tried to give their lines and products authentic French or at least French-sounding names) the Ramses company would be able to get more a little more mileage out of their products.  Collecting Vintage Compacts unraveled the mystery.  As it turns out, the perfumer behind the Ramses brand, one Léon de Bertalot, had begun quite a shady scheme to sell another one of his fragrances.  In 1914, 5 years before he launched Ramses,  de Bertalot named one of his fragrances Origan.  As we know, Coty's L'Origan (launched in 1909) was wildly popular, pulling in roughly $3 million in sales in 1921 alone.  De Bertalot decided to capitalize on the company's success and began using the Coty name to sell his own Origan, essentially passing it off as a real Coty product.  Coty, rightfully so, cracked down on this very quickly.  On May 15th, 1923 a French court found de Bertalot guilty of "unfair competition", and a few days later the U.S. Treasury mandated that any inauthentic products bearing the Coty name were unable to be imported unless they specifically spelled out that they were not affiliated with Coty in any way.  Since the Ramses brand had nothing to do with Coty I don't know if the Treasury's mandate applied to Ramses as well, but I'm sure the 6-month jail sentence and fine of 100,000 Francs handed to de Bertolot essentially meant the Ramses brand was out of business.  Hence the price markdown of their products by 1925 - I'm guessing stores in the U.S. were trying to offload any leftover stock that was originally imported two years prior.  The Le Blume Import Company, in turn, was no longer allowed to distribute any perfumes from any company whatsoever.  However, it did import dusting powder tins and glass jars using the Ramses name in the late 1920s.

1929 newspaper ad for Ramses dusting powder



Green Ramses powder box
(images from Vanity Treasures and Etsy)

Getting back to the original inquiry that was the impetus for this post, here's the story of how the compact got into my hands from the person who emailed me originally (we'll call him C.)  He had found it for $10 in a thrift store (!) but given the unique design, figured it was worth more.  After looking through all my collector's guides and not turning up anything, I directed C. to Collecting Vintage Compacts and asked him to please let me know when/if he decided to put it on the market.  Obviously I also indicated my great interest in obtaining the compact, but lamented that it was most likely out of my price range.  Well, don't you know C. actually wrote back telling me that he was going to put it up for sale on Ebay, but said that while he'd like to get a good price for it (that's only fair, who wouldn't?), he believed that the Museum was the rightful place for the compact, given its rarity and my passion for lovingly researching and preserving these sorts of items.  Thus he kindly offered to sell it to me directly and negotiate on price.  In the end I think we both got a great deal - he got way more than what he had originally purchased it for and roughly the amount he would have gotten for it if he had put it up for public sale, and I got an amazing find at a fair price for which I was able to avoid an ugly bidding war. 

Ramses compact, c. 1923

After reading the Ramses history at Collecting Vintage Compacts and browsing the Museum's site, C. seemed genuinely interested in the compact and in the Museum's mission, so I was very happy to see he wasn't just in it for profit and was willing to work with me to ensure the compact went to a great home instead of merely to the highest bidder.  :)  I really appreciated it, as so many people who ask about value just want to know how much they can get for an item and have absolutely no consideration for the object's history or the Museum, which, as a reminder, is funded entirely out of my own pocket.  Not that anyone is obligated to donate rare and valuable items, of course, but they could follow C.'s example and be open to selling their item to me at a price that works for both of us.  I know if I came across an object I have no interest in but that other collectors might - say, a rare Barbie Doll - I'd seek out someone who would truly treasure it and give them first dibs.

Ramses compact, c. 1923

What do you think?  And yay or nay on a series/exhibition on Egyptian-inspired beauty?

Book review: Facing Beauty by Aileen Ribeiro

I'm embarrassed to say that Facing Beauty:  Painted Women and Cosmetic Art has been in my possession for well over a year (along with many others).  As usual, it's not due to lack of interest that I hadn't gotten around to reading and reviewing it but rather the relentless lack of time.  I was more than excited to dive into Facing Beauty, as it's written by Aileen Ribeiro, a renowned fashion/art historian (ahem!) and I always welcome an examination of makeup through an art history lens.

Aileen Ribeiro, Facing Beauty

Ribeiro's premise is the exploration of Western beauty ideals from the Renaissance through the early 20th century (roughly 1500-1940) as portrayed in painting and literature, and how cosmetics both helped create and achieve these ideals.  Facing Beauty is not intended as a fairly straightforward history of makeup nor is it strictly art history with a dash of cosmetics; rather, the book seeks to trace the evolution of what the Western world considered beautiful in particular points in time using art from those eras, and along the way, identifies makeup's role the formation and realization of beauty standards.

Chapter 1 covers the Renaissance period and appropriately begins in Italy, as the country served as the primary locus for Europe's cultural rebirth.  Ribeiro reminds us that it was a time of lively cultural debate, and the topic of what constituted beauty was fervently discussed.  Renaissance thinkers pondered beauty in all its forms, including the ideal female face and body.  By and large, the ideal Renaissance woman possessed pale, flawless skin, sparkling yet dark eyes (sometimes achieved with the essence of the deadly nightshade plant, a.k.a. belladonna), a long straight nose, and a small mouth. Tidbit:  did you know that blonde hair was preferred throughout the Renaissance?  I didn't, nor did I know of the ridiculous lengths women would go to in order to acquire it, such as using this crownless hat (known as a solana) combined with a thorough application of various dyeing potions (some made with dangerous ingredients such as alum, some with harmless ones such as lemon juice) via a small sponge (sponzetta), along with a hefty dose of sunshine.

Venetian Woman Bleaching Her Hair, c. 1598-1610

In painting and literature, women were still viewed as mostly decorative objects, existing only to be admired.  Women's attempts to adhere to the established beauty standards, including the use of makeup, were actually expected and encouraged: it was their duty to appear pleasant to look at.  "It was important for a woman to be physically beautiful (or try to be so), as a courtesy to others, and thus cosmetics were allowable as long as they were used in moderation.  These themes appear over and over again throughout the [16th] century, as the idea of dress and appearance being pleasing to others began (unevenly at times) to replace the traditional Biblical belief that such things were indicative of pride and vanity." (p. 71) But as the Renaissance spread to Northern Europe, in the early 1600s cosmetics were becoming increasingly criticized for allegedly inciting vanity among women.  Indeed, the debate over whether women should or shouldn't wear "auxiliary beauty" reached a fever pitch by the middle of the 17th century.  By the late 1600s, with flourishing trade leading to an increase in the number of beauty products available to the average woman, the pendulum had swung back towards a mostly positive view of makeup.  This in turn set the stage for the fashion excess so emblematic of the 1700s, as well as the establishment of a woman's "toilette" (formal beauty routine).

This brings us to Chapter 2, an overview of beauty ideals during the Enlightenment, which spanned approximately from 1700 through the early 1800s.  Ribeiro explores how the era's leading philosophers continued the Renaissance's debate on beauty.  Theoretically it represented a departure from Renaissance thinking in that writers and artists of the time no longer believed that a woman's face and body had to be perfectly proportional or symmetrical in order to be beautiful.  Beauty was now in the eye of (male) beholder and also took a woman's personality into consideration.  However, Enlightenment thinkers still clung to the usual standards of fair, clear skin, a high forehead, straight nose, and rosy lips and cheeks.  One of the highlights of this chapter was the author's discussion of excess in fashion and beauty, including the fabulously elaborate toilette.  I mean, look at this set from around 1755.  How opulent!  Wouldn't you love to get ready with this on your vanity?  It's currently housed in the Dallas Museum of Art, but obviously I think its rightful home is the Makeup Museum. :)

Cosmetics box, c. 1955
(image from the Dallas Museum of Art)
Cosmetics set, c. 1755

Another fun little nugget of information:  I knew a bit about how beauty patches were all the rage during this era and that their placement symbolized certain things from Sarah Jane Downing's Beauty and Cosmetics:  1550-1950, but I did not know that each area of the face corresponded to a zodiac sign - put a patch on your chin to show you were a Capricorn, or one over the left eye to signify your Aquarius sign.  I'm astonished that the notion of matching beauty products to your zodiac sign goes all the way back to the 1700s!  Of course, the heavy makeup worn by royalty and other upper-class women was not without its critics, especially artists.  Ribeiro thoughtfully points out another connection between makeup and art:  The excess caused painters to question whether they could capture a woman's true likeness and what exactly they were painting - the sitter or her makeup.  "How much face painting was there meant to be in the painting of a face?" (p. 184) It also moved the age-old question of how one could determine a woman's "real" beauty if she was wearing layers of makeup to the forefront once again.  But as we know, the passion for over-the-top fashion and makeup quickly died out as heads rolled in the late 1700s.  Thus Chapter 2 concludes with a discussion of the return to a more natural look, in keeping with the Neoclassical style that permeated every aspect of post-revolution French culture.  Makeup was still used to achieve what was thought of as ancient Greek or Roman beauty (think LM Ladurée and Madame Recamier), but the days of wearing thick layers of white paint (the ever-deadly ceruse), heavily rouged cheeks and patches were over.  Nevertheless the market for makeup and skincare products continued to grow despite the even more austere approach to makeup following the decline of the Neoclassical style during the 1820s.

Beauty ad, late 1700s

The last chapter was my favorite, as it outlines the development of modern beauty ideals from the 1830s through the early 20th century as well as how the beauty industry both shaped and was shaped by these notions - a topic I'm endlessly fascinated by due to its complexity and the fact that it serves as the foundation (haha!) of the makeup styles and looks we've come to rely on in the new millennium.  Ribeiro's take on the rapid developments during this time, which represented a sea change in beauty culture, is quite different from other modern beauty histories such as Kathy Peiss's Hope in a Jar and Madeleine Marsh's Compacts and Cosmetics.  As I noted earlier, Facing Beauty isn't meant to be a fairly straightforward history of cosmetics, and the last chapter describes some parallels between art and makeup that, in my opinion, are even more insightful than those in the previous chapters.

Earlier in the 1800s, beauty was more prominently linked to health and hygiene than in previous eras, hence the rise of historic soap companies like Pears, and remained that way till the early 1900s.  The middle of the century also witnessed the birth of the societal norm of less makeup on "proper" (i.e. upper and middle-class) women; a noticeably painted face became associated with prostitutes, or at least the lower classes.  This is more or less a twist on the long-standing association between beauty and virtue.  Ribeiro notes that improvements in sanitation and medicine had largely eradicated the need for heavy makeup anyway.  Shops were now promoting mostly skincare, light face powder and blush, eyeliner and brow powder.  The author also points out how beauty became synonymous with cosmetics, perhaps rendering traditional ideas of beauty obsolete.  In 1904 Australian artist Rupert Bunny depicted a modern-day version of the Three Graces applying powder and lip color, which, according to the author, is most likely the first time in the Western world that ideal beauty is directly associated with makeup.

Rupert Bunny, Apres le Bain, ou la Toilette, 1904

In the 1910s makeup became more visible, both on the women wearing it and its widespread commercial availability.  Ribeiro identifies another interesting connection between art and makeup during this time:  bolder, more colorful abstract art inspired vibrant makeup.  As an example the author uses the painting Maquillage by Natalia Goncharova, which "shows the bright primary colors and abrupt angular lines that [Goncharova] saw in contemporary makeup, a startling contrast to the soft and tender, 'ultra-feminine' beauty of the turn of the century.  Cosmetics as art were influenced by art - the vivid colors seen in the work of the Fauves and in the clashing and barbaric beauty of the designs for the Ballet Ruses." (p. 298). 

Natalia Goncharova, Maquillage, 1913-1914
(image from the Dallas Museum of Art)

At this point makeup was also seen as essential for a woman's professional success in addition to landing a husband.  Nevertheless, the free-spirited flapper era might be the first instance of women wearing makeup solely for themselves, as a symbol of their independence.  The 1930s, a decade in which movie stars captured the hearts of audiences across the globe, is when cosmetics became inextricably linked to glamour and the ultimate symbol of femininity.  And by the end of the second World War, makeup "was no longer associated with deceit, with disguising the real woman, and it had largely (if not completely) become free from association with immorality and sexual temptation.  Most of all, beauty was regarded as something achieved by cosmetics, by science, rather than inherited; it was a commodity, no longer elitist but democratised," Ribeiro concludes (p. 325). The epilogue summarizes the attempts made from the mid-20th century until roughly now to define beauty and where cosmetics fit into a discussion about modern-day beauty ideals.  It was well-written, but obviously I think another entire book on that time frame would make an amazing sequel.

Overall, I'd say Facing Beauty is a more in-depth version of the aforementioned book by Sarah Jane Downing, as they cover the same time periods and draw on many of the same sources.  While it was an excellent read, I remember my dismay regarding the brevity of Downing's bookFacing Beauty expands on Downing's work by offering a lengthier analysis of art and literature to help tell the story of makeup and beauty, as well more information on beauty recipes and ingredients.  The latter reminds me a bit of Susan Stewart's wonderful Painted Faces.  However, Facing Beauty does not delve much into the societal role of cosmetics, an aspect that makes Stewart's book stand out from other cosmetics history tomes.  In any case, it's a thoroughly enjoyable and well-researched read, and a must-have for anyone who wants to learn more about the intersection of art and makeup.  As compared to other books in the same vein, Facing Beauty provides the quintessential overview of Western beauty ideals as seen through an art historian's perspective and thoroughly covers how makeup corresponds to them. 

Have you read this one?  If not, are you interested in checking it out? 

Curator's Corner, December 2018 (plus a quick blog note)

CC logoHere are December's links, some of which are yearly recaps.  Enjoy!

- Allure takes a look back at the year's wackiest Instagram fads, while this article highlights how the notion of "inclusive beauty" (a.k.a. the "Fenty effect" was 2018's standout trend among beauty companies.  Plus, I'm wondering if 2018's influencer drama has anything to do with beauty consumers' waning interest in social media

- As a sort of follow-up to my MM Musings on wasteful beauty packaging, it seems more beauty bloggers are speaking out against excessive packaging.

- I'm always interested in taking a peek in other people's makeup bags.

- Another ugly side of the beauty industry is the predatory nature of cosmetology schools.  With the success of these and other for-profit schools, along with the crippling debt of student loans for basically anyone who isn't wealthy, I'm not hopeful for a solution any time soon.

- I'm loving the return of lip gloss, although in my '90s nostalgia-addled mind it was never really gone. 

- Also super excited for Pantone's 2019 Color of the Year - coral is my go-to makeup shade.

The random:

- It might seem like nothing good happened in 2018, but here's proof that it wasn't a total dumpster fire.

- I think I might have experienced Stendhal Syndrome on more than one occasion (and  I fully believe it can occur outside of Florence). Fortunately it didn't culminate in a heart attack like it did for this poor man who was recently overcome by Botticelli's The Birth of Venus.

- Did you know you can also be overwhelmed by cuteness?  I know I live with the urge to squeeze the fluff out of Museum staff 24/7.  It's very hard not to hug them too hard!

- "He was small in stature, but of the utmost symmetry of form."  Speaking of too cute, I was mesmerized by this Roman sarcophagus that holds the remains of a very fancy pug named Harlequin.  I only wish there was a painting of him so we could see his little squishy face and curly tail.

And finally, a quick blog note.  I'll be returning to my usual slow schedule of about 1 post per week.  I'm not sure if you noticed, but I ramped up the volume during December in order to cover all the holiday collections I wanted to before the actual holidays.  Doing so came at a price:  I had no energy left to do a holiday/winter exhibition.  I'm also scrapping the idea of a 10-year anniversary exhibition, since honestly I'm feeling the same way I did this time last year and also felt that a decade of not getting anywhere wasn't exactly a good reason to celebrate with an exhibition (and one that wouldn't have turned out the grandiose way I wanted it to anyway.)  Lastly, I'm going to continue blogging because I still enjoy collecting makeup and writing about it and because I have no identity without blogging - the Museum is still my "baby" and if I'm not the curator of an online museum I created then who am I? - but I will no longer be banging my head against a wall trying to get an exhibition or physical space for the Museum, nor will I be pursuing any of the book ideas I've had over the years.  In short, I have thoroughly given up on any projects outside of blogging and maintaining the Museum's collection, and possibly overhauling the website.  Having said all that, I'll still do my best to research and provide information about various items given the scant resources I have available to me, and I'll still be doing my little seasonal bedroom exhibitions and putting them online.  So that's the plan for now.

How were your holidays?  Any plans, goals or resolutions for 2019?