Hummel Figures

To the collector the value of their collection is often the last thing thing they are concerned about and I have often thought that an ideal subject for a new collector would be the charming Hummel figures of children. They can be acquired at reasonable cost and they are a vast and interesting subject.

These endearing figures were developed from drawings by a Franciscan nun Berta Hummel drawn for the Goebel Company in Bavaria. Introduced in 1935 Hummel’s figures were an instant success. By the time she died in 1946 she had drawn around 600 sketches, which was enough to keep the company producing Hummel figures for decades.

Hummels from the 1950s and 1960s are the cheapest on the market. Earlier pieces, groups and larger figures are more desired and so more expensive. The more recent or common a figure is, the more vital the condition becomes in determining value.

Many of the figures are made in more than one version. For example, “Weary Wanderer” was first produced in 1949 but has been made regularly ever since. The rather rare version with blue eyes is more valuable than all the others. Also “Puppy Love” which is one of the first models to be produced and therefore rare and valuable still has a rarer and even more collectable example which faces right instead of left.

Factory marks help in dating Hummels. During the 1930s the firm used a script “Goebel” mark under a crown. After 1950 a “V” mark with a small bee was used and from 1960 the bee became further stylised as a simple dot with triangular wings.

Senior Valuer Michael Dowse

For more information or if you have similar items you’re thinking about offering items in auction or you simply would like a valuation, please get in touch with us, full details can be found on our company website

Hummel Figures

I have always thought that an ideal subject for a new collector would be the charming Hummel figures of children. These endearing figures were developed from drawings by a Franciscan nun Berta Hummel drawn for the Goebel Company in Bavaria. Introduced in 1935 Hummel’s figures were an instant success. By the time she died in 1946 she had drawn around 600 sketches, which was enough to keep the company producing Hummel figures for decades.

Hummels from the 1950s and 1960s are the cheapest on the market. Earlier pieces, groups and larger figures are more desired and so more expensive. The more recent or common a figure is,
the more vital the condition becomes in determining value.

Many of the figures are made in more than one version. For example, “Weary Wanderer” was first produced in 1949 but has been made regularly ever since. The rather rare version with blue eyes
is more valuable than all the others. Also “Puppy Love” which is one of the first models to be produced and therefore rare and valuable still has a rarer and even more collectable example which faces right instead of left.

Factory marks help in dating Hummels. During the 1930s the firm used a script “Goebel” mark under a crown. After 1950 a “V” mark with a small bee was used and from 1960 the bee became
further stylised as a simple dot with triangular wings.

Senior Valuer Michael Dowse

For more information or if you have similar items, please get in touch with us, full details can be found on our company website

Hummel Figurines

The famous Hummel figures began life in the sketch book of Berta Hummel, born in Bavaria, Germany in 1909, who would later become Sister Maria Innocenti after joining the Franciscan convent of Siessen in 1931. Hummel’s drawings, largely of children, were published on ‘art’ postcards and this is where they were first seen by Franz Goebel, owner of the Goebel porcelain factory, W. Goebel Porzellanfabrik. He knew that they would make great novelty figures and after making contact with Hummel, gained the rights to her illustrations.

In 1935 Goebel produced the first Hummel figures; Puppy Love, Little Fiddler and Bookworm. They were a huge triumph. Goebel expertly marketed his novelty range and cornered the home market as well as the US market where their success was immense; they were a ‘million seller’. During the Second World War Hummel figures were bought by American soldiers stationed in Germany and sent home to their sweethearts. The nostalgia of their journey through soldiers’ hands has always given them added appeal to collectors.

Hummel figures are still being produced today so dating a piece using the backstamp is very important. The inclusion of a crown indicates an early figure between 1935 and 1949 as after 1950 a motif with a bee and a V shape was introduced with the bee getting smaller and moving inside the V shape between 1950 and 1970. The addition of the name ‘Goebel’ began in 1964. All figures are marked with Hummel’s signature; M. I. Hummel, except those without bases or where there is insufficient room.

Senior Valuer Michael Dowse

For more information or if you have similar items, please get in touch with us, full details can be found on our company website