Saturday, July 9, 2016

Complicated Vintage - The Overlapping of Some Companies

Basically this is a "not all this is that" type of post.

I've found that vintage listings these days seem to be like the old game of telephone operator.
You know the one, where someone at one end of the table says something, the person next to them repeats it to the person next to them and so on and so on.  What you end up with is never what the first statement or sentence was...that's what happens when you're constantly researching items and pulling up listings of identical or similar pieces and/or companies.  I see a little of this married with a little of that, it all depends on how much research the person does.

That begs the question, how do you know what the background really is?

In my researching, I take pieces and then Google things outside the normal actual piece that I'm researching.  I Google the company, the founder and any tidbit I can find within those results that will take me a step further.  Why do I do it?  I like to:) and it's amazing the history and stories that you find...all of which, I can guarantee, will help you at some point with another piece that could be totally unrelated to what you're researching at this time.

Recently I picked up these adorable Jam and Jelly Jars.  I love when I find the ones with attached spoons as they're harder and harder to come by these days....and you never have to worry about losing the spoon:)

Enterprise Exclusive was a sales and distribution company (commonly known as ESD) founded by Harry Pearce in Toronto, Canada.   The company began importing items from Japan in the 1950's and as Harry was a good friend of George Lefton, they imported their items together giving ESD (the obviously smaller company) a better deal on pricing from Japan.

There does seem to be some confusion as to the Lefton/ESD pieces.  Basically, one company did distribute the other's wares but not contrary to what you may see, not all ESD pieces were Lefton and not all Lefton were ESD.  My personal assumption, based on a plethora of research, is that the Enterprise Exclusive pieces, were sold exclusively by ESD.

To reiterate, not all Enterprise pieces that you find will be Lefton and vice versa.  Lefton is marked Lefton and Enterprise is marked Enterprise.  Their partnership was more for bulk ordering/money saving purposes than distribution purposes.  You may find a piece with both markings, but as of yet, I have not.

That's enough for today, but this happens with many vintage items in many as I come upon them, I will post them and hopefully sort out some of the confusion.

As always, thanks for reading!



  1. That's interesting. I've seen the ESD sticker on post-war Japanese figurines but they sure aren't as cute as these pieces!

    1. Thank you Ann! This was my first time coming across ESD but I will be on the lookout for more:)

  2. Pinned you from here, happy to be able to pick your very savvy researching brain this way. :)

    1. Thank you Margaret:) I hope it makes sense, I tried to write it out the way I think when I'm researching. Sometimes when there is nothing to be found, it's about digging out those small details that may lead you to the bigger info.