1933 Brown and Bigelow Gandolfi Wine Importers Blotter Set and Checklist

‘It’s In The Details’

Title Brown and Bigelow Gandolfi Wine Importers Blotter
Year 1933
Size 3 7/16″ x 6″
Images Color
Type Trade
Number in Set
6 (?)

1933 Brown and Bigelow Gandolfi Wine Importers Blotter Overview

Gandolfi Football BlotterInk blotters were generally rectangular cards that were popular in the days of fountain pens. They would usually be kept on desks and were used to allow people to wipe off excess ink. To properly absorb the ink, blotters are generally a little thicker and have a different texture than traditional cards.

This blotter was an advertisement for a wine importer and merchant – L. Gandolfi and Company, who was advertised as being in business since 1882. They used these cards to advertise a number of specific wine brands. Each card also includes a pin-up model and while most were non-sports related or only showed minor sports (such as ice skating and bullfighting), one card shows a woman throwing a football and is titled, ‘Having her Fling.’

Brown and Bigelow also produced numerous other blotters for other companies. Many involved pin-up girls or pictures that were humorous.

While not standard trading cards, blotters with sports figures are absolutely collectible. Because they were used to absorb extra ink, you will often find them with ink spots all over them. Ones that haven’t been covered in ink demand a premium.

Blotters were generally an advertisement for a specific product, service, or organization. Along with a picture of a sports figure or team, they usually sought to promote some type of product or business.

Duplication on Postcards

Baker Oil Tools Postcard - Football (1935)Brown and Bigelow used these pictures for other products, too.

Rare postcards used at least the football image shown here and others in the set were presumably used, although I have not seen them. The postcards used the same imagery and slogans as the ink blotters. The postcards included a small calendar at the bottom for a particular month.

It is unknown if other businesses used these but the one shown here was for Baker Oil Tools, Inc., a company based in Huntington Park, California.

The postcards are rare and not easily found. To date, this is the only one I have seen. This one is dated with an calendar for October 1935 although the copyright date at the bottom indicates it is a 1934 issue, placing their production after the ink blotters.

1933 Brown and Bigelow Gandolfi Wine Importers Blotter Checklist

Several Brown and Bigelow blotters were printed for Gandolfi. Below is a checklist of ones I have seen to date.

  1. Bull Fighter (She Slays ‘Em)
  2. Football Player (Having Her Fling)
  3. Girl Upside Down (Is My Face Red?)
  4. Girl with Mexican Hat (Not on the Menu)
  5. Ice Skater (Fancy Figures)
  6. Swimmer (Whoopee)

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