Compact Mirrors & Powder Compacts

Jane Vanroe on collecting vintage powder compacts and compact mirrors. You can find Jane's designs at www.vanroe.com and on Amazon in the EU & USA

Valuation: How much is my Stratton / KIGU / vintage powder compact worth?

In this, the second of my FAQ posts, I’ll take on the trickiest of questions – “Can you value my compact?” or “How much is it worth?”.

(See also my first FAQ post: Can you repair my vintage powder compact?)

First of all, I should say that I don’t now buy vintage compacts for Vanroe Compact Mirrors. I mainly source my own collection from fairs, dealers and collectors with a number of compacts to sell.

Vintage KIGU butterfly powder compact

A vintage KIGU butterfly powder compact – probably late 1960s.

Unfortunately I am not able to value individual pieces. So much depends on condition, design and current trends in the collector community. A good tip is to look at recent prices on Ebay for similar compacts – it’s where most collectors look first. You should note too that collectors often prefer their compacts in their original, untouched condition… potentially powder and all. This is rather different to my customers at Vanroe Compacts who are buying a compact to use.

Stratton ballet compact

Stratton’s new ‘Giselle’ ballerina powder compact – available at Vanroe.

Compacts that receive enormous collector interest are Stratton Ballerina Compacts (currently in vogue), novelties by any established brand like Le Rage, Vogue Vanities, Pygmalion (Diaries, Telephones, Roulette Wheels, Pianos, Globes), and KIGU’s beautiful Flying Saucer editions. Then there are the earlier compacts, pre-1940, often in precious metals. See Gillian Horsup’s site for lovely examples.

I also recommend (again!) that you get in touch with the British Compact Collectors’ Society. They are a lovely and incredibly well-informed group. Although, like me, they are unable to provide valuations, they can point you in the direction of information about your compact. Should you decide to become a BCCS member, you can discuss valuations with the experts at BCCS events. Membership is currently just £15/year.

Vintage heart powder compact

Vintage heart powder compact, unmarked. Valuation is therefore purely subjective, depending on how much you love the design and condition.

You might also like to read my post on The Use, Care and Repair of Vintage Powder Compacts.

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2 comments on “Valuation: How much is my Stratton / KIGU / vintage powder compact worth?

  1. Cecilia Martinez
    August 11, 2013

    I have this heart on front compact do you have any idea how much this is worth as I am clearing out some compacts would be grateful for any advicececilia martinea

  2. Janet Perry
    May 9, 2014

    I have a gold coloured compact used, pat no 562662 596236. 607648is it worth keeping.

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About me

Jane Johnston Vanroe Powder Compact Mirrors

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