Woman Drinking Red Rose Tea
 
Figurine History
Red Rose began to give away Wade miniatures 42 years ago, in 1967. At first, the promotion was very restricted in terms of geographical area. Figurines were given away in Quebec, Canada as part of a short-term promotion. The results were so successful that the promotion was gradually extended until it covered all of Canada. In 1983, the promotion was finally launched "full scale" in the United States. To date, it is estimated that more than 300 million Wade figurines have been given away in packages of tea in America.

Although figurines had been offered to American collectors via mail and had been test marketed in two regions in the 1970s (Pittsburgh and Pacific North West), it was not until 1983 that they became widely available in the United States. While the molds were the same as those used for Canadian series, coloring and glazes were different.

At the end of each series, a closeout option is given to consumers to purchase a complete set of figurines from the current series while inventory supplies last. After a series has closed out, availability will be limited to trading among other collectors. Look for closeout options in specially marked boxes of Red Rose Tea at the end of each series promotion. We at Red Rose adhere to a very strict "no sale" policy during in-pack promotions. Our figurines are for promotional purposes only.

Wade Ceramics
Whisper Wade "Whimsies" into many people's ears and it will mean only one thing... small animal figurines from the George Wade Pottery of Burslem, England. Wade began in 1810 in Burslem, England, with a small workshop and a single pottery oven making mostly bottles and pottery items. He soon turned his attention to the more profitable ceramics needs of textile mills, which supported the company into the late 1920s. As well as industrial ceramics, Wade produced a line of beautiful figurines, many Art Deco. These were so popular that animal figures were added. The line ran into a snag when it was found that the Cellulose finish turned yellow and peeled off with age. In the late 1930s some models were reissued with a high-gloss underglaze finish.
The outbreak of the second World War in 1939 led to the cessation of all non-essential ceramic items.  Domestic ceramic production was limited to plain, undecorated dinnerware and teapots. 

Intended for children, they also appeal to adults who have not lost their sense of imagination. Rumor has it that these figurines were often used in English pubs for striking matches to light pipes. Also for use in kitchens, these "strikers" were used to light the match to heat the stove. That is why the base of each is graded — for striking a match against.

The Wade figurines have become collectors' items and are very much in demand. Today, Wade figurines are still offered as a premium with the purchase of select boxes of Red Rose Tea.

Many Whimsies, often those apparently in the same range, are different from each other. This is due to the length of time they were made and the volume of output. Molds became worn and were retooled for fresh use. Nearly all Red Rose Figurines, with the exception of the very first, have one significant feature: fine moulded parellel ridges on the underside of the base. It now seems to have become a "trademark" for all Wade "Whimsies" to follow, making them remarkable Red Rose collectibles.

 
 
 
 
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