2012 Convention

Greenville, South Carolina

Our convention was held at the Embassy Suites in Greenville, South Carolina and a peach of a convention it was. We began Thursday morning with the General Meeting and the introduction of our first timers.


Our President, Tom Sarkus introduced the officers and led the discussion of the various functions of the club. We discussed the budget, the convention locations, the Journal, our INCC website, the new E-News, our facebook page and membership.

Next on the agenda was a program entitled “Nothing Can Be Finer Than Nippon in South Carolina” presented by Joan Van Patten and myself. Using pictures of appropriate Nippon as examples, we discussed the various attractions that South Carolina has to 2012conv_02

Linda Lau was on next. Her program was “Very Victorian” and she was costumed to match the era. She showed us many examples of Nippon and other bric-a-brac that typified the Victorians’ love of ornate decoration. She even included old ads and pieces which they portrayed.

Thursday night’s dinner concluded with the annual Ugly Contest. This always brings a great deal of merriment along with some money for the club’s treasury. We also had an auction of some fabulous Japanese articles, which were generously donated by our members. Included were Men’s Kimono jackets, an obi, a bento box, a necklace made from shards of a piece of broken Nippon and a kimono.

On Friday morning, Tomo Takeuchi revealed the discovery of an Old Noritake design book. It contained original watercolors for porcelain artists to copy. He told us the story of how he bought the book and displayed pictures from the book that matched known Nippon pieces.

Blaine Moore was the presenter of our next program, “Nippon Toothpick Holders”. He told us that toothpick holders were first used around the 1880s. The Nippon ones have many different types of decor, although moriage is quite rare. He likes to collect toothpick holders with different Nippon backstamps.

Nippon rarities and oddities came next. Many beautiful and rare pieces were on display.

The final program of the day was the “Nippon Road Show”. It was a good thing that this was the final program because we all ended up laughing so hard that nothing could have followed it. Jeff Mattison, in costume and bedraggled wig, was the host. He belittled and teased the unfortunate volunteers who brought up pieces for his appraisal. I was laughing too hard to take notes. You had to be there!


Saturday morning brought the auction. You’ll find some of the results in a separate article. The Saturday night banquet was held outdoors, under a tent. For those of us who like hot weather, it was ideal. There were many raffle prizes and some games of ‘rock, paper, scissors’ for more prizes. Finally, there CONVENTION – 2012 By Judith Boyd INCC JOURNAL 5 was the raffle for Gloria Addison’s magnificent, handmade afghan. The winner was Joe Tunnell.

We ate lots of peaches and had a wonderful time. Hope to see you all next year.

Jim Wroda, once again, provided a magnificent auction experience for our convention. This year, for the first time, our auction was also on his web site, which brought in buyers from all over the world. We had on-line bidding from Canada, England, Germany and Japan. In addition to the many purchases made in the auction room, bidders from 6 other states made purchases online. “Those states were: California, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Texas. As you may surmise, the internet definitely added to our bottom line.

Many thanks are due to our Chairwomen — Rella Clock and Marie Letizia — and heir tireless committee. Without these volunteers, our auction would not be possible.

Here are a few examples of the items sold and the prices realized: Lavender Wedgewood Moriage Cream and Sugar – $175; Cobalt Portrait vase, Woman holding flowers – $500; Farm scene vase – $140; Floral 7 piece berry set – $225; Bolted 12 ½ inch vase with lake scene – $500; 21 piece child’s tea set – $115; 8 inch tapestry vase with peaches – $1400; Vase with Moriage flying swans – $625; Hunt scene hatpin holder – $85; Scenic coralene plaque – $1600; Beaded Humidor – $550; Christmas Deer tankard – $600; Pretzel handled floral and gold vase – $350; Bolted Urn with swans on lake – $1150; Hunt scene Whiskey Jug – $400; 6 inch cobalt and gold ewer with Mountain scene – $325; Perfume bottle with violets – $155; 15 inch mountain scene bolted urn with lid – $1200; Blown-out walnut nut bowl – $85; Swan scene tapestry vase – $700.

By Susan West

I was lucky enough to have been able to attend the INCC convention again this year. In case you couldn’t go, it was held in the Greenville, SC Embassy Suites, and of course breakfast and Happy Hour drinks were free every day. Wish I could say the same for the Nippon. I had promised myself that I would refrain from overspending, and I guess I partially succeeded since I only spent about a third of what I did last year – but if you knew how much that was, you would know that I am not exactly the most frugal collector.

We had a great program consisting of many seminars. And of course, there was all that in-room buying -lots and lots of buying … But by far the most hilarious feature hands down was the “Nippon Road Show’” hosted by our very own Jeff Mattison and complemented by some very talented participating INCC members who brought Nippon items for his -very frank -appraisal. Although he appeared to be in drag as a pony-tailed Antiques Roadshow appraiser, I think Jeff was channeling Johnny Carson that day, because despite the pony-tailed Wig and oddly shifting abdomen he seemed to have the relaxed demeanor and low key humor of the former low-key TV host. But then Jeff is always low-key and relaxed, isn’t he? I know that when he tried his hand at the very energetic Taiko Drum playing last year, he somehow managed to look relaxed through that as well. I believe that Jeff is the only person in the world who could make such an energetic form of performing look relaxing -but then he always seems to be relaxed, doesn’t he? Actually, I’m convinced he would seem relaxed during a fouralarm fire. Anyway, the road show was a big hit. I laughed so hard I almost fell over. There was a general consensus that we’d all love to see the “Nippon Road Show” make a repeat appearance at another convention.

We were again fortunate to have a raffle of some very wonderful items including the very beautiful afghan. We also had auctions of genuine Japanese Kimonos, donated to the INCC by Tomo. He also reproduced for us some pages from the fabulous original book of Nippon artist’s samples he recently acquired. I eagerly bought some. Sure beat Walmart prints, don’t they? Thank you so much, Tomo, for everything you do!

And of course, there was “The” Nippon auction, and it had so many wonderful items this year. It included online bidding for the first time and was a huge success. You know, our auctioneer Jim Wroda is very talented at eliciting bids -maybe a little bit too much. As a matter of fact, I am very suspicious that he is actually a hypnotist. He definitely made me buy a lot of stuff! I think we should look into this…

My own, Dave Frazier, had to work and couldn’t attend again this year. I did however bring with me for the second time a recent recruit to the INCC and Dixieland chapter, Mary Jane (MJ) Surina. I’m happy to report to you even though she’s a relative newbie at this, I have managed to infect her with a good case of infatuation with Nippon – so much so that she too bought a number of items. Of course, I heartily encouraged her to loosen up on her wallet! Prior to knowing me, I don’t think MJ had ever bought an antique in her life. As a matter of fact, I’ve made many converts in addition to MJ. I just show them some items in my house, take them with me to shows or auctions or yard sales, and next you know, they’re cashing in their 401-ks to buy antique porcelains. Ah, sweet success! “Rarities”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *