Bell-shaped Disney Salt & Pepper Shakers

I love collecting. And Disney Salt & Pepper Shakers are an easy and inexpensive way to grow your collection. These bell-shaped sets are a good example as they are readily available at charity shops and online.

I have two sets (unpacked, more in storage!) to show today:

Bell-Shaped TinkBell-Shaped Tink Back

Tinker Bell / Disneyland Castle

First we have this Disneyland set by Walt Disney Productions featuring both Tinker Bell and a very nice representation of Sleeping Beauty Castle.

This set has a six-hole pattern in the back instead of the more common two holes for salt and three holes for pepper, but each can have more, although the proportion of bigger and more holes for salt is almost always observed.

Next is another set from Disneyland:

Bell-Shaped CastlesBell-Shaped Castles Back

Castle / Carrousel

Here we have stylized representations of Sleeping Beauty Castle and King Arthur Carrousel (now called Prince Charming Regal Carrousel). They are reminiscent of Mary Blair designs.

This set has six holes for salt but only five holes for pepper.

I just couldn’t resist lining them up for a group shot:

Bell-Shaped Together

Group Shot. Say: “Ding-a-Ling-a-Ling”

In the shot above you can clearly see the similar shapes of the ‘bells’ but note the thicker gold banding on the base of the set on the left. And the diameter of the gold rings just under the handles are slightly different.

Bell-Shaped Comparison

Disneyland Logo x 2

You can also see that the handles themselves are also different, not in shape, but in thickness. This makes it easy to know if a Seller has mixed-and-matched a bell-shaped ‘set’ for resale. This does happen! Also, the stoppers can also be missing, as with the Tinker Bell / Castle set in this post.

These bell-shaped salt & pepper shakers can sell from $5.00 to $10.00 US on Internet selling sites.

For a more complete look at my Disney Salt & Pepper Shaker collection, click the link, or click Huey Dewey Louie Shakers for another set of spicy little collectibles!

Disney 75 Years Commemorative Lithographs

Lithographs are great collectibles and Disney makes good use of them to promote their animated feature films and characters in general. I recently acquired an impressive stash of lithographs including these ones from The Disney Store:

lithographs Mickey in Folder

lithographs Tink in Folder

Disney Store Exclusives

From my research I’ve concluded that this was a set of two as I have been unable to find other examples on the Net or elsewhere. Most agree that they are from 1996, which would put the start date of the Disney company at 1921. In 1921, Walt Disney was contracted by Milton Feld to animate twelve cartoons, which he called Newman’s Laugh-O-grams. So these lithographs seem to commemorate the start of Walt’s first company, Laugh-o-Gram Studios. On May 23, 1922, Laugh-O-gram Films was incorporated by Disney using the remaining assets of the defunct Iwerks-Disney Commercial Artists and local investors.

Interestingly, the first twelve cartoons Disney did were reworked Fairy Tales and did not feature either of the two characters depicted in these lithographs. Even Alice of the Alice Comedies was a few years off from the 1921 date.

lithographs coverlithographs back cover

Front and Back of folders

You’ll note that the back of the folder has perforations to allow the panel behind the celluloid picture to be removed. This is to allow light to pass through the cell causing it to be backlit, thus:

lithographs Mickey backlit

The definition of backlit: A light source placed behind an actor, object, or scene to create a highlight that separates the subject from the background, or to illuminate (something) from behind.

Here are closeups of both cells:

lithographs Mickey close uplithographs Tink close up

So just what is a lithograph?

By definition, it is the art or process of producing a picture, writing, or the like, on a flat, specially prepared stone, with some greasy or oily substance, and of taking ink impressions from this as in ordinary printing. It is also a similar process in which a substance other than stone, as aluminum or zinc, is used.

And now you know!

Apart from The Disney Store you can obtain Disney-themed lithographs at The Art of Disney store in Disney Springs. Check out our visit there by clicking the link!

Oh, Those Mischievous Disney Fairies!

We know that Tinker Bell can be a little… mischievous at times! But I think it’s safe to say that this quality is shared by her fellow fairies, no matter what job they have.

So just who put this roller skate on this tree stump at the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival of 2010 may be a hard mystery to solve:

disney-fairies-joke

I used to get in trouble when I roller skated through flower beds!

Well, whether the roller skate should be there or not, it certainly is placed in a beautiful setting! The flowers in Epcot are always breathtaking, but even more-so when the Festival is on.

Adorable Disney Characters

I can’t remember where I first saw these super-cute versions of some of Disney’s most iconic characters, but I thought they were definitely worth sharing. Enjoy!

Adorable Anna     Adorable Ariel     Adorable Donald

Adorable Figment     Adorable Mad Hatter

Adorable Snow White     Adorable Stitch     Adorable Tinker Bell

This should provide your daily intake of cuteness for the day!

Walt Disney World ‘2000’ Collector Plate

Most of the year-themed collectors merchandise tends to be a bit generic. Just a bunch of Disney characters standing around a number while smiling and waving. So if you buy a 2016 t-shirt at Walt Disney World to commemorate your visit, you will have only the remainder of the year to wear it, and then it really had nothing to offer.

The commemorative plate that I am sharing in this post fits the year-themed design standard. Let’s have a look and then we can discuss why this plate will have more staying power than that 1997 coffee mug in your cupboard:

2000 Collector Plate 003

2000 – Celebrate the Future Hand in Hand

This was a big celebration for Walt Disney World if not the whole real world. Of course we were all waiting for our computers to explode but still managed to get to the parks for some fun.

2000 Collector Plate 001     2000 Collector Plate 002

Nice packaging

The original price for this plate was $25.00 US which was probably a bit pricey back in 2000. They are common today being found on any resale sight for considerably less. I paid just $12.50 CAN for this one.

2000 Collector Plate 004

For decorative purposes only

This plate has been in its packaging since it was purchased and still has the price sticker affixed to the plate itself.

So back to the year-themed design. Because the year 2000 was a world milestone, this plate, and by extension perhaps any of the 2000 themed merchandise, has more staying power. Displaying this would make sense.

What some people thought did not make sense was this:

Spaceship Earth 2000

Spaceship Earth with Mickey Hand & 2000 Emblem

The wand and “2000” were installed in celebration of the new millennium, but the ‘2000’ was changed to “Epcot” in 2001. The Mickey hand and wand remained atop Spaceship Earth until it was removed in 2007, just in time for Epcot’s 25th anniversary.

I wasn’t there to see the ‘2000’ but did see the ‘Epcot’ emblem during my first trip to Walt Disney World with my wife in 2006. It’s interesting that the plate design does not include this feature atop Spaceship Earth.

So did you appreciate the addition of the wand and emblems atop Spaceship Earth? Or were you upset that the Imagineers were Messing With Disney Icons? Click the link to see what I had to say about this issue back in August of 2014.

Tinkerbell Shadow w/Attitude

Peter Pan isn’t the only one with a shadow. And he certainly isn’t the only one with a shadow with attitude! Take a look:

Tinker Shadow

Arms crossed = attitude!

Tinker Bell certainly had a lot of attitude, but perhaps that’s why we love her so much. I captured this image in my bedroom when the Pixie didn’t think I was looking!

Magical Blogorail: Disney Photography Tips

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Red Loop. Today we are sharing tips to get great photos on your Disney vacation.


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We all like to get our pictures taken with Disney characters! But with the long lines and the short time available for posing, it can be hard to get anything other than the standard stand-and-smile shot like the one above.

So today I’m here to help you one and all break out of the same-old same-old with tips on how to get great character photos:

T I P    o n e    T I P

Photograph Characters on Their Own

EPCOT 116 +

This is perhaps one of the hardest things to achieve due to the popularity of the characters, especially with the youngsters, who tend to rush up almost before the last guest has cleared the posing area. But with patience and good timing, a great shot can be had!

The one above was taken just before the meet-and-greet officially opened, so Aladdin and Jasmine were waiting off to the side, away from the crowds.

EPCOT 101     100++

The picture of Mary Poppins was achieved through the miracle of cropping. A little guest was rushing over to the Practically Perfect Nanny when I saw my opportunity. With just two feet remaining between this shot and the inevitable hug-filled greeting, I had room to isolate my subject in post-editing!

Donald was easier, as he was on the way down the ramp from the Aztec Temple in the Mexico Pavilion. He saw me lining up the shot and struck this pose. Thanks Donald!

T I P    t w o    T I P

Photograph Characters Interacting

Warm Hugs

Photo Credit: The Mousekatools Mom

We all know Olaf loves hugs, so this shot really plays to his strength. With everyone in on the premise, we have a great , and heartwarming, moment captured forever!

EPCOT 118     EPCOT 102 +

Most face characters will take the time to speak and interact with each guest, especially if the guest is a cute little child! Both Alice and Mary Poppins took the time to engage these little girls. One with a conversation, and the other by putting the little one to work! Can you imagine how thrilling it would be to hold Mary Poppins’ umbrella?

These kinds of shots capture a moment in time that will never be repeated by your child, and not exactly by another child. This makes each shot priceless!

T I P    t h r e e    T I P

Photograph Characters in Close-ups

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If you just have to have the obligatory stand-and-smile shot, make it more interesting by cropping out the extra stuff that does not add to the finished product. Legs, for example, aren’t that interesting and so can be amputated in post-editing.

Another tip for making this kind of shot better is to, if possible, choose a neutral background. Nothing can wreck a great shot like an unintentional photo bomb from some other park guest who is unaware they are in the frame. Hence the weird facial expressions or nose-picking moments that are all too common among the background extras when taking a character shot!

T I P    f o u r    T I P

Photograph Characters Being Funny

Alice in Funland

Photo Credit: Home is Where the Mouse Is

Welcome to Alice in Funland as she introduces this guest to a new way of getting an autograph! As you can imagine, this was fun for the subject, and is much more interesting for those who will look at the picture later.

Fooling Around

Photo Credit: My Pixie Dust Diary

This is a nice shot because it shows a bit of the personality behind the character. Chip is being silly as he helps his littlest poser obtain the same height as her brother. Mischievous. And priceless!

T I P    f i v e    T I P

Photograph You Being Funny with Characters

Oh no you didn't

Photo Credit: Love Our Crazy Life

Doing something funny with a character is a great way to get a unique shot. Of course, if you want to try the pose above, you might want to bring your own apple. I’m just saying.

Don’t be afraid to really ham it up! Most costumed and face characters love it when they get a ‘live one’ to break up the shift.

T I P     b o n u s     T I P

Utilize PhotoPass Add-ons

If you’re OK with spending some extra money to get the professional shots from the PhotoPass Photographers, be sure to check out all of the great add-ons and fun extras available to you.

For example, you can add borders:

Borders

You can add Disney characters, and pretend they are posing with you, or photo bombing you:

Characters

And don’t forget the ride photos. Because a ride is a character too!

Ride Photo

And last but not least, be sure to ask your PhotoPass Photographer if they can add any special elements to your picture in post-production. Like this:

Tinker bell add on

Photo Credit: My Pixie Dust Diary

I hope these tips have given you some ideas for your next photographic adventure at Disney!

For more Disney photography tips, check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Red | Disney Photography Tips Loop:

Magical Blogorail: Flower and Garden Festival

A Look Beyond the Flowers and Seminars

FGF Beauty and the Beast Topiary

And beyond the awesome topiaries too!

Welcome to the next stop on Magical Blogorail Red. Today we are discussing the Flower and Garden Festival held each year in Epcot at Walt Disney World.

My wife and I have only attended this event once, back in 2010. Karen had always wanted to see the flower displays and topiaries but I was unsure if the extra trip was necessary, being as Epcot always had such beautiful floral displays anyway.

I was pleasantly surprised at how much more beautiful the park was, and had to agree that it was indeed worth visiting during the festival. But I’m not here to highlight the flowers, topiaries, seminars, or exclusive merchandise. I always like to see what’s off the beaten path! And when we wandered off that path, here is what we found:

EPCOT 56

Butterfly Tent

Each year, just beside and slightly behind the Canada Pavilion, Disney sets up a butterfly tent where you can enjoy interacting with many different species, including the Floral Gigantes pictured above!

EPCOT 66

Disney also likes to use these special events, such as the FGF, to promote the latest movie or franchise offering. This particular year, the festival featured the new Fairy series based on Tinker Bell’s early life and adventures:

EPCOT 70 +

Welcome to the Pixie Hollow Fairy Garden

This garden area featured many little fairy houses and sitting and play areas. There had been a contest to design a fairy house, and the winner had her entry featured for all to see at the festival. There was also a small area to promote The Princess and the Frog movie, but it wasn’t very impressive:

EPCOT 101 +

Simple flat cut-outs of some of the characters

The theme of the 2010 Flower and Garden Festival was Celebrate the Great Outdoors, and I thought I’d finish my post with an aerial view, taken from the Monorail, of the topiaries just inside the main entrance. These change every year to reflect that year’s theme:

EPCOT 165

So if you’re intending to visit the 2015 Flower and Garden Festival, be sure to veer off the beaten path and see what else you can discover!

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is DISTherapy.

Here is the map of our Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop – Disney Mamas – What’s New at the 2015 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

2nd Stop – Home is Where the Mouse Is –  How to Make the Most of Your Day at the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

3rd Stop – Rolling with the Magic – Topiary Displays at the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival

4th Stop – Disney Nouns (you are here)

Final Stop – DISTherapy – Best Eats & Drinks

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Hollywood Walk of Fame: Stars

When we visited Disneyland early last year, we just had to make a side trip to Hollywood. But we still managed to fit in some Disney as we walked the streets of this historic film mecca.

Hollywood 6

And on those streets (at least one of them) we found these:

Hollywood 16

Award of Excellence

Special Achievement for

50 Years of Magical Entertainment

July 14, 2005

It was extra special to find this star as we were enjoying, not only our first visit to California, but also our first visit to Walt’s first theme park, Disneyland.

Hollywood 12  Hollywood 13

Two people who did so much for Disney film!

As I was taking these pictures of my favorite stars/stars, some of the locals walked by and laughed at me. I guess they see these every day and so they have become meaningless to them. Or maybe I looked like the typical tourist. Either way, I didn’t care! It gave me joy to remember the contributions of many people, Disney Nouns all, who created some of my favorite cinematic moments.

And this twinkling star caught my eye too:

Hollywood 9

Tinker Bell helps to celebrate 50 Years of the Hollywood Walk of Fame

1960 – 2010

So if you ever get a chance to visit Hollywood, and you walk the famous streets, don’t forget to look down. You just never know who you’ll meet!

Press-like Release: Tinker Bell’s Villas and Spa

June 25, 2014: Walt Disney World Announcement

Tinker Bell’s Villas and Spa

Coming in 2017

Disney has kind of announced that plans have been made and test villas created for the newest Resort at Walt Disney World in Florida. Featuring just seven luxury models, Tinker Bell’s Villas and Spa will immerse guests in the smaller-than-life world of Tinker Bell herself. Each Villa is built to be a unique expression of imagination and creativity.

EPCOT 78 +

Entrance Pathway to Tinker Bell’s Villas and Spa

EPCOT 77     EPCOT 81 +EPCOT 74 +Each Villa is lavishly landscaped

EPCOT 82 +     EPCOT 83 +EPCOT 84 +     EPCOT 89 +Which is your favorite?

Disney hasn’t released full details yet but each Villa seems to be designed for a small family or no more than four. Some Villas are suspended from the ground so access is another problem Disney is currently working out before the 2017 opening.

Disney has released a concept picture of the outdoor Spa:

EPCOT 102 +

One can see the natural theme throughout the design of this new Resort

Reservations can be made in an alternate universe starting in mid-2016. Simply use the promotional code YEAHRIGHT for a 20% discount on your booking.

As you’ve probably guessed, this is an exclusive announcement released only on Cool Nouns. We’re so proud.