Friday, June 17, 2016

Singles: Breakables - Porcelain Stablemates

Breyer started their experiments with non-plastic models in the early 1990s with several "cold-cast porcelain" models. They used existing molds and a mixture of resin and porcelain dust to create these heavy and somewhat brittle models. In 1992 the first true porcelain model was released.

It wasn't until 2002 that the first Stablemate scale porcelain models became available. Most of these were special sculptures for the Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron movie line, but a few G2 models were used as well.

300 of each of these models were available in the Breyer Store at the 2002 BreyerFest. #711502 Porcelain Stablemate Warmblood is a G2 Warmblood in lightly dappled grey with four socks and black points. #711512 Porcelain Stablemate Saddlebred is a G2 American Saddlebred in sandy bay or buckskin tobiano with hind socks, white forelegs, large blaze, and red on black ribbons. The end of her mane has been hand-painted and extended and looks a little odd.

While 300 models were produced, the actual numbers are likely quite a bit lower as many of the models were found broken in their packaging.

The next year, in 2003, another porcelain model could be found in the Breyer Store at BreyerFest, this time it was #711403 Porcelain Seabiscuit on the G2 Thoroughbred mold.

Apparently Breyer learned from the breakages the previous year and added a base to strengthen the brittle legs; the off-hind leg of the mold was altered slightly to make better contact with the base. The survival rate was much higher this time and the current count is probably fairly near the original 750.

Speaking of bases, the G2 Frolicking Foal and G2 Cantering Foal had a huge one. The Holiday Special Run #700503 Winter Frolic Snow Globe (2003) had one of each of these foal molds frolicking around the base of a winter-themed snow globe.

They were the same colours as the foals in the 2000 Mare and Foal sets - chestnut blanket appaloosa G2 Frolicking Foal and baby bay G2 Cantering foal - sculpted scarves were added to the molds.

The first, and so far only, regular run porcelain Stablemates hit the shelves in 2004. Called the "International Miniatures Collection" it consisted of four models:
  • Portuguese Lusitano (#8138), flaxen chestnut G2 Andalusian
  • English Shire (#8137), dapple grey G2 Clydesdale
  • Shetland Pony (#8139), black dun G2 Shetland Pony
  • American Quarter Horse Foal (#8140), buckskin G2 Scratching Foal
The collection was available from 2004 through 2005. A second collection was planned and even appeared in promotional materials, but was scrapped at the last minute. A few test models from this second collection made it into the hands of collectors.

Two new porcelain G2 Stablemates appeared in the Breyer Store at the 2004 BreyerFest, a G2 Paso Fino and a G2 Rearing Arabian.

#710404 Flamenca is called a liver chestnut on her certificate of authenticity, but she looks more like a sooty silver bay with dapples, silvery flaxen mane and tail, and near-fore and off-hind pasterns. Only 550 of these models were made.

700 of these attractive #710504 Hidalgo Porcelain models were made. This is the second appearance of this model as Hidalgo, the other can be found in plastic in the #10303 Hidalgo Stablemates Arabian Adventure Play Set.

Many thanks to Deb Walsmith, PolarVrtX, and Sharon Walbridge for providing pictures for this post!

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