From its invention by John S. Pemberton in 1886 to today, Coca-Cola has become a staple of American and worldwide culture. As the consumerism of the mid-20th century blossomed, Coke showed itself to be a master of mass advertising, and it was this skill which helped the company dominate the American market. Indeed, even in 1886, Pemberton spent more money on ads than he made in sales, producing dozens of signs and other promotional items.
Aside from techniques that today seem quite conventional—TV and magazine ads, for example—Coca-Cola pioneered the art of brand recognition with an almost endless variety of promotional materials, from clocks to coolers to calendars. All bore the immediately recognizable logo and, in some form or another, the classic red-and-white color scheme. Many also included a Coke slogan, like “Thirst knows no season,” “Delicious and Refreshing,” and “Things Go Better with Coke.”
Collectors today can find a flood of Coke memorabilia and collectibles—part of these items’ genius in the first place was their durability and usability. To pick one example among many, Coca-Cola thermometers served a practical purpose that helped ensure a long promotional life. This set them apart from the posters and other advertisements that most store owners would routinely discard. As the decades passed and popular styles changed, so did the design of these thermometers. Some in the 1940s, for example, featured an Art Deco-inspired design.
Coke bottles, too, evolved over the decades, from a non-standardized hodgepodge of improvised glassware in the early 20th century to the now-classic curved shape known as the “Mae West” or “hobbleskirt” bottle, which was patented in November 1915 after a two-year contest to find the perfect design. Then as now, consumers instantly associate the shape with the Coca-Cola brand.
When Christmas came around, it was a safe bet that Coke would market Santa figurines, ornaments, or snow globes, all bearing the Coke logo. If Dad needed a way to bring the family’s cool, refreshing bottles of Coke on a picnic, he could buy a Coca-Cola cooler, a portable version of the larger coolers which retailers relied on to store and display Coke in the early years.
Alongside all of these items, collectors also prize oilcloth, tin, and especially porcelain Coca-Cola signs, some of which helped popularize the famous “red button” bottle cap shape. Other collectibles include tin-plate serving trays and even the vending machines themselves.
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Toys, guns, giant bears - bid on it all in Lancaster County: Not far by carPennLive.com, January 28th
Located in Denver, PA, on the edge of Adamstown, the "Antiques Capital, USA," you know Morphy's is different when you walk in the front door. The spacious lobby is filled with carefully organized glass cases. They hold what's coming ... On March 28...Read more
Got kids? Make wedding a family affairThe Columbian, January 28th
with a 4-year-old daughter. It featured things such as Coca-Cola, Skittles, Starbucks cake pops and even Heinz ketchup packets, which their daughter loves. (AP) ... Chicago-area event planner Amanda Morris created a semi-sweetheart table for a...Read more
Cayman Islands' dazzling array of automotive gloryToronto Sun, January 27th
For instance, there's his love of 1950s diner kitsch and Coca Cola memorabilia, which guests can enjoy in the museum's perfectly recreated vintage diner. There's his zest for zippy motorcycles and high-speed motorboats, many of which are also on...Read more
Here's Why Mountain Dew Will Survive The Death Of SodaHuffington Post, January 26th
U.S. soda sales have taken a dive in recent years. Mountain Dew parent company Pepsi and its rival, Coca-Cola, are hawking other products, such as sparkling water, energy drinks and snacks, to try and make up for sinking demand for their flagship sodas...Read more
Pretoria's Oupa Coke is Coca-Cola's biggest fanTimes LIVE, January 22nd
The most expensive Coca-Cola items on auction on the internet this week included a faulty 330ml can selling for more than R2-million, an old vending machine for R1-million, and a R5.7-million street artwork by New York artist Chris Riggs. Thanks to...Read more
Plymouth: Tim's Auctions to hold massive auction of collectibles, cars and ...Torrington Register Citizen, January 21st
PLYMOUTH >> A breathtaking single-owner lifetime collection of vintage automobiles, petroliana items (gas station collectibles), Coca-Cola and Harley-Davidson memorabilia and many other items in various collecting categories will come up for bid on...Read more
Coca-Cola® Honors City of Miami Beach 100th Anniversary with ...MarketWatch, January 15th
MIAMI BEACH, Fla., Jan 15, 2015 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Miami Beach is turning 100 years old on March 26, 2015. To celebrate the city's 100th birthday, Coca-Cola released a commemorative, limited-edition 8-oz. glass bottle. The specially designed...Read more
Top Shelf Selection Of Soda Fountain Dispensers and Coca-Cola Antiques Up ...Digital Journal, January 15th
DENVER, CO, January 15, 2015 /24-7PressRelease/ -- iCollector.com in partnership with Morphy Auctions, is excited to present an incredible collection up for auction on January 17th and 18th, 2015. Antique advertising signs, syrup dispensers, Coca-Cola ...Read more