Share your favorites on Show & Tell

Tolllware tray

In Kitchen > Show & Tell and Victorian Era > Show & Tell.
Liked & Loved recently162583 of 169038BOY SCOUT  STUFFFlying marvels comic cut outs
Love it
Like it

vanskyock24vanskyock24 likes this.
marcobabe13marcobabe13 loves this.
cis2youcis2you loves this.
babyboomerwil7babyboomerwil7 loves this.
See 2 more
Add to collection

Please create an account, or Log in here

If you don't have an account, create one here.

Create a Show & TellReport as inappropriate

Posted 7 years ago


(128 items)

This is a very nice tollware tray .My wife and I were driving down a side street in florida and somone through out a bunch of stuff on the stree with a sign FOR FREE.I could not believe when I saw it laying there.Why woul anyone throw it out It looks like a great piece .Idont know about it much just what it is.

Unsolved Mystery

Help us close this case. Add your knowledge below.


  1. Toyman Toyman, 7 years ago
    Does anyone no about tollware items?
  2. Toyman Toyman, 7 years ago
    Here is another nice tray nobody even said anythig about.Is it not a good tray?
  3. cis2you cis2you, 7 years ago
    what a great find. These are beautiful.
  4. Toyman Toyman, 7 years ago
    Thanks cis2you wish someone had more info?
  5. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 7 years ago
    I found some info on the internet. Also, you'll find many on Ebay. Hope this helps. I'm in FL now. I wish someone would throw one out on the street where I live!
    Vintage Tole Painted Tray
    Tole refers to decorated tin and iron wares from 1700-1900; however, most people also use the term to refer to various painted metalware from the late 19th to mid 20th Century. In traditional Tole, oil paint is the medium used for the pictures; while japan-paint was the background. The method of painting is refered to as 'one stroke painting'. The designs are composed of fruit, flowers, birds, scrolls, and leaves. Gilding, (gold), was used mainly from the 1790's-1870's, but not used much these days.

    Japan-paint is a varnish-like paint that when applied to metal and kiln dried, resembles an Oriental black laquer finish. It has a tendency to scratch easily. Most country toleware was not varnished, but items like tea trays usually were to protect the painted surfaces. (pg. 207, 'The History & Folklore of American Country Tinware, 1700-1900, by Margaret Coffin, 1968 edit.).

    Tole painting was done on lacquered paper mache items like tea trays; on furniture, and on metal, (japanned tin) trays, silent butlers, document boxes, spice sets, coal skuttles, etc.

    Early tin/tole ware items like trays had rolled over edges; soddered corners, and are lighter in weight than late 19th-20th century items that are often made of sheet metal. Newer trays will usually be made from one solid piece of metal and are heavier than the tin trays. If the tray has a straight cut edge, it likely dates from the 1950's to present.

    The colors on antique toleware items are very bright, (unless dirty); modern decorators dull the colors in an attempt to copy the old.

    To care for tole the author of the above referenced book recommends a mild cleaning with soap & water; then apply a thin coat of varnish or wax. If it needs restoration, find a skilled artist. (pg. 210).
  6. Toyman Toyman, 7 years ago
    Thank you so much for all you wrote.Im always trying to learn more.It is a great tray.Also wanted to say you never know when you might find one laying in the street.You just never know.Thanks again for reading and all your information.Thanks toyman

Want to post a comment?

Create an account or login in order to post a comment.