Folk Art & Whimsies in Bottles

Folk Art, Bottle Whimsies and Ships in Bottles have captivated imaginations and intrigued collectors since they first appeared. We find them prominently displayed on mantles, in bookcases, and on desks as a collection or an individual specimen. They are wonderful conversation pieces that never fail to raise the question, “How did they put this in a bottle?” They have proven to be a strong investment over time and the outlook for increasing values and collectability looks very bright and growing stronger.

While some art forms have been around for thousands of years, the first bottle whimsies did not appear until translucent glass bottles and containers were developed and generally available to the public. The earliest clear bottles were very rare, expensive, and prized possessions. In time and as they became more available, it is not surprising that craftsmen found these bottles to be excellent containers for their creations. They learned how to carve their folk art into small pieces that would fit through the small neck of the bottle so that they could be reassembled inside. The artists loved the challenge and were soon building nearly anything that could be imagined inside the container using homemade tools and learned techniques. Common among the items crafted were chairs and other furniture, fans, reels, niddy-noddies, winders, religious scenes, patriotic themes, scenes with people and animals, clipper ships and other nautical dioramas, to name a few. To complete the bottle and protect its contents, amazing and intricate stoppers were developed, often with cross pieces going through the wooden stopper inside the bottle making it impossible to remove. The custom stands on which the bottles rest are often works of art themselves.


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483 - Pioneer Tools in bottle

483 - Pioneer Tools in bottle

This bottle contains pioneer woodworking tools including a saw horse with a split log on the frame, ..

$75.00

486 - Beiler Whimsey Scene in a Bottle

486 - Beiler Whimsey Scene in a Bottle

This is a folk art whimsey bottle made by Amos L. Beiler.  The bottle is of a country scen..

$240.00

491 - Crucifixion with Symbols in bottle

491 - Crucifixion with Symbols in bottle

This is a crucifixion scene with multiple religious symbols built in a very small bottle.  The ..

$90.00

519 - Prairie Schooner Wagon in a Light Bulb

519 - Prairie Schooner Wagon in a Light Bulb

This is a great model of a Comstock or Prairie Schooner wagon being pulled by two horses built insid..

$350.00

526 - Miniature Chair in bottle

526 - Miniature Chair in bottle

This is a tiny wooden chair built in a small 2.875 inch bottle. The date the model was made "1960" i..

$60.00

558 - Crucifixion Scene in bottle

558 - Crucifixion Scene in bottle

This is an 1800's scene of Jesus on the cross with numerous religious symbols made by Henry A. Poole..

$190.00

584 - Bell Chair in bottle

584 - Bell Chair in bottle

This is an old Eckels embalming fluid bottle with a tiny chair inside. It was handcrafted by a maste..

$90.00

589 - Lady of the Cabin in bottle

589 - Lady of the Cabin in bottle

This is a very well made log cabin with a hand-carved woman standing at the front door.  The ca..

$140.00

610 - Whimsey Fan in bottle

610 - Whimsey Fan in bottle

This is a very well-made fan whimsey built in a very small bottle that is intricately carved and spr..

$90.00

637 - Bucksaw and Saw Horse in bottle

637 - Bucksaw and Saw Horse in bottle

This is a very well made and proportioned buck saw in a bottle with a saw horse and an ax.  The..

$75.00

640 - Cross, Ladder and Tools in bottle

640 - Cross, Ladder and Tools in bottle

This is a cross and tools built in an old liquor bottle. Inside there is a large wooden cross with t..

$290.00

686 - World War II Gift Chair in bottle

686 - World War II Gift Chair in bottle

R.W. McGrath, USN, made this chair in a bottle in August 1944 while stationed at Adak Army installat..

$80.00

697 - Hot Springs, Arkansas Chair in bottle

697 - Hot Springs, Arkansas Chair in bottle

This is a chair built in a Karol Syrup bottle. The front and back supports are square shaped and all..

$60.00

702 - Merchant Navy Memorial Bottle

702 - Merchant Navy Memorial Bottle

This cross in a bottle was built as a memorial bottle and is dedicated "In loving memory of all Stea..

$90.00

706 - Jesus on the Cross in bottle

706 - Jesus on the Cross in bottle

This is an 1800s scene of Jesus on the cross with numerous religious symbols made by Henry A. Poole ..

$250.00

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