Tuesday, July 3, 2018

My Variation Addiction: Dapple Grey Proud Arabians Mares

It's no secret that I'm obsessed with the Breyer Proud Arabian Mare, and I actively conga the mold. I am incredibly fortunate to have been in the right place at the right time to acquire some of the very rarest examples of this mold, and I now have all of them except one.* But rather than let that stop me, I also enjoy collecting variations. Many, many, many variations. I may have a problem.

My weakness is the #215 dapple grey. She debuted in 1972 and remained in production through 1988, and because each one was hand-splattered and hand-painted, variations abound. A few of them are even pretty rare!

Some of them are glossy...


But most are matte...


 Some are basecoat chalky...


A very few are chalky plastic....


Some have tiny dapples...


And this one has bizarre, huge dapples!


Some have pretty, haloed dapples...



 Some are very pale in color...


And some have dark shading, sometimes in odd places...



The ones made in the last few years of production are a lovely soft shade of grey. I bought this mare new at my local tack shop in 1987.


Not only do the shade of grey and the dappling style and placement vary, but the number of socks can vary, too. Four socks is the most common variation, but two socks is pretty typical as well. Many models also have substantial over-spray on their socks.

The rarest dapple grey PAMs (other than the chalkies) have black points. They are pictured only in the 1983 and 1984 catalogs, but in reality were made for less than a year, and they are therefore eagerly sought out by collectors. Some PAMs with charcoal grey points have been found, and they probably just pre-date the true black point mares.


Rarest of all is the black point variation with four white socks. These mares are quite scarce and very rarely seen. A few mares with black points and two socks are also known.

Dapple grey PAMs were issued in a variety of boxes. The white boxes from the 1970s and the brown boxes from the early 1980s are most commonly seen.



One of the most desirable boxes is the halter and carry case set made from 1972-1973. Breyer consultant and hobby godmother Marney Walerius once told me that she braided thousands of the halters included in these sets for Breyer.


Dapple grey PAMs were probably sold in the vacuum-sealed "blister wrap" shadow boxes issued briefly in the late 1970s, but so far I have only seen mahogany examples in those boxes. A dapple grey will undoubtedly come to light someday.

I have a few more dapple grey PAMs not pictured here, but unless something really wacky comes along, I'm reasonably content with my obsessive conga. It's always fun to look though. You never know what sort of oddity might be in the next antique shop or eBay listing!



* I'm only missing the SR VRE PAM "Celebrity." Anyone looking to sell? :D

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