Have you ever seen those cute M.I. Hummel figurines, perhaps the Apple Tree Boy, the Little Goat Herder, or the Umbrella Boy? Well, did you know that these German-made cuties are available on dinnerplates too?
Not only are they available on dinner plates, but also the Hummel plates value in recent years is high! These vintage collectables are highly sought after, especially by older buyers from the baby boomers era, and you can make a lot of money if you have some you’d like to sell.
Read on to learn more about these beautiful plates.
The Origins of Hummel Plates
The Hummel figurines were created by a young German woman named Sister Maria Innocentia, whose birth name was Berta Hummel, a nun who had a great love for children. Her drawings of children caught the eye of Franz Goebel, owner of a porcelain company also from Germany. In 1935, he created porcelain children from her artwork, and the Hummel figurines were born.
Thirty-six years later, in 1971, the first Hummel plates were produced in collaboration with Sister Maria Innocentia Hummel and Goebel. The bas relief plates were hand-painted, made of porcelain, and featured Hummel’s whimsical creations on them. They were very popular and soon became collector’s items.
How Can You Tell a Hummel Plate is Real?
Unfortunately, because the Hummel brand was so popular, there are many fake Hummel plates on the market. Here are a few tips to help you spot a copycat and make sure you’re getting a real Hummel plate:
- Hummel Number: All Hummel plates have a Hummel number (or Hum number) on the back of the plate.
- Hummel Signature: Every plate includes M.I. Hummel’s signature across the back, usually in the center.
- Circular Text: Surrounding the Hummel signature, there is generally circular text, which either states Goebel’s name or the plate series’ name. All text is written in cobalt blue.
- Goebel Trademark: The correct Goebel tmk logo should be included, either within the circular text on the mini-plates or directly below the circular text on the full-size plates.
If you do not see these indicators, then your dinnerplate is likely not authentic. It could be a copycat, or it could also be a piece that another manufacturer licensed for use.
No matter the case, you now understand what to look for when it comes to authenticating Hummel plates.
What Determines the Value of Hummel Plates?
The value of a Hummel plate can vary depending on several factors, such as condition, age, rarity, and provenance (meaning, where it came from). Here are a few things that will affect the Hummel plates value:
Plates that are in excellent condition, with no chips, cracks, or faded paint, will usually be worth more than plates that are in poor condition. It is important to note, however, that even plates with some wear and tear can still be valuable.
Hummel plates were created from 1971 to 1995. Older Hummel plates will generally be worth more than later plates. This is because they are more likely to be rare and therefore more sought-after by collectors.
Some Hummel plates are rarer than others, and this will affect their Hummel plates value. The rarest Hummel plates are the early ones that were limited-edition plates or produced in small quantities.
An example of this is the first Hummel plate ever produced, with a plate name of Heavenly Angel. The first edition was produced in 1971 to honor the company’s 100th anniversary, and the first issue of this plate was just made for the company’s workers. Therefore, it’s the rarest variation of this plate.
The Hummel plates value can also be affected by provenance, or where the plate came from. If the plate has a documented history (such as those that come with the original box or paperwork), it will usually be worth more than a plate without this documentation.
While these four factors will greatly influence how much a Hummel plate is worth, unfortunately, there is no perfect valuation that is set in stone. Generally, they range in value from $10 to $200, but the Hummel plates’ value can vary depending on any of the factors mentioned above.
Valuable Hummel Plates
Hummel plates are popular collectibles that can be quite valuable. If you’re considering purchasing a Hummel plate, be sure to do your research to ensure that it is authentic and in good condition. Consult a price guide to get an idea of its value, and keep an eye out for rare or limited-edition plates, which can be especially valuable, as we’ve mentioned.
Some Hummel plates are more valuable than others. Here are a few examples of realistic selling prices for Hummel plates:
The Heavenly Angel plate
This is the first Annual plate, introduced in 1971, and it is one of the most valuable Hummel plates. An original Heavenly Angel plate could be worth an estimated $2,500 in excellent condition.
Happy Pastime plate
Displaying a cute girl sitting beneath a tree and gazing at a bird, this plate from 1978 can bring in anywhere from $10 to $250, depending on the plate’s condition.
The Shepherd Boy plate
This Annual plate was produced in 1990, and is quite a collectable. It displays the little shepherd boy David of the Bible and two sweet little sheep. It could go for $100 to $150 in good condition.
Feeding Time plate
This Annual plate is also quite popular. Manufactured in 1987, it shows a little girl feeding chickens with her basket of grain. In good condition, this could go for $100 to $150.
The Annual plate, the Postman, was produced in 1983. It shows a sweet little boy in an oversized postman coat, carrying a messenger bag of envelopes, as well as several envelopes in his arms. This collector’s plate could go for $70 to $100.
Ride into Christmas plate
Hummel Christmas plates can go for quite a bit. This one was produced in 1975 and could get $50.
Apple Tree Girl and Boy plates: The cute Apple Tree Girl and Apple Tree Boy plates are well-loved and widely collected. Displayed an image of a girl or boy sitting in an apple tree and looking backward, these iconic plates from the 1970s can bring in $50 each.
Little Helper plate
An adorable girl adorns this plate, produced in 1984.This 1980s plate can bring in around $10 to $50, depending on the condition of the plate.
Where to Find Hummel Plates
If you’re interested in purchasing a Hummel plate, you can find them in a number of places.
Here are a few:
Hummel plates can sometimes be found in antique stores. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the Hummel plates value at an antique store is likely to be higher than its market value, as the store will want to make a profit.
You might also find Hummel plates being auctioned off online or at live auctions. As you’ll be bidding against other collectors, sometimes this method can cause the Hummel plate to go for a high price, but it might be worth it if the plate up for auction is the exact one you want.
Hummel plates are also frequently sold on online auction sites like eBay. This is a good option if you’re looking for a specific Hummel plate, as you can search for it by name or Hummel number.
You can also find Hummel plates being sold on Etsy. They have a wide variety of antiques and vintage collectables on their site, sold by individuals in their respective online store on Etsy’s marketplace platform. This is a good option if you’re looking for a Hummel plate that is more unique or rare.
As always, be sure to do your research to ensure that the plate is authentic and in good condition before making a purchase. Consult a Hummel plates reference book in order to get a good picture of what the book values each plate at. It should give you the highest prices available.
And now that you know a bit more about Hummel plates and their value, you can start your own collection or purchase one as a gift for a Hummel enthusiast!
There you have it! Now you know all about Hummel plates, including their history, value, and where to find them for purchase. Whether you’re a collector or simply appreciate these beautiful plates, we hope this article has been helpful for you. And if you happen to be sitting on a large selection of original Hummel plates, you could be sitting on a gold mine!
Do you have a favorite Hummel plate? Let us know in the comments below!