Thursday 24 March 2011

Shop Open Day Pieces

I will try and give an idea of numbers sold for as many pieces as I can but it might prove tricky.  When Clarecraft closed all the pieces were automatically ‘retired’.  If a piece retired prior to this then there is a good chance I will have the final number sold.  Unfortunately with the closure of Clarecraft so many pieces retired that the number sold figures were not released. 

Shop Open Day pieces came about as a way to say thank you to fans who managed to attend, a piece that could only be bought at Open Days.  The first of these was DW35S Dibbler with Dragon Detectors.  It was felt that this wasn’t the right Dibbler piece for general sale so it was taken along to an open day in 1994.  This became a tradition and whenever Clarecraft attended an open day there was always something that could be bought elsewhere.  DW35S was introduced in 1994 and retired in August 1998.  350 were sold at an RRP of £25.  Top price since has hit £180.

In 1998 Elton Murphy who was in charge of the Collectors Guild at the time came up with the idea of making a ‘Death’s Head’ to be given away to the first 100 guild members that attended.  These heads were whites for the purposes of PYO however most people preferred to wait in a queue and offer it up for the visiting Clarecraft painter to do it for them.  There ended up being 4 different heads.  Death (DWE8), Rincewind (DWE9) and Granny Weatherwax (DWE10)  (introduced in 1999) and Twoflower (introduced in 2001).  The heads RRP was £3.50.
When DW35S retired DW88 was brought in to replace it.  DW88 is Death as Beau Nidle and shows Deaths head (skull??!!) poking out of the sand.  This was introduced in July 1998 and was retired in December 2000.  261 of the original version were sold at an RRP of £9.99, top price since, £43.  I say original version (with Clarecraft there is always something J), the usual pieces were painted to have white hats with a blue band across it (as pictured).  However for an event in February 2002, 100 pieces were painted with a black hat.  These were a one off, not all of them sold on the day and were still available some time later.  One of these has sold recently for around £60.

  In March 2002 DWE18, Susan and the Death of Rats was produced.  This piece cost £20.  At around the time Clarecraft closed, this piece and DWE19 Dr Whiteface went through a period of being extremely popular and as a result sold for some ridiculous prices.  Both pieces reached £150.  It is more reasonable to expect anywhere between £10 and £50 though.  These figures were only retired on the closure of Clarecraft so although I know they only sold in low numbers I’m not sure of the exact figure.

As well as shop visits it was possible for fans to visit the factory to see how things were done.  PYO proved popular for these too.  DWE7 was the Shield of the Gamblers Guild.  It was introduced in February 2000 and was available until the closure of Clarecraft.  The shield cost £25 if bought painted and could only be bought direct through Clarecraft.  This was expensive for a shield due to the amount of painting involved.  It sold for £15 as a white for PYO and proved popular.  This piece again was only retired on the closure of Clarecraft so exact sales figures are not available.  I love this particular piece simply for the motto on the bottom.  I will do a piece on the Shields soon but all the shields have a motto on them.  The motto for the gamblers guild is ‘Excretus ex Fortuna’ which can be (very loosely) translated as ‘Shit out of Luck’.

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