Information About Alfretto Figurines?

I am trying to find some information on these two porcelain figurines. They are stamped Alfretto (Alfretto by Maruru?), but I can find no other information on the web. There are lots for sale on auction sites, but none give any dates of maker information. Not really concerned about the value, but would like to know more.


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March 26, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

The reason not much is available about this is because these aren't artist pieces, per se. Meaning to the best of my knowledge, there was not a guy named Alfretto who painted and sold these.

I have seen them called Alfro, Alfre or Alfretto and the Maruru or Maur or Maurui

My understanding is these were made by a British importing company that made mass produced figurines and trinket-y/tourist-y items--often sold in the British equivalent of a five and ten store or today's dollar store.

Some people attribute these to being made in the 1950s. I have not been able to validate that. My understanding is most were made in the 1970s-1980s to look old.


The company was on the coat-tails of the doll and antique market that really took off in the late 1970s and 1980s so they wanted to make things that looked old and try to "fool" people into thinking they had something valuable AND try to give poorer people who wanted the antiques but could not afford them, something to have that they could afford.

Most of them did not have names...but were referred to by their dress or outfit color and their style--like they did a lot of soldiers and elegant ladies, some owls, young girls sitting, and the like. If there was an old antique style of figurines, they "imitated it".

The reason you see so many for sale is they made millions and millions of them and now people are downsizing or dying off so they are all flooding the online sales markets.


When people can't find a lot of history about something (sellers), they immediately call it rare and try to jack up the price.

There are some people out there who collect these type of things just because it is their thing. There are a few Pinterest pages devoted to them. I was hoping to find a sample of an old gift shop trade book from that period which may give you more info, but I can't locate one. I am sure they are out there, I just couldn't lay my hands on one quickly.

If you are in the UK, see if there is a Hallmark or gift store where the owner has been around since that time period (1970s-1980s) and see if they have any history in their files.

I worked in Hallmark stores for years and loved to pour over those trade catalogs and buying books! Better than the old Sears Catalogs :)

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March 26, 20200 found this helpful

Thankyou very much for all this info! I have little knowledge about these things other than what I can find on the internet, so I am really grateful for your input.

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March 25, 20200 found this helpful

There is nothing at all about this guy, the figurines he has made or a history about his company. All I can seem to find is figurines that are selling online. I do not even find information about the date they were made or even where they were made. Normally it is not hard to find out about an artist and his works but this guy seems to not exist online and there is no history about him what so ever.


Here is a site that the person has a lot of books and does research to help people understand more about the pieces they do have. You might want to try him because the history for Alfretto is not online and maybe it is in some of his books instead. Here is the link.

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March 26, 20200 found this helpful

Thankyou - this one's a toughie!

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March 31, 20200 found this helpful

It looks like there's pieces for sale at around $10 to $20 on this auction site

IT looks like this particular porcelain figure producer produced everything from these Baroque looking pieces to clowns to animals to Hummel knockoffs.

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