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I recently treated myself to some vintage Dala horses via Mom’s birthday money (thanks Mom!), and the little darlings just arrived.
Aren’t they precious? They are in perfect condition and the two larger ones even have their original labels with maker’s marks…the largest horse has been hand labelled ‘Daddy 1967′!
The seller had listed them as Nils Olsson on ebay, but when they arrived I found that the 2 labels read actually read G.A. Olsson (Grannas Olsson) and Nils Olsson.
I have been trying to find out more about the difference in the two companies, but most of the sites are Swedish and the google translation is a bit of a muddle.
When comparing the two horses the one by Nils Olsson is more finely finished, while the Grannas Olsson is more rustic, with the carving marks left visible and unsanded under the paint:
Even with my terrible photography you can see the difference between the two in the images above.
I also received a little G.A. Olsson pamphlet with a bit of history (click on the image to enlarge):
There is tons of really interesting information on the history of the horse on the Grannas Olsson site if you are interested (both companies are still in production).