Hermès / Ravinet D'Enfert Lighter Holder for Feudor Disposable Lighter, France ca. 1975

Hermès is a French high fashion luxury goods manufacturer established in 1837. It specializes mainly in leather and lifestyle accessories. Only a few lighter models were branded with Hermes but they were all made by third companies. 

The lighter holder below is a rare item made in small quantity in Paris, France in the 1970s. It was made of brass and heavy silver-plated. The concept of selling such item by Hermes was a bit risky and in the end the market did not accept it. It was expensive and the disposable Feudor gas lighter insert made in Philippines did not match the high-end user expectations. It was the cheapest (4.50 French Francs) disposable lighter Feudor was offering on the market!

The lighter holder was made by Ravinet (Louis) and D'Enfert (Charles) in Paris, France. The company was founded in 1891 and was a leading company in silver and plated silver production which won several international awards during the art deco period (1920-1940). The company ceased activity in 1984. Their address used to be Hotel de Caumartin, 83 rue du Temple, Paris.

The Feudor lighter insert was called the "stick lighter" (fr. le stick), it was cylindrical in shape and could not be refilled. It was a typical throw away item. The Feudor tank was made of a semi-transparent plastic in various colors (vide infra the magazine advertisement from 1974). It was ready available in the 1970s. The top of the lighter and the bottom are made of gold-washed metal. The lighter stick is equipped with a flame adjuster.

The base of the lighter is made in shape of a nest and marked on the bottom: Hermès Paris. Made in France. Also a logo (master mark) of Ravinet D'Enfert logo is punched - RD with a clover resembling a cross. A later version of this holder has a hole punched on the center in order to make it easier to remove the lighter insert.

Scarcity: rare–very rare

Value for very good–mint condition: $120.00–150.00

Weight: ca. 160 grams (without Feudor lighter)

  • height: 6.5 cm (without lighter)
  • diameter: 4.5 cm

Phoenix Bird Match Holder, France 1870s

Match holders are another interesting discipline of collecting smoking related items. They were made in various forms and in almost every available material. Match holders made their appearance by the 1850s, ca. 20 years after the first friction match was invented in 1827 by John Walker.

Below is an example of a phoenix bird match holder for tabletop made in France in the 1870s. It is made from a non-magnetic alloy containing mainly zinc and lead. The bird perched on the side of the box has a double pin in his beak and when his head is pushed down he spears a match and retrieves it. The striking surface is located on the back of the phoenix. It is marked (modèle) "déposé" which means that the design was officially registered in France. 

A very good book for collectors on match holders was written by Jean and Franklin Hunting "Collectible Match Holders for Tabletops and Walls. With Price Guide". Well worth the money. It contains 541 photographs with descriptions as well as information on the history of matches and match holders and design patents and their time frames.


Catalog: S. Sakakura Cigarette Lighters and Cases, Japan 1930s

S. Sakakura was a Japanese company specializing in production of good quality cigarette lighters. Below the whole table lighters section from the 9th catalog from the 1930s. Enjoy!

Lighters auction results, USA 12-2017

On the 6th of December 2017 an interesting auction of lighters took place. Almost 50 lots were sold among others such rare table lighters like: German Henckles Plane, GE Transformer Zippo, Dunhill Clock and Marconis Souvenir Disc Discharger Lighter.

If you are a buyer you have to add a 25% premium to the "sold for" price.

"Entre deux feux. Bonne année!" Postcard, France 1914

This postcard shows a soldier holding a fox-hole lighter which rope is entangled around a burning woman. A disturbing view! The postcard was designed by "Edition SID Paris" and printed in France between 1914-1918 (World War I). On the reverse of the postcard it is written "Vise Paris no au verso" (ECIL 2025).

On the front of the postcard there are two expressions: "Bonne Année!" (eng. Good year!) and "Entre Deux Feux" (eng. between two lights).

eBay: Ronson Touch-Tip Lighter with Clock

Few days ago (9th April 2017) an extremely rare Ronson table lighter was sold on eBay for $1,995. It is, in my opinion, the best looking clock combination Touch-Tip lighter made by Ronson. It was manufactured in the late 1930s in two finishes: chrome plate with black or tortoise enamel and gold plate, also with black or tortoise enamel. The price is adequate to the very good condition of the sold example.

"Tout feu, tout flamme!" Postcard, France 1970

This cartoon postcard showing a girl and a boy lightning up his pocket lighter was issued in France (printed in Belgium) in 1970 by Editions Chapeau Nantes — S.P.A.D.E.M. (Paris, France). On the reverse of the postcard it is written "41 — Vacances de Jeunes" which suggests that it was intended for the youth on vacation (sic!). "Tout feu... Tout Flamme!" is a expression that might be interpreted in English as:  "To burn with enthusiasm!" or "All fired up!".

18th International Lighter Convention in Krefeld, 2017

On the 13th of May 2017 the 18th International Lighter Convention in Krefeld, Germany will take place! Table holders can set-up from 9:00 to 10:00 AM. More info can be obtained from Grahame Martin: grahame.martin@t-online.de. I hope to be there!

FAQ: Rowenta Snip, Care & Maintenance Manual, 1950s

This instruction leaflet in English and German was added to "Snip" petrol lighters made by Rowenta in the 1950s.

Ronson Lighter Catalog, USA 1954

A small 6-page color Ronson Catalog (catalogue) from 1954 distributed by the US dealership.

Evans Lighters Catalog, USA 1930

Evans pocket lighters from the 1930s have a beautiful Art Deco look. Here are four pages from a Wholesale Catalog from the 1930 featuring Evans pocket and table lighters. Stunning! 

eBay: £7,100 for a Dunhill Aquarium Table Lighter

A rare Dunhill "Aquarium" Table Lighter was sold today on eBay (UK) for £7,100. The opening bid started at £1,000 on October 15th 2016. Ten days later the table lighter had received 21 bids from 5 bidders. The lighter itself had some condition issues although the scene with the beautiful Queen Mary ship made the lighter very desirable.

The Dunhill Aquarium lighters which were made in the early 1950s are for sure among collectors' favorites. They usually receive final eBay selling prices in the $3,500 to $5,000 range. The price though might be higher especially for examples in excellent condition featuring scenes like birds, outdoor pursuits, automobiles or ships. The scenes were hand-painted by Ben Shillingford which makes every lighter unique and thus very desirable.

RMS Queen Mary is a retired ocean liner that sailed primarily on the North Atlantic Ocean from 1936 to 1967 for the Cunard Line. Queen Mary was the flagship of the Cunard Line from May 1936 until October 1946 when she was replaced in that role by Queen Elizabeth. Queen Mary sailed on her maiden voyage on 27 May 1936 and captured the Blue Riband in August of that year; she lost the title to SS Normandie in 1937 and recaptured it in 1938, holding it until 1952 when she was beaten by the new SS United States. With the outbreak of World War II, she was converted into a troopship and ferried Allied soldiers for the duration of the war. More information can be found on Wikipedia.

FAQ: Ibelo Monopol, Care & Maintenance Manual, 1950s

This instruction leaflet was added to all "Monopol" pocket lighters made by Ibelo in the 1950s.

Petit point dressing table lighter, 1955

This unusual dressing table lighter was made by 'REGENT of London' between 1955 and 1959 in London, England. The gold-tone brass lighter base is pierced and has floral petit point needlework panels (tent stitch embroidery). The structure of the lighter base is made of wood. The design of the case is marked:

Made in England (not always present)

Unfortunately the registered design cannot be obtained online although the design itself was registered between March and June of 1955 and is held physically in the National Archive in Kew, Richmond in England. One more design of this lighter is know to exist (based on a rectangle) but is rare.

The wick lighter insert is made of brass, no markings are available.

The table lighter was sold alone or in a vanity set comprising of an matching alarm clock, candlesticks, rectangular  musical trinket box, powder box with mirror lid but also a dressing table tray, hair brush, mirror and manicure set with stand and perfume bottle (not pictured).

Type: petrol (wick) lighter

Scarcity: uncommon

Value for very good–mint condition: 30–40.00 USD (approx €25.00–35.00)

Weight: 230 grams

  • height: 5.8 cm
  • width: 4.9 cm
  • length: 7.9 cm