To the average American household, Vintage Tupperware is no stranger, especially in culinary areas. Over the years, these airtight containers have become deeply solidified in the history, society, and survival of the American people and the world.
Named as one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century, Tupperware ranges between $50-$75 for common sets. Pieces and sets in rare colors can go as high as $100, especially if they’re in excellent condition.
We’re taking you through the world of vintage Tupperware, unraveling the mystery behind identifying them, helping you understand and discover their true worth.
Brief History of Tupperware
Earl Tupper created the phenomenon that is Tupperware- these plastic containers came with airtight seals on their lids that helped preserve food for a longer time and keep items around the house without the fear of losing them.
The advancement in technology which included storing perishable foods inside a refrigerator, also increased the demand for Tupperware as they fit into the situation.
However, the move was met with initial reluctance from the public as they initially failed on various attempts to break into the market and would sit on store shelves for months unending.
Brownie Wise, the vice president of sales, took it upon himself to commence Tupperware parties where he gave customers and attendants the benefits of using Tupperware in their homes. Tupperware parties rose to become common parties by women of the early 20th century and are one of the major turning points in American history.
Under Brownie’s auspices, Tupperware grew in leaps and bounds among American women and served as an avenue to earn income, double revenue, grow their careers, and rebuild their confidence through direct marketing.
The move paid off, and Tupperware became a popular house commodity by the middle of the 20th century- Dip ‘N Serve Trays filled the market, and soon, the company began targeting mobile solutions for food carriers.
Tupperware replaced glass kitchenware used by homemakers and became a household name. Tupperware is still operating with its headquarters in Orlando, Florida, and has continued to provide functional, durable, and safe plastic for children’s entertainment, recreational purposes, and home use.
Check out this video for the journey of Tupperware over the years.
11 Valuable Vintage Tupperware Toys
The Tupperware company didn’t limit its reach to just containers; they also explored colorful toys made in various shapes and sizes for different age brackets. However, these toys were popular amongst kids and teens.
This line of toys was called the ‘Tuppertoys.’ They were famous for being safe and very durable- any kid who grew up in the 1970s will automatically be filled with nostalgia at the sight of this section.
Here’re notable tuppertoys, some of which are still available today.
The Tuppercanoe was coined from the ninth United States president William Harry’s nickname, Tippecanoe. Made in the shape of a canoe with two passengers on board, the toy gives kids a firsthand experience of navigating their sea vessels. This 1985 model is available on etsy for $50.
2. Noah’s Ark
Wondering how Noah fit all the animals on the boat? Well, the Tupperware company has offered you the golden opportunity to construct your ark and place the animals inside them- the bonus is that the animals in Tupper toys are very skinny, colorful, and easily movable. A piece is available for $54.99 on Amazon.
Popularly called pickup trucks back in the day, Tupperware made their version of these huge vehicles, which people used to carry everything from wood to garbage and groceries and even move furniture to a new house. A 1980 model is available on etsy for $45.00
The Amphibio toy is a floating boat train made in 1974 with peg people- peg people were easily fitted into the boat compartments and wouldn’t be removed with use. They came in bright colors of red with the peg people in blue and green. This model is currently on Etsy for $33.92
The history of Tupperware is not complete without referring to the good old sphere ball, which helped illustrate the literal meaning of a square peg in a round hole.
Over time, the sphere has become a major symbol for the Tupperware company and is still available on its website today. The Tupperware company made the phenomenal toy in 1968 and is on sale for $CAD 40.
6. Dog, Elephant, and Giraffe
The plastic figure closely resembles Clifford the Big Red Dog, which can be dismantled into five segments that can be swapped and snapped to his counterparts, the elephant and the giraffe. It’s on sale for $17.50.
7. Mini-Mix-It and Mini-Serve-It
The Mini-Mix-It and Mini-Serve-It are small Tupperware sets made especially for children and identical in looks and quality. These plates were received with high interest and patronage among kids and adults back in the day.
8. Tote-em Pails Toy
The tote-em pails toys are made for children who have a flair for building mighty towers and nests and generally enjoy stacking things up. The indoor and outdoor toy contains six colorful rainbow-colored pails, with the largest pail coming with a handle.
The company drew catchy animal faces on two sides of the colorful little pails, and all you need to do is turn them upside down to stack them and make a totem pole.
The raised geometric figures on the bottom of each pail make them perfect for forming clay cookies and designs; three pails in the collection have holes beneath them for spreading water on imaginary gardens and are suitable for ages 2-10.
9. What’s Inside Puzzles
A perfect back-to-school and holiday game will help the kids have fun and grow academically. The puzzles are durable, non-toxic, and washable, which allows for multiple uses, which means they can be passed down from hand to hand.
There are two sets of puzzles- one contains the numbers one to ten on their respective interlocking puzzle tiles, while the other features color identifications and names- yellow, blue, orange, green, purple, and red.
Under each puzzle piece lies a surprise in words and pictures. The Numbers puzzle had a brightly colored nursery rhyme- the popular ‘one, two buckle my shoe.’
The puzzles help little kids develop sound manual dexterity and sharp eye/hand coordination through learning size and shape recognition and word association by fitting the puzzle tiles together, which are suitable for 18 months and above.
10. Li’l Tuppers School Yard Toys
This collection makes a great birthday gift and is filled with numerous activities to keep the kids occupied and very interested. It features a cluster of merry-go-rounds, basketball, swings, covered slides, teeter-totter, and basketball hoops.
For the merry-go-round, the makers carved a room for five riders so that the two li’lTuppers characters that come with the game set can bring their friends from the school bus toy or li’l Tuppers city hall set produced by Tupperware and sold separately.
This set is a linking, learning, and very fun toy made in shades of six rainbow-colored links in different shapes- rectangle, triangle, hexagon, diamond, circle, and square- all linked together to form a long chain.
Pulling and combining shapes helps the kid learn colors and shapes and develop retentive memory through recognizing previous combinations. They can make different items like chains, sculptures, and bracelets from the combined links.
Valuable Vintage Tupperware Containers
Your vintage Tupperware containers on your kitchen shelf or mom’s pantry for years can be worth a few hundred bucks should you decide to sell them. Let’s look at some popular and valuable ones.
1. Wonderlier Bowls
Made in 1946 by the Tupperware company, these bowls were fun and affordable and provided two helpful abilities- the burping seal lid and their stackable features, which means that you can carefully place them on top of each other to save space and time spent in looking for them.
2. Servalier Astro Bowls
They were produced in 1972 in four unique pastel colors and had a tight seal at the top which prevented spillage, locked in heat, and made them easy to move from one spot to another. These bowls can sell for about $20 in today’s market.
3. Flat Out Containers
When you hold this bowl, it reminds you of the good old accordion and its ability to press up and down depending on the quantity of the food inside the container- the fun fact is that the company still produces this style of container, and they come in a set of four pieces.
4. Relish Candy and Salad Dressing Bottles
These white gems rocked the 1970s and served tables at home and in reputable restaurants. The bottles came with a push-button seal on their tops, making them easy for people to carry around. The good thing about these salad dressing bottles is that they’re cheap, durable, and spill-proof.
5. Cake Taker
They were the baker’s delight of the 1970s and helped solve the problem of moving cake from one spot to another without fear of spilling the frosting or making a mess during transportation.
Tupperware made the cake takers in the form of deep cups with long bodies with an accompanying tray, which means you don’t have to hold the cup with your bare hand- hygienic, timely, and very innovative.
6. Bell Tumblers
While they bear a striking resemblance to the DuPont cups made during the second world war, the bell tumbler stands tall as one of the oldest Tupperware lines and has an instantly nostalgic effect on anyone who sees them.
The Rarest Vintage Tupperware You’ll Find
Rare vintage Tupperware can be hard to find in today’s market and they’re also highly sought after by collectors and Tupperware lovers. we’ll show you a few of them right below.
Clear Bowl with Pastel Lid
This Tupperware clear bowl with pastel lids sold for $12.99 on eBay. Although you’ll find this style from other brands in today’s market, the ones from Tupperware are quite hard to come by.
Measuring Pitcher with Blue Lettering
Another example of rare Tupperware is this discontinued measuring pitcher from the 1970s with blue lettering which sold for $40.
Nesting Canisters with Servalier Lids
A set of nesting canisters with Servalier lids in rare apple green shade from 1970. This unique set sold for $67.50 on eBay.
Vintage Servalier Almond Bowls
Vintage Servalier bowls came in an array of colors but not a lot in this milky almond shade which has made it a top pick among Tupperware collectors. It sold on eBay for $19.99.
Millionaire Line Pitcher
This pitcher is from the very first line launched by Tupperware in 1954 (popularly called the millionaire line). It’s rare and also very collectible.
Vintage Tupperware Containers from the 80’s
Here is a collection of notable vintage Tupperware containers that took the 80’s by storm
Freeze ‘n’ Save Container
A vintage Tupperware from 1980 called the Freeze ‘n’ Save container which can hold up to a gallon of ice.
Serve It All Set
The Serve-it-all set by Tupperware produced in 1984. It is excellent for holding veggies, fruits and floral arrangements.
Stow ‘n’ Go Container
A red Stow ‘N’ Go container made in the 1980 perfect for storing jewelry and other simple home tools.
Seal ‘n’ Serve Cereal Tupperware
A set of Seal ‘N’ Serve cereal Tupperware bowls made in 1980. They come in different shades of sweet pastel colors.
Tupperware Square Modular Mates
Tupperware square modular mates with blue lid perfect for storing dry foods- the clear body gives a perfect view of the content.
How to Identify Vintage Tupperware
Over the years, identifying vintage Tupperware has been made easy through the different methods taken by individuals. Like vintage pieces, you can spot original vintage Tupperware by checking the underside for a ‘Tupperware’ stamp.
These stamps usually have a two-part number on the bottom. We’ll check the other identification methods below.
Ask a Representative
After you’ve checked the base of your Tupperware, take the two-part number or the mold number in any case and find a Tupperware representative who can help you check it and confirm if you have an original piece.
Finding a representative is quite easy; contact the Tupperware website and click on the ‘Find a Rep’ option, which will connect you to an available representative who will answer questions on vintage Tupperware or help you sign up to host your own Tupperware party.
Consult an Appraiser
Get an appraiser to check out your vintage Tupperware, confirm the date status (whether vintage or antique), and check if it’s authentic or a knockoff. So many reproductions of Tupperware have flooded the market today, and you need to take extra precautions to be on the safe side.
Spot The Mold Number
The mold numbers on vintage Tupperware are usually tiny, but the owner can easily view this with a closer look or with the help of a magnifying glass. Confused about what a mold number is? The mold number is a two-part number stamped on Tupperware and is usually before the dash.
Submit the number in an online form or give a current Tupperware agent to help you confirm if what you have is legitimate.
Look Through a Catalog
There’re a few catalogs with shapes and colors available at the time of manufacture of different Tupperware. The released lines include Wonderlier bowls, Bell tumbler, Carousel Caddy, Servalier, Astro bowls, Condiment caddy, Flat-out Line, and Millionaire collections.
Compare your found vintage Tupperware to these existing lines, and you’ll find just the answer you seek.
Check The Colors
The colors of vintage Tupperware are mostly pastel hues like the Wonderlier line at the start of the company and later graduated to earth tones as the company progressed from the late 1960s to the late 1970s.
By Their Shapes
The company made the earliest Tupperware in round shapes (all lines inclusive), but as the company spread its tentacles into the American household and with the ever-changing times and tides of the economy, the company experimented with square shapes like in the Server line.
The striking differences and shape evolution have helped greatly in dating vintage Tupperware among collectors and buyers.
By Their Brand Name
When you check the base of your vintage Tupperware, you must see the ‘Tupperware’ brand name boldly written. The presence of a brand name will help you procure genuine pieces only and not fall prey to cheap inferior pieces.
Check out this video
How to Determine the Value of Vintage Tupperware
The following points will help you determine the value of your vintage Tupperware, from finding their age to contacting an expert and reading catalogs; these are our golden tips for you.
Find The Age
You can date your vintage Tupperware by checking the shapes and colors used at different times during production. For further information on their age, contact a certified representative.
Consult Online Value Guides
Check out already published value guides on vintage Tupperware to help get an idea of the likely price for your Tupperware collection. This will prepare you for the market ahead, compare prices, and not sell yourself short.
Appraise Your Tupperware
Have a qualified appraiser check out your vintage Tupperware and give you an estimate- they can even be nice enough to buy on the spot and save you the stress of looking for an interested buyer.
What is Vintage Tupperware Worth
The first set of Tupperware sold in stores went up to $2-$5 per piece but was not considered cheap back in 1946; their major selling point back then was the lifetime warranty and their durability over glassware.
Their salt and pepper shakers, which usually came in well-structured shapes, especially from 1960, sell for up to 100 dollars, especially if they’re in great condition. A complete bowl set can rake in $60-$100, while single pieces drop for $5-$7.
In any case, always aim for the oldest in the collection, as that’s where the real money is. Modern pieces won’t rake in as much money.
Where to Get Vintage Tupperware
From eBay to Etsy and loads of other online and physical stores, we’re providing you with a detailed list of places you can get vintage Tupperware around today.
Garage sales are one of our surest bets for purchasing Tupperware, especially if the organizer was a Tupperware company agent. These agents usually have limited edition pieces, demo sets, and special released sets in their attics.
Thrift stores are one if not the surest place to come across Tupperware products. Wondering how? Items in thrift stores are mostly preowned, and since Tupperware are common household products, homeowners can drop them off at thrift stores nearby instead of throwing them away. Do well to click on the links below:
Understand that there’s a clear distinction between vintage and antique items, and custom websites are strictly for selling vintage items. You may likely find sets and pieces of vintage Tupperware in your search.
Online Auction Sites
Auction sites like Rubylane, invaluable, and LiveAuctioneers have impressive amounts of Tupperware sets for sale. These auction sites have made it easy to get vintage Tupperware without the stress of sorting through needless piles of plastic or falling prey to illegitimate pieces.
Your next-door neighbor may be clearing off their basement or trying to make fast money; hence, they may organize a mini yard sale for residents to come and shuffle through piles of collectibles like fabric, furniture, dolls, and even Tupperware pieces or sets.
You can get the most genuine and authentic Tupperware pieces in yard sales that are safe, affordable, and without much signs of wear.
Vintage Tupperware is multifunctional, they help store edible stuff and even random objects like jewelry, pins, and buttons. Let’s refresh your memory from the beginning of this read up until now.
- The Tupperwarecompany not only made containers, but they also made toys that were educational, fun, and safe for kids.
- To identify your Tupperware, spot the numbers underneath the container and take it to the nearest Tupperware representative.
- Always consult your appraiser when dealing with vintage items- sometimes, you don’t know enough.
- Catalogs can help you identify the lines produced by Tupperware company during their early days.