The vintage world is mysterious as it has so many stories of the past trapped in them! Adding to the mystical world, The Planet Social recently interacted with Aditya Vij who passionately travels the World and collects almost everything that is a collective…from cars to books to fossils to radios and even match boxes!
Lets read his story…
The journey to the past has been one; not to find the routes but to be rooted into the ever changing world of today. We live in a world where everything changes in no time, things are made for one time use and aesthetics are out of the window, sorry to say but ugly to a great extent. Art/artisan ship skills are all gone!!
I in my small endeavour want to put together the story of our past, which was so beautifully crafted by nature and man together. I want people to see how it was and how it has changed….. Its been a discovery cycle of fascination, a self exploring new category adding ongoing cycle, each one throwing bigger surprises and even bigger charms along the way of its exploration.
Dwelling into the past may not be a great Idea..but what’s present without its past. How does one relish the new without knowing the old . It’s the journey that matters not where we are. In this fast paced world a lot moves on and a lot is left behind.
It’s my consistent effort to save the past and keep it alive so the path followed is known and appreciated. While it is practically impossible to have all the aspects covered; the attempt and the focus is to achieve it.
Most collectors I ever came across in my life have had a uni-focus ; that is that they would do only one category and put it together, I never got hooked up to one category and all that is old looked gold and hence “ the collector of the world “ got coined up.
This is a passion which keeps the learning curve always going , new categories / new names / new brands keep coming up and surprises one every other day.
I have dawned many a hats in my life , till date from being a corporate slave , to being an entrepreneur, to being a professor to being a social mobilize , to being a collector , the to do more spirit has never been ebbed. The latest hat, I am looking forward to wearing is the one of a curator ; in my own private museum –Inshaallah the day shall soon arrive . I am on to make it happen .
Here’s a peep into my world of vintages !
The categories I have managed to put together are –
1. Cars—I have 15 vintage and classic ones ,,,the oldest being a 1928 Chevrolet . to a 1934 Austin Ruby to Dodge / Plymouth / Morris to Hudson to Vaxhall …and the latest is a Premier Padmini of 1980s.
2. Two wheeler — -I have 8 classic two wheelers ; the oldest ones being vespas Italian 1960’s to Lambrettas of 1960-70’s ; to a BSA Bond to Vijay super and Lamby Polo.
3. Cameras – I have a collection of 176 vintage and classic cameras where the oldest one dates back to 1890’s …and many from early 1900 to 1930’s and 1940’s … my collection includes many iconic brands from London & Stereoscopic Co to Norton to Agfas across decades to Mamais to Bell and Howell to Zeiss to Welta to Adox to Solida to Rolleiflex to Rolliecords.
4. Radios – I have been trying to put together the tube radios ..and my collection has 28 different radios with brands like Phillips , Murphy , Telerad , Ecko Roberts , Siemens ,Televoice ,KC.
5. Watches – wall clocks / table clocks and wrist watches – this is one of my biggest collection in terms of numbers …. I have 60 wall clocks of different decades all either vintage or classic ; I have iconic brands like Smiths / wehrle ? Napolean ? Rivex to Scientific to Ansonias to Crest.
My Table watch collection has 245 pcs in it ..it has again classic / vintage ones with brands like Wehrle / Favre-leuba / HES / Europas / Switos ? West clox / Anglo swiss watch co / Felock / Enicar / Pawas …and many more ..they are from british to german to French to American to Indian to eastern European ones.
My wrist watch collection – I have a small collection of 45 vintage and classic wrist watches and include brands like Favre Leuba / Henri Sandoz / Omega / West end prima / Roamer / Titus ?
Jayco to about 22 different models of HMT.
6. Books — My books collection goes to about 3000 books ..from 1800”s to early 1900’s … My collection has books by great authors …like Kipling / Rabindranath Tagore / Emma Watson, to titles like the Robinsn Crusoe / the Gardner / under the deodars to Vishnu Puran … my collection also includes American comics starting from 1940’s to 1970’s …then I have a huge no of amar chitra kathas to Indrajal comics to the Indian comics of 1970’s / 80’s and 90’s
…this also includes a big collection of Archies and Tinkles.
7. The smokers corner—lighters / old cigarette boxes / Tin boxes of cigarettes/ Match boxes / match box covers . This is another huge category … I have about 70 lighters all from different ages ..1950’s to 1990’s …. Airline lighters ..when one could smoke in airlines.
Old cigarette cardboard envelops .. I have a about 50-60 cigarette envelops of 1940’s to 1970’s Tin boxes of cigarettes …an era when cigarettes were packed and sold in tin boxes …about 20 of them . . . and this also has about 10 metal match box slip on covers.
8. Matchbox – A collection and history off the matchboxes with 4000 plus matchbox labels. They tell the story of the society …with land mark events and icons …this has been a collection that has been close to my heart .
9. British Memorabilia – The British left but their remnants have been a collectors treat..I have put together British marks across many categories – from the 1911 Delhi Durbar coronation plate ; to British pens to ink-pots to their boxes to Maps to the British Indian Army collectables.
10. Bollywood memorabilia — – In India we don’t survive without the Bollywood story. I have been collecting some vintage Bollywood related stuff. I have about 19 vintage Bollywood posters which date from 1940’s to 1980’s . I have the synopsis copies of the movies ..sold in the 1950’s and 1960’s …I have 2 movie projectors used to show the movies.
11. Type Writers — I have 20 type writers starting from 1909 to 1980 ; the brands included are Smith Crona Glaxie 12 ; Remington Rand 1946 model ; Jayco ; Olympia ; Remington 1909 model ; Remington desktop –Italian model ; Remington –Travel- riter ; Underwood 18 ; Smith Crona 301 ; Groma Callibri ; Smith crona S-55 1955 model ; Underwood light ; Brother cassette –correct o riter ; Remington –Sherry rand ; Remington portable 1921 model ; Remington 20 ; Smith Crona Electra automatic ; Brother Deluxe850TR.
12. Weights – Seer / baats — – I have about 78 baats and seer ; from 1800’s to 1950’s the story of weights / their foundries and how they differed.
13. Quirky Vintage pcs – maps / newspapers — – I have 4-5 maps ..which date from 1930’s to 1950;s ..the most interesting one is the Delhi Province Map under the British of 1930’s and shows the 3 developed areas in Delhi and all the 250 plus villages in Delhi . The second is a map of delhi of 1950 when the Diplomatic enclave came up . Apart from this I have old news papers ; the most iconic one of these is a 1920’s news weekly from New Zealand …the pics in the same are an eye opener.
14. Fossils / prehistoric man stone tools – My oldest collection …. Certified fossils and pre -historic man tools..dating to 1000’s of years old.
15. Tin boxes – I have about 80 plus tin boxes which represent different eras and different stories …each one a history icon in itself. My tin box collection goes back to 1930’s and covers till 1980’s.
16. War memorabilia / medals — – 17 war medals ; from second world war to medals awardee to Indian British soldiers to the 1965 war to the Kargil war …. Just a small token of the laurels some got while fighting for the nation.
17. MUSIC and its tools – I have a small collection of Gramophones / turn tables / music boxes …about 7-8 of them put together along with a couple of musical instruments ( vintage /classic ones). Each category has its own charm and significance. Each one has a history, changing trend over decades. Each symbolizing changing times, new technologies. New ideas, new developments, the changing human mind.
The cameras…revolutionary from plate exposure to digital world.
Cars from wooden wheels spooked; over to the radials. From open to down glass over to the moon roofs.
Two wheelers from shaft gears held in hand to twitch gears .
Radios from tubes to digital world radios.
Watches from winding to sun clocks; clocks from pendulums to quartz to digitals.
Books the evergreen charmers
The posters hand painted to lithos to digital ones.
The British way of life never ceases to charm and amaze.
The weights story ..from baats to seers to kilos .