Looking Glass Chess Set
from “Alice in Wonderland”
Pieces reproduced from the John Tenniel Illustrations in the MacMillan Classics edition of Lewis Carrol’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass
Solid hand castings in stone and resin, hand glazed, with
Commanding Queen, Jolly King, Cowled Bishop, Horse Head Knight, Man in Castle and Ballerina Pawn
An AlpSco Design ©1966 Adult Leisure Products Corporation Locust Valley, NY. Cat. No. 20
Mine does not have the box or board and the white king’s feet broke on shipping (Yes, I mended him). Bought on Ebay 5/2/2016 for $93.94
The only thing I don’t like about this is that the White Queen is just the Red Queen in white. In the book, the White Queen was quite untidy and I wish that the makers had made her actually look as she did in the book. They got everything else just right, however!
Having a hard time finding any information about the maker… or similar sets.
Chessmen only/full set. Bought on Ebay 4/24/2016 for $29.99
My oldest sets:
Dad’s travel Staunton set. I don’t think we ever used it because it’s very small and unweighted and the board does not even open all the way flat. Plus we had the other awesome set, why would we use this one? I have no idea at all how old this one is or who made it but I think it’s an awful set. If it wasn’t my Dad’s, I’d get rid of it.
I have this exact set, except mine is on a handmade leather board. It appears the example shown here has been modified. Some of the pawns (cards holding brushes) are atop the square base mounts (un-centered at that), and some are not. Alice (white queen) and two of the rabbits (knights) are not on their base blocks, and the black queen is on some sort of dissimilar base. In my set, all the main pieces are atop the square base blocks, and all the pawns stand freely on smaller blob-like bases.
My set was purchased in a shop along the California coast during a road trip with my parents. I was little (1970’s) and only vaguely recall it being called The Toy Soldier Factory, or perhaps just The Soldier Factory. I also seem to recall her telling me at some point (years ago) that they don’t make them anymore, so what’s out there is all there is.
Posted September 5, 2014 at 8:47 pm | Permalink
I am employed by the daughter of the late owners of The Soldier Factory, which she inherited. The old sign is literally sitting in front of her shop. I can confirm that this set was most certainly made in California. We have the ORIGINAL moulds for this set, possibly missing one piece we believe was the rook on Alice’s side, as well as the J.R.R. Tolkein complete set. I have cast a set of all the other Wonderlands but have not located this one yet, although its possibly just in a different storage spot. However, I cannot tell by your photos but does your set have four Mad Hatters? Can you possibly send pictures of the rooks, nights, and bishops? I am hoping to be able to find the missing piece, or re-create a new piece and mould to cast the set. If I cannot find out what it was I am thinking of making a Walrus possibly. Anyone interested in purchasing one, plain or hand-painted, feel free to email me 🙂