From barf bags to do-not-disturb signs, we count forty of the craziest things people collect!
The world’s largest collection of toenail clippings was collected as part of a 2013 scientific study. It’s made up of samples from 24,999 individuals.
Sharon Badgley has amassed an impressive collection of over 6,000 Santa Claus dolls. It takes her three weeks to arrange them in rows.
Maybe she’s hoping that when Santa asks her if she’s been naughty or nice, she can point to her creepy Santa shrine and be all, ‘Of course I’ve been nice! I love you, Santa! Have ten of my children!’ Wait, maybe that that would be naughty …
If you roll with goths or metal heads, chances are you might know someone who collects old antique equipment once used in mortuaries or funeral homes.
Some enthusiasts collect hearse funeral cars; others seek out Victorian mourning objects, such as lockets with hair from the deceased, or post-mortem photographs. You might even find an object imbued with an evil spirit. That’d be, like, bonus value.
Lewiston collector Ron Hood – not to be confused with outlaw Robin Hood – has one of the world’s most impressive Pez dispenser collections. He has over 3,000 and has transformed his entire basement into a display room.
That does sound faintly serial killer-ish. ‘Hey, girl, come into my dark basement. I’ll show you my Pezzzzz …’
North Carolina dermatologist Manfred S. Rothstein owns 675 back scratchers from 71 different countries. So next time you get an itch, contact him. If you scratch his back, he’ll scratch yours.
Sixty-five-year-old Carol Vaugn has an impressive collection of over 5,000 bars of soap. They come from all over the world and she’s been collecting them since 1991.
Freak Show Items
Travelling sideshows were once a highly popular American pastime. Nowadays, they’re a relic of bygone era, and memorabilia from old freak shows are worth big bucks.
Colourful canvas banners sell for thousands of dollars and some collectors hunt down creepy items like ‘Fiji Mermaids’ (a taxidermy combination of a monkey and fish) and other items associated with the darker side of carnival life.
Some say our obsession with celebrities is getting out of hand, but, clearly, those people are jealous because they didn’t secure the winning bid on a lock of their favourite celebrity’s hair.
There are literally thousands of hair collectors out. Some do it out of adoration; others cling to the hope they’ll one day clone a celebrity. In 2007, a clump of Che Guevara’s sold for $100,000. Kind of makes you wish stupid rich people would have their money confiscated.
Owls are cool-ass night birds of prey that have adorned just about every kind of kitsch knick-knack you can think of. Just ask leading owl authority, Pam Barker, whose 18,000 owl-inspired novelty items earned her a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
“What’s so weird about collecting dresses, Danger Dolan? My sister has, like, fifty in her closet right now!” I’ll tell you what’s weird: Paul Brockman from Germany owns 55,000 dresses! He claims they’re for his wife, but you just know he puts them on with some lipstick after a glass or two of red.