Onkaparinga Advertising

Onkaparinga Light Sign

Back in the 80’s I acquired this rare, superbly made Aussie Bakelite / Perspex, plastic like, double sided, raised lettering, Onkaparinga Advertising light-box sign.

Onkaparinga is an Australian Company from SA who are well known for woolen blankets and dressing gowns. There were many woolen products they produced including
Rugs, hence this shop advertising light. You probably have a garment or rug yourself that you have kept from grandma in your closet!

The company who made this light-box, SA Plastics from St Peters have their name on the side of this light box with a phone number MF 1518 which dates to around 40-50’s.

I had contacted Onkaparinga Woollen Mill Museum in Lobethel SA, the old factory site for Onkaparinga … I offered to sell at a reasonable price first to them, before I may sell it on E-Bay, I wanted to do the right thing and offer to them for their museum as a great history piece.

They said that they wern’t interested in buying as this was not the logo they knew of and they had never seen this one associated with Onkaparinga … I told them I thought it was extremely weird that a shop owner has gone out and paid good money back in these days to make a light to advertise THEIR product, that clearly doesn’t make sense?

It’s origin has truly became more interesting after contacting them, and hence, I’ve decided to keep it as these things get more rare & collectible over time and it makes a great lounge light and talking point…. HOWEVER, to Clarify my findings..

I got some old adverts from the 50’s with this EXACT logo as on the light, it was used in four seperate Woman’s Weekly ads (see below). I contacted via e-mail the Woollen Mill again about my findings, but twice now no answer from them??
I think I stumped them on this one after they declared it had nothing to do with Onkaparinga, when indeed it certainly does, it’s a classic piece of Aussie Onkaparinga history, see, we can all still learn something!

In the Gallery there are pages from 1953 -59 Australian Womans Weekly, that depict the same style of font as on the light box, one ad even has the other dynamic ribbon style logo on one of the pictured blankets so both were used together at some stage..

Today you can still buy Onkaparinga blankets new or second-hand online… the logo has changed again with a more modern feel. See below for different Logo Styles on clothing tags.

The well known logo looks like the one off of a blanket. The black background one is the logo with the dynamic type ribbon on a dressing gown of mine. The logo in this light box is different. There is two other logo examples I have found, the blue one is from a very recent velour towel, the other from a old Mohair piece.


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