Small Bolex Items
September 20, 2006 -- Michael Tisdale
Although I enjoy collecting and using classic movie cameras, I'm always interested in finding small items related to Paillard-Bolex and other similar manufacturers.
The best part is that they don't take up much space, and they're usually very inexpensive. However, it's sometimes difficult to find information on items like this. The two pieces on this page are good examples of that.
The first appears to be a cufflink, or perhaps a shirt stud. Unfortunately, it doesn't work well for either purpose. It doesn't function like a normal cufflink, and the back is too awkwardly shaped to serve as a shirt stud. It appears to be made of brass; the logo measures 1/2" in diameter (about 12mm). On the rear of the piece, a maker's mark reads "Paul Kramer". On the back of the logo, the word "Pera" is engraved. I know that Paul Kramer was a maker's mark of badges and medals crafted in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. But I have no idea what "Pera" refers to.
The second item is a tie bar. It measures 2 1/2" wide (just over 6cm) with the same 1/2" diameter (12mm) logo. It doesn't have a maker's mark or any other inscription, but at least its purpose is obvious.
It's difficult to say if these items were manufactured for Paillard franchised dealers, technicians or other employees. Many photo companies in the '50s and '60s made items like these for promotional use (in the days before cheap branded shirts and baseball caps). However, Paillard-Bolex doesn't appear to have ever done this. I can only guess that these items were intended specifically for employees or dealers.
I'm always more than happy to be corrected, though. If you know more about these items, or have similar pieces, send me an email.