Vintage Toy & Decor dishes up nostalgia on Facebook

PHILIPPINES - Chaiyot Sertsaibua, 34, plays the bass guitar, but he splits off some of his passion for old-fashioned stuff. His garage is wall-to-wall vintage cars and he and his pals had a stall in the Rod Fai Night Market where they sold tin toys from the 1950s and '60s, as well as great old furniture and musical instruments.

"Vintage Toy & Decor is a hobby," Chaiyot says. "I started creating vintage cars out of my own head eight years ago. I have some mechanical skill, so I select good spare parts, both old and new, from various shops and markets.

"In 2010 I started collecting rare tin toys because they're so charming and clever in the way they fold up on the power of one small motor."

When the Rod Fai market closed, Chaiyot moved his inventory online, letting collectors sift through his wares on Facebook. It's got videos showing what's in stock and how the mechanical toys function. Meanwhile space in his house serves as a small warehouse that customers can visit by appointment.

Most of the toys come from Japan, and anyone around Chaiyot's age will succumb to nostalgia when they survey the goodies.

There's a 1986 Super Apollo Space Capsule with nosecone that lights up. It not only rolls around with a battery's help, it will pop open a door to reveal a miniature but realistic TV set inside. Nasa also provided the inspiration for a 1962 Super Astronaut robot that packs laser guns and makes noises when it's shooting.

"I brought a lot of the tin toys at Klong Thom Market, but some come from a friend's loft, most from Japan but also from America and Germany," Chaiyot says. "The price depends on the functions, design and whether it's still in the original packaging."

A good-tempered Charley Weaver Bartender doll, also from 1962, will demonstrate his cocktail-shaking technique - until he gets drunk and his face turns red and smoke comes out of his ears.

There's a 1960 Aircraft Vehicle with guns that light up, a 1950 Cabin Cruiser from Ohio Art and a 1970 Continental Blue Locomotive train. You can find 20-year-old vintage die-cast model cars in various scales, a set of 50-year-old metal chairs of the type used in theatres, and even a sousaphone.

That's in case you always wanted to play the tuba but never got the chance. Now you do.