Category:Make-Up Tree Models (Britains)

From The Brighton Toy and Model Index


Toy Brands and Manufacturers

Make-Up Tree Models, logo (BritainsCat 1967).jpg

Make-Up Tree Models (Britains)


After World War Two, Britains' revised range grew to include a very well-respected series of plastic clip-together model trees. Sometimes presented as being part of other ranges, the new "trees" range was so useful that it couldn't just be used with the 1:32 Britains Farm and Britains Floral Garden, but ... due to the scale of the trees being slightly undefined ... could also be used very effectively in gauge 0 model railway layouts.

Branding seems to have been slightly fluid -- the willow tree is listed as being part fo the Floral Garden series and not in the contemporary lisings of Make-Up Models ... but the customers probably didn't care.

Some of the "boxed" examples we have have the tree parts packaged in a nice card box with a protruding informaiton panel: others are "poly-bagged" and have the parts and a card informationalinsert in a blastic bag stapled to a card header, for hanging on a rack.

Customisation

Since the trees came apart, with the brown trunk and branches separable from the green plastic sprays of foliage, they also lent themselves to being spray-painted, if one wanted a more opaque matt brown for the tree bark. While translucency sort-of worked for the foliage, one could spray perhaps the undersides of the leaves in a matt colour to give a more realistic effect, or use a very fine metal "flake" in varnish to give a hint or suggestion of morning dew.

Lightly spray-painting adjacent trees's foliage ever-so-slightly different shades of green can also be effective, as can spraying a single bough's-worth of foliage slightly brownish for an individual dead or dying branch.

1967 catalogue text:

TREE MODELS THAT BRING A LAYOUT TO LIFE

These models have been designed to a scale suitable for "Standard Size" or "00" models and add life-like realism to Farm, Zoo, Railway, Racing or Floral Garden layouts. Easy to assemble with no painting or glueing. Foliage is easily attached to branches and twisted to shape whilst remaining firmly in position. All components are supplied with instructions, illustrated history and characteristics of the actual species.

— , Britains Ltd., , Britains Catalogue, , 1967

The trees

  • 1801Apple Tree12.7 cm height
  • 1806Silver Birch19.7 cm height
  • 1807Copper Beech19.7 cm height
  • 1808Willow Tree
  • 1809Fir Tree20.3 cm height
  • 1810Scots Pine21 cm height
  • 1814Date Palm16.5 cm height
  • 1815Coconut Palm21 cm height
  • 1820Poplar Tree29.1 cm height
  • 1822Oak Tree21.5 cm height
  • 1824Cedar Tree20.3 cm height
  • 2600Weeping Willow (Floral Garden)

In the Museum

All the plastic trees on the central gauge 0 model railway layout are by Britains.

There are also some opened and boxed examples displayed on and around the Britains Floral Garden display, in Cabinet 20, Arch Two.