Napkin rings, late 1930s.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Made from brown cast phenolic resin moulded in the form of chickens, ducks and rabbits. By 1928, a method had been perfected of casting phenol formaldehyde without a filler, which had previously been a necesity when making the first synthetic thermosetting plastic, Bakelite. The result was the ability to produce cast phenolic resins in bright colours. Cast phenolic was used to imitate natural materials, such as amber and jade.