All About Piggy Banks

    The piggy bank is a classic item that people associate with saving money. Many piggy banks have graced the shelves of children, with their images of a fat round pig available to hold their coins. Their purpose was to collect coins for later use, but retrieving the money was not always easy. Piggy banks have also been given as gifts and collected for various reasons beyond simple money saving. 

    History of the Piggy Bank

    Throughout history, piggy banks have changed and evolved, but their original purpose was one of fiscal responsibility. Families who lived during the Middle Ages collected and saved coins for future use in jars made of clay. The type of clay most commonly used was called Pygg, and was an orange earthenware substance that was frequently utilized for household items. The Pygg jar, in an attempt to be replicated by potters several centuries later, exchanged the use of the word “Pygg” for “Pig” and the early “pig banks” were created. Piggy banks have since evolved into the iconic objects they are known as today.

    • Piggy Bank History: The development of the piggy bank with instructions about how to make one at home.


    Piggy Bank Collecting

    Because piggy banks have been made for so many years, the hobby of collecting them remains popular. Piggy banks are available for the avid collector, from vintage antiques to perky, kid-friendly objects. They no longer are simply in the shape of a pig, but have evolved into various designs and shapes. These are typically still referred to as piggy banks, even without the pig shape, but some collectors refute these as being real. Piggy banks are even made throughout the world, and can be purchased online or through specialty shops.

    • Busacca Gallery: Victorian cast iron piggy bank example, available for display or purchase.


    Piggy Bank Art

    A form of design for piggy banks is to mold, paint, or fashion them in various ways. This retains the original purpose of the bank and may even resemble a pig, but artistically is pleasing to collect or admire. Piggy bank art collections can be viewed online or at various locations. There is even a piggy bank museum located in Japan for the enjoyment of bank enthusiasts. Piggy bank art is a form of self-expression that can be demonstrated in multiple ways.

    • Piggy Bank: Custom piggy banks by various artists.
    • Swine Art: A collection of pig-related works, including a large piggy bank.
    • Ritzenhoff: A gallery of piggy banks designed in Germany.


    Miscellaneous Piggy Bank Resources

    For those interested in piggy banks, there are various links and ideas available to learn more. Information can be found about collecting, purchasing, or selling piggy banks. There are also many toys, early banks, and crafts for kids related to piggy banks. Depending on the area of interest, piggy banks offer much enjoyment beyond their traditional purpose.

    • Bev Hattaway: Custom made ceramic coin banks and piggy banks.
    • Kid Ideas: Instructions about how to make a piggy bank out of a milk jug.
    • Piggy Bank Craft: Another site about how to make a piggy bank using items from home.
    • Oompa Toys: Various piggy banks for children or collecting available for purchase.
    • One World Projects: Various styles of piggy banks made from different countries around the world and available for purchase.
    • Money Savvy Pig: An interesting take on the piggy bank for today’s money savers.

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