Tagged with 'Coins'

ANDA Money Expo 2023 Special Releases Are Here!

The Australian numismatic community is eagerly anticipating the first of the ANDA’s (Australasian Numismatic Dealer’s Association) regional expos, taking place in Melbourne this February! As a proud member of the ANDA, Downies Collectables is thrilled to announce that they have managed to secure a limited number of the show’s eagerly anticipated special releases for their customers. Read on to find out more…

The ANDA is the professional body representing individuals and businesses dealing in coins and banknotes throughout Australasia. Dedicated to advancing the hobby of coin collecting, educating the public about numismatics, and safeguarding professionalism amongst dealers. Founded in Victoria, it has been guiding and promoting the Australian numismatic community for over 25 years!

Perhaps the most important contribution of the ANDA has been the annual events it spearheads across Australia. The ANDA’s Money Expos are open to the general public for a gold coin donation, and are a great way for coin collectors and dealers to come together to celebrate their passion.

The Melbourne Money Expo 2023 is the first of these annual events and will take place from February 18-19 at the Malvern Town Hall. Events coming up later in the year include the Brisbane Money Expo 2023 at the Queensland Sport and Athletics Centre from May 13-14, and the Perth Money Expo 2023 at the South Perth Community Hall from July 15-16.

No matter which expo you attend, you can expect a thrilling time as leading local and interstate dealers, as well as the general public, gather for a massive two days of buying and selling. It’s the perfect opportunity to find that must-have piece for your collection and network with the specialists. It also promises to be a fantastic day out for the whole family, giving the kids a chance to learn about coin collecting and to get into a new hobby! Whether you are looking to expand your collection, or secure valuations and grading

 authentications for your coins and banknotes, there will be a number of experts from across the country ready to assist you.

Importantly, the ANDA Money Expos are also where the association launches exclusive and limited-edition product releases from Australia’s leading mints and institutions, like The Perth Mint and Australia Post! This year, the exclusive releases are particularly special, but if you can’t make it to view these amazing coins and presentations in person, don’t worry, Downies Collectables has secured a limited number of the special releases headlining the expo….

Melbourne ANDA Money Expo 2023 $1 Kookaburra Helmeted Honeyeater Privymark 1oz Silver Brilliant Uncirculated Coin

An official issue of the 2023 Melbourne Money Expo, this Australian legal tender coin from the Perth Mint boasts the signature 2023 kookaburra motif. Also featuring a vibrant full-colour privymark portraying the Helmeted Honeyeater! Part of an exclusive limited edition of just 2,000, each coin is crafted from 1oz of 99.99% pure, sparkling silver!
Melbourne ANDA Money Expo 2023 $1 Year of the Rabbit Stamp & Coin Cover
An official 2023 Melbourne ANDA Money Expo issue, this presentation is a unique tribute to the Year of the Rabbit. Underpinned by the Perth Mint’s Uncirculated Year of the Rabbit $1 coin, packaged in a superbly illustrated, individually numbered cover. Just 500 have been issued!

Make sure to head to Downie’s website to get your hands on one of these special issues early, as they are guaranteed to be snapped up fast!


Treasures In Your Change

What you should look out for!

In the fields of art, literature and jewellery, for example, people think that great rarities and treasures are found only safely hidden away in museums, government archives or perhaps in the homes of the rich and famous. Sometimes, however, you only need look at the coins in your pocket to find a genuine treasure!

In this blog, over the next few weeks, we will take a look at some of the coins in circulation that you might want to keep an eye out for – and what they might be worth.

Low denomination, high value!

Throughout history, the world of coinage has always had the capacity to throw up unlikely little gems that can be found in change. Often, those gems are low denomination issues – coins that someone might have had in their pocket on any given day – but are of the highest rarity.

In the USA, for example, there is the 1943 Lincoln Copper Penny (can fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars at auction), and 1913 Liberty Head Nickel (worth millions!) In the United Kingdom, there is the extraordinarily rare 1933 Penny – an unlikely rarity that has had generations frantically searching through their coins, and that could be worth £250,000 (AUD$400,000+) today! Australia has its iconic lower denomination rarities as well, such as the 1923 Halfpenny and the King of Australian Coins, the 1930 Penny.

The 1930 Penny – the ultimate ‘treasure in change’!

1930 Penny Fine

Australia’s highest profile rarity, the 1930 Penny is a great example of a true ‘people’s rarity’. Believed to have been struck during die-testing, then set aside and put into circulation with a later penny issue, the 1930 Penny is worth anything from $25,000 to $60,000 in circulated grade.

Apart from the statistical rarity, with approximately 1,500 known surviving examples, the 1930 Penny is also underpinned by undeniable romance. As Australia’s second lowest denomination at the time, the humble penny could have been found in any pocket – from paperboy to Prime Minister! Anyone could have struck it rich by finding the famed ’30!

You won’t find a 1930 Penny in your change today, of course, with the conversion to decimal currency in 1966, but there are plenty of other interesting – and potentially valuable – coin dates, types and varieties to watch out for.

Decimal Dynamite!

So, what sort of coins are worth looking out for in change?

Since decimalisation in February 1966, virtually all of Australia’s coinage has been struck at the Royal Australian Mint (RAM) in Canberra. The RAM was established in 1965 specifically to facilitate the changeover from predecimal to decimal currency, and has always been armed with state-of-the-art minting equipment. Under these circumstances, you would think everything would work out perfectly, and every coin would be exactly as it was intended to be – but not so!

Error coin types…

Even the latest in minting technology and the most rigorous of quality control is not enough to stop blunders making it through the system and escaping into circulation. Off-centre strikes, upset dies, broadstrikes, split planchets, brockages, double-portrait or reverse issues, off-metal strikings – there are many types of Error coins, across all decimal denominations.

With most Errors worth way more than face value – the 2000 $1/10c Mule is worth thousands in better grade – their existence is a good reason to keep a close eye on your change.

Intended or known Varieties…

Sometimes the variation in the design of a coin is not due to a mistake – it can simply be due to a change in process, or an upgrade in technology. So, for example, the positioning of the reverse die in the production of the 1972 5c varied slightly, and, as a result, we have a ‘High Echidna’ type and a ‘Low Echidna’ type!

The 1994 Year of the Family 50c is known by ‘wide date’ and ‘narrow date’ types, and the 2000 Millennium 50c can be found with part of the Australian Flag on the reverse both raised from the surface of the coin, and, on rare occasions, struck into the coin – known as an incuse strike. These are all ‘Varieties’, rather than Errors.

Waltzing Matilda 1995 $1 C Mintmark Uncirculated Coin

Not-issued-for-circulation commemorative collector coins…

For several decades, the RAM has produced coins that were not intended to circulate at all, being struck in limited numbers, specially packaged, and sold to collectors. Just a

 few of many, many examples, the RAM has issued a 1995 Waltzing Matilda $1, a 2000 Victoria Cross $1 and a 2007 Lifesavers 20c.

These coins – and a multitude of other not-issued-for-circulation types – are struck to the same specifications as coins found in circulation, and are genuine, official Australian legal tender issues. Thus, although unusual, it does happen that these will be found in change – definitely coins to look out for!

Low-mintage issues…

Of course, a coin doesn’t have to be ‘different’ in some way to be a ‘treasure in your change’ – sometimes it’s simple mathematics! The RAM strikes coinage to demand, and what is required for circulation and, naturally enough, mintages vary wildly.

The 1985 10c, for example, had a mintage of just two million – the lowest of the denomination! The 1993 50c had a mintage of just one million, and if we look to the $1 coin, we see some extraordinarily low mintages. The 2014 Roos $1 had a mintage of 1.052 million, the 2016 Decimal Currency $1 had a mintage of just 560,000, whilst the RAM states that the 2022 Roos $1 mintage is a mere 10,000!

Remembering that Australian coin denominations are usually struck in the tens of millions – if not 100 million and more – these mintages are astonishingly low, and the aforementioned coins are naturally seldom seen in change.

When you also take into account all of the sought after colour $2 commemorative coins – virtually all of which have been produced in very small numbers – you’ll see that low-mintage issues give you a very good reason to keep your eyes peeled.

Not-issued-for-circulation standard types…

Throughout Australia’s decimal history, there are standard, non-commemorative dates in certain denominations that were never issued at all!

In this case, the particular coin was not required for circulation, and only appears in collector issues – primarily the RAM’s annual collector Mint Set. Some examples include the 1985 5c, the 1995 10c, the 1990 20c, the 1992 50c, the 1991 $1 and the 1991 $2. All not-issued-for-circulation standard, non-commemorative dates are worth well over face value, and well worth keeping an eye out for.

So, what to look out for? And how much is it worth? Watch this space!

Regardless of what sort of coin it is – an Error, a Variety, a low-mintage issue and so on – whether it’s a treasure or not will depend on the laws of supply and demand. If demand for a particular coin exceeds supply, then the price will inevitably rise. That ‘treasure in your change’ may be worth many times the face-value! Or it may be of historic value only, or simply of interest. Of course, that traditional ‘search through change’ is not only about finding a coin worth thousands – it’s also about the thrill of the chase, and just finding that something a little different.

Over the next few weeks, every 10 to 14 days, we’ll assess each Australian denomination, what you should look out for, and how much such coins might be worth. Until we meet again, happy hunting!

@downies_collectables Here’s what rare coins to look out for in your change! ????   #CoinCollecting #RareCoins #RareAustralianCoins #AustralianCoins #CirculatingCoins #MuleCoins #RedPoppy #IncusedCoins #CoinCollectors #cointok ♬ original sound - Downies_Collectables

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Hop into 2023 with the Year of the Rabbit!

Following hot on the heels of New Year’s Eve revelries to ring in 2023, the world is now excitedly gearing up to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Traditionally known as the Chinese New Year, this annual 15-day festival is one of the most important holidays in Chinese culture. Devotees will bound into the Year of the Rabbit with an explosion of colour, revelry and red envelopes, in a magnificent celebration that has gained many western fans in recent years.

Observed for thousands of years across Asia and the Asian diaspora, this colourful and joyful period has been widely embraced in Australia, and for good reason! Sydney's Lunar New Year celebrations are thought to be one of the largest outside Asia as millions join in to exalt new beginnings, family, goodwill, and love!

Originally an agricultural holiday, the ‘Spring Festival’ is believed to have originated during China’s Shang Dynasty. Lunar New Year carries with it a trove of traditions that are based on an amalgamation of history, symbolism, superstition and myth. People celebrate Lunar New Year in different ways depending on their culture and family history, but many common threads unite adherents in setting an intention for a lucky and prosperous future.

Because the Lunar New Year is determined by the cycles of the moon the dates change each year. 2023 Lunar New Year falls on January 22, with revelries lasting until February 5. A colourful tapestry of traditions, the festival is distinguished by firework displays, red clothing and beautiful paper decorations intended to usher out the old year and bring forth luck and prosperity. There are customs to honour relatives who have died, and bless loved ones and the young with coins and money in red envelopes. The culmination of festivities is the Lantern Festival, during which people hang glowing lanterns in temples in a night-time parade.

An important tradition is the designation of a zodiac animal to each new year, with the attributes of that animal determining the fortunes of those born under its influence. The origin of zodiac animals lies in the legend of the Jade Emperor, who decided that there should be a way to measure time. It is said that he commanded all animals to compete in a race, with the first 12 animals being rewarded by having a year dedicated to them.

The rabbit is the fourth animal in the 12-year Chinese lunar cycle. A demure animal reliant on intellect rather than strength, the rabbit is believed to manifest longevity, prosperity, hope and peace and is representative of the moon in Chinese culture. Those born in the year of this auspicious creature are seen as lucky, kind and sensitive. Rabbits are considered social beings whose attention to detail make them great scholars. This animal also makes for an elegant and eye-catching artistic subject and there are a range of exceptional and exclusive coins available to commemorate it…

Make sure to celebrate the Lunar New Year in style, or honour the rabbit in your life in the best way possible! Downies Collectables has a huge range of spectacular Lunar New Year coins and commemoratives in a range of precious metals, including pure gold and silver, to suit every budget! Plus, there’s FREE SHIPPING available for a limited time, making Downie’s customers some very lucky bunnies! So bound into action now and make the Year of the Rabbit one to remember!

Gifting is a wrap at Downies!

Your collector dad’s birthday is coming up, you need a special gift for the kid that loves Harry Potter, your anniversary is fast approaching and your partner has it all, it’s almost Christmas and you don’t know where to begin! No worries, we have you covered with unique, quality gifts for everyone on your list, no matter the occasion. Guaranteed to please on any budget…

If Downies Collectables has a superpower, it’s helping our customers find stand-out gifts for those they love. Surprise and delight with a special pressie that shows just how much you care for, and know, the intended recipient. A gift should not only be beautiful, but thoughtful, taking into consideration the lucky guy or gal’s interests and passions – that way it will be treasured forever. It’s well worth the effort when you see just how much the perfect gift can brighten that special someone’s day!

You no longer need to spend countless hours looking for the ideal gift. We’ve put together a comprehensive gift guide to help you through the process, reduce your stress and give your nearest-and-dearest a gift that they’ll really appreciate. Our gift ideas are guaranteed to make you a legend amongst friends and family. We have so many options, whether your gift is for a pop-culture fan, motoring enthusiast, sport fanatic, nature lover, coin collector, history buff and everything in between, you’ve come to the right place to find something for everyone. Browse and be inspired…

Sleigh-it with these unique Christmas gifts
Get into the festive spirit with awe-inspiring gifts that will have everyone on your list jingling with joy! What’s more, it’s so easy – with great ideas for him, her and the kids all in one place. Best of all, you don’t have to spend a bomb to put the perfect pressie under the tree, with awesome finds for under $50! We even have a Christmas card boasting genuine legal tender festive coins from around the world. So don’t wait another minute! We’ve done all the hard work for you - browse games, coins, commemoratives, figurines, books and more now!

Thrilling gifts for the motoring enthusiast
Get ready to rev your engine and race into the most exciting selection of auto-themed coins and supercar memorabilia in Australia! These eye-catching collectables are MUST-HAVE gifts for racing fans. You’ll find model cars, replicas, super car-themed coin collections, books and games celebrating Holden, Ford and more…

Best gifts for pop-culture fans
Give the pop-culture fans what they really want! We have ‘super’ Marvel-themed coins, out-of-this-world Star Wars gifts, magical Harry Potter pressies and even band-themed coins that will rock your bestie’s world. Let Downies Collectables be your gifting superhero…

Awesome gifts for kids, according to kids!
Welcome to a world of fun gifts that will excite and amaze every child and get them learning and exploring before they even realise it! Coin collections are a great gift for kids – exciting, novel and a way for them to learn about geography, numismatics, history and so much more! We also have a range of pop culture-themed collectables and commemoratives, games and books that will get them exploring different themes, off their devises, and engaging with the whole family! From Australiana and animals to Disney and Star Wars, explore the possibilities today!

Precious pressies for coin collectors
A gift from Downies Collectables is what every coin collector desires! We have the latest legal tender coins from the world’s leading mints in a range of precious metals to feed their passion and fascinating books on numismatics to keep them entertained for hours. Who says money isn’t a great gift? For the coin collector, there’s nothing more exciting than Australian decimal and pre-decimal coins, gold sovereigns, penny sets, rare coins, ancient coinage and so much more. Browse now and make sure your loved one keeps ‘coining it’ with a very special gift.

Gorgeous and thoughtful gifts for her
We have a gift for the special woman in your life - mother, wife, best friend, daughter and everything in between! Guaranteed to put a smile on her face, our collectables, coins, figurines and jewelry gift ideas will impress her with their special meaning and eye-catching beauty. From Royal Selangor collectables she can display with pride, timeless gold-tipped roses, and a few Disney princesses, what more could a girl ask for?

Great gifts for guys
Men don’t need to be tough to shop for, whether you’re shopping for a mate’s birthday, the hubby’s anniversary gift, a beloved granddad, or dad’s big day, we have everything he needs to fill his man-cave! Discover themed collectables, models, books and games for the motor-enthusiast and sports fan, coins for the numismatic expert and rarities for the historian. Impress him with the gift that keeps on giving – exciting monthly subscriptions on every passion imaginable, from James Bond to Star Wars. Whether you’re in the mood to spoil, or spend under $50, we have a gift to please.

Gifts that won’t break the bank – under $50!
Just because they’re not pricy, doesn’t mean they’re not seriously impressive! Heavy on thoughtfulness and fun, but light on the wallet, these brilliant gifts under $50 cover a wide range of interests. From collectable coins, coin and stamp sets, games and commemoratives - you will find a unique gift sure to excite.

Wowza! Impressive gifts for life’s important occasions
Want to make an impression and mark an important event in style? We have the special gift you need for all those important occasions – the lunar New Year celebration, weddings, Christenings, and milestone birthdays. Mark a birth or engagement with a meaningful gold coin, give the history buff an ancient Greek of Roman coin for their big birthday, or gift your 007-obsessed husband the full James Bond coin collection that will make his year! The options for remarkable gifts are endless…

Gifts from ‘Down Under’

Downies have a wide range of Australiana-themed gifts, coins and commemoratives for those enamored with everything ‘down under’! Limited edition coins celebrating Australia’s unique wildlife in a range of precious metals make spectacular gifts, and if you’re shopping for someone who is an Aussie sport, or motorsport fan – we have the perfect gift for them too! Plus, we offer the widest range of Australian decimal coins that will make any collector’s day.

Fun and games!
All the classics with a twist! Looking for a gift idea for that special person that combines their passions and interests with all the fun of ‘game night’? Look no further, we offer puzzles and legendary board games like monopoly, top trumps, cluedo and more in a variety of exciting themes – from James Bond, to Marvel, to Harry Potter and even Holden!

Our top gift picks for the experts
Know a history buff, or coin collector, that you would love to spoil (and impress) with the perfect gift? Shopping for the serious collector no longer needs to be an educated guess on your part, because we have curated a fantastic collection of books, rare coins, banknotes, stamps and historically-themed commemoratives that will leave any expert weak at the knees. Whether their interest lies in war memorabilia, or they have a passion for rare Australian coins, gold sovereigns, royal history or ancient coins, we have some fascinating treasures just waiting to be discovered, and gifted… 

The Sesame Street Official Coin Collection by Macquarie Mint

“This is Sesame Street. A place where people, birds and monsters all live in perfect harmony…”

Elmo has some great news for all his fans (young and old). His friends at Macquarie Mint love him so much they’ve decided to dedicate an entire coin collection to the Sesame Street gang! Treat yourself and be transported back to a time when things were simpler and just plain delightful with memories that will make you smile. Ahead of its time, Sesame Street has been dispensing wisdom for over 50 years with its wacky characters, jammy jingles and love of learning.

The fun times won’t stop with the new officially licensed Sesame Street Coin Collection that celebrates the show that defined generations! New or old, what really gives Sesame Street its universal appeal is its line-up of characters. Each unique, smart, funny and endearing.

Enter stage left Elmo, Cookie Monster, Bert & Ernie, Big Bird and The Count to name a few. These coins present the most lovable personalities like you’ve never seen them before. Cookie Monster was even said to have exclaimed “Om nom nom nom, these coins look good enough to eat!” when they were presented for his approval. That’s some serious praise!

Sweeping the Clouds Away

Beautifully designed, with eye-catching colours that really pop against mirror-like 24K gold plating. Each pristine, Proof quality coin spans 45mm and can be stored in a fantastic complimentary folder to keep the whole gang together.

Macquarie Mint are offering subscribers an exclusive deal to kick off the collection with a bang! Your first delivery includes a second coin – COMPLETELY FREE! This is a special 2-for-1 deal exclusive only to subscribers. There are some other special surprises along the way too!

Collecting with Macquarie Mint offers subscriber only benefits! Convenient monthly deliveries and peace of mind whilst keeping you in control at the same time. Subscribe now and you’ll be secure in the knowledge that each item has been sourced at the highest quality.

Start Collecting the Fun Now!

Fans and collectors alike will need to act fast though, as only 10,000 collections are available worldwide. With legions of collectors not wanting to miss the show, swift action is recommended. You will be very grumpy if you miss out - no offence Grouch.


Remembering the life of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

On April 9th 2021, the world was saddened by the news of the sad passing of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

In his 99 years, Prince Philip’s contribution to the world was unmistakable.

He spent over 10 years in the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Airforce – even fighting against the Nazi’s in World War II.  

In 1939 he was asked to escort King George VI’s daughters through the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth. It was there that he fell in love with his future wife – Elizabeth II. The two exchanged letters over the following years and eventually married in 1947.

Proactive as ever, the Queen insisted Philip have “place, pre-eminence and precedence" next to her at all times when possible.

Philip has supported his wife, Queen Elizabeth II throughout her reign. Standing by her side at ceremonies, dinners and world tours, Philip was a vital bone in the body of the British Royal Family.

As the longest-serving British Royal consort, he was a patron of roughly 800 organizations, but his legacy will be most felt in his establishment of the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

To help younger generations thrive, Philip pioneered the Award in 1956. It has since expanded to 144 nations. Over 775,000 young Australians have participated in the award, which recognises adolescents who undertake self-improvement activities. Many young people have seen their lives enriched as a direct result.

The Royal Family on Coins

Over the years the Royal Family’s milestones and achievements have been celebrated on coins and commemoratives. Further tributes to Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II are available online at Downies.com.

Pay tribute to the man who gave the Queen ‘constant strength and guide’ throughout their life together.



New Gruffalo Coins Coming Soon

Celebrating 20 years of the famous children’s book, two more Gruffalo coins are about to take the Australian coin collecting world by storm.


He has terrible tusks, and terrible claws,

And terrible teeth in his terrible jaws.

He’s the Gruffalo!

-  Julia Donaldson, The Gruffalo

In 1999, a children’s book was released that would captivate the hearts and imaginations of kids across the globe. British author, teacher, singer and songwriter Julia Donaldson had struck gold with The Gruffalo, her charming tale of a canny mouse evading danger in the woods.

Adapted from a Chinese folk tale, the premise was simple.

Afraid of being eaten by the many sinister creatures asking him to dinner, a mouse invents an even greater foe: the gruffalo. His plan works, deterring his would-be attackers … Until he actually encounters a gruffalo, that is! Now what will he do?

The Gruffalo – a storybook phenomenon

Paired with delightful illustrations by Axel Scheffler, the story was an instant smash-hit. It spawned a follow-up in The Gruffalo’s Child, multiple stage plays, a film, toys and even a theme park ride. And this year, thanks to the Royal Mint, this whimsical tale has received more tributes: in cupro-nickel and precious sterling silver.

Initially released in February this year, a first wave of coins featured the Gruffalo’s iconic face. The Gruffalo proof coin, struck from sterling silver, sold out within hours of release. Demand was fierce, with children and collectors alike eager to get their hands on these beautiful British coins. And now, fans’ hearts are about to skip a beat: there’s a new design on the way.

The new Gruffalo coin

The mouse and the gruffalo face off against one another in this captivating scene, straight from the pages of the book. It has been captured in vivid full-colour on the silver Proof version, while the Brilliant Uncirculated coin showcases the Royal Mint’s superb minting standards.

The coins will be available for order later this month, so stay tuned for more information!

But for now, if you walk in the woods, best to be careful, just in case.  There’s no such thing as a Gruffalo …as far as we know.

Want to add the newest Gruffalo coins to your collection? Keep an eye on Downies’ Gruffalo range for updates!


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