Anton Reiche showpiece chocolate mould in the form of Santa Claus, $15,000 (£11,900) at Leonard Auction.

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Both measuring a massive 3ft 2in (96.5cm) high, the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus pressed steel moulds were made by Anton Reiche for creating chocolates for seasonal window display.

Many times the size of a standard model, they made outsize prices too. Estimated at $500-700 each as part of a Clearwater, Chicago estate, Santa Claus hammered for $15,000 (£11,900) and the Easter Bunny for $11,000 (£8700).

Both fetched record sums and sold to online bidders via the LiveAuctioneers website.


Anton Reiche showpiece chocolate mould in the form of a bunny, $11,000 (£8700) at Leonard Auction.

Friedrich Anton Reiche (1845-1913), a Dresden manufacturer of sheet metal, founded Germany’s most important chocolate mould factory in 1870.

By 1895, the company had around 1100 employees and exported to all German-speaking countries – as well as the US where many collectors now reside. An old mill complex in Dresden now operates as the Museum Hofmühle with more than 1500 moulds in the permanent collection.