Here's what information I have so far...
Of the eight Precious Places furniture sets, five of them have rugs pictured with the furniture on the front of their boxes. These sets are the Bedroom, Bathroom, Baby's Nursery, Living Room and Canopy Bedroom. The website ThisOldToy.com (TOT) includes the rug sticker in the parts list for each of these sets, but says about the lithos: "This rug is pictured in the Fisher-Price dealer catalogue, but we are not sure if it was ever included in the sets sold in stores."
When I first began collecting PP several years ago (and was addicted to reading the TOT parts lists), I thought that I ought to investigate whether there were any rug stickers out there, so that I could add them to my collection if they existed. There seemed to be a pretty simple way to answer the question, i.e. just buy an unopened furniture set and see if there was a rug litho in the box. So that's what I did. I found a fairly inexpensive, never-been-opened Living Room furniture set on eBay, bought it, and with great anticipation, I opened it... only to discover that there was no rug sticker in the box.
"Case closed," I thought, "Furniture sets did not come with rug lithos."
And so for a couple of years, I had no reason to look any further into the mystery of the rug lithos.
Then one fateful day last August, I noticed this picture on a completed eBay listing:
Unfortunately, I didn't see the listing until after it was over, so I didn't get a chance to bid on this item, but as the picture clearly shows, there was an octagonal rug included with the Living Room furniture. I contacted the seller who told me that a) it was indeed a rug sticker, b) she believed it originally came with the Living Room set and c) it could not possibly have come with the Mansion, since these were her childhood toys and she'd never owned the Mansion.
This got me on the hunt for rug lithos and what do you know, they are rare, but some of them can be found. So far, I've got two in my collection, those from the Baby's Nursery and Canopy Bedroom sets.
Baby's Nursery Rug:
Canopy Bedroom Rug:
Now, you might be thinking to yourself, "That Canopy Bedroom rug sure looks familiar." And you'd be right. It is the same rug litho that was included with the Mansion set itself. But I have four reasons to be fairly certain that the one I have originally came with the Canopy Bedroom set.
1) It was sold in an eBay auction with the Canopy Bedroom furniture
2) It is just the rug sticker by itself and as far as I know the Mansion lithos always came on a large sheet like this:
3) I later saw another Canopy Bedroom set listed with the same rug litho.
4) Most importantly, the rug litho has the numbers 5177 on the edge and that is the Fisher Price item number for the PP Canopy Bedroom set.
So put it all together and it means that I am nearly 100% positive that the Living Room, the Baby's Nursery and the Canopy Bedroom each have a rug litho that was included with some (but not all) sets sold in stores.
Why wasn't a rug litho sold with every furniture set? I really have no good answer to that question. It is possible that only sets produced in 1990 had a rug litho. Or maybe only sets sold in a certain location (the United States, Canada or Europe for example) had rugs. I have so little information to go on, it's quite likely that we will never know the answer to the 'why' question.
One question I am still hoping to answer (and here's where I could really use your help) is...
Did the Bathroom and/or Bedroom sets also come with rug lithos?
I have not as of this moment, been successful in locating a rug litho (or picture of one) for the Bathroom or Bedroom sets. It would be really helpful to me if anyone out there has more information. Do you have any new in the box furniture sets? If so, did they come with rug stickers (lithos)?
I'd really love to get as much information as possible about these stickers so that we can all know what to look for when we're bidding on furniture sets! Post your comments, please!!!!