Category: Toronto

A Peek Inside The MZTV Museum of Television & Archive

It’s great having a new and modern Television but there is just something special and beautiful about TV’s of the past (Don’t you agree?) So you can imagine my excitement when I was recently able to pay a private visit to Toronto’s MZTV Museum of Television & Archive thanks to Zoomer Radio. It was an incredible visit with so much history under one roof that I need to go back to make sure I did not miss anything.

Museum of Television Toronto

For today’s blog post I am going to give you a peek, just a peek into what the museum has to offer because if possible I want you to go and see it sometime yourself (so why ruin all the surprises in this post).

Museum Of Television Toronto Ontario Canada

Mission Statement:

The MZTV Museum and Archive seeks to protect, preserve and promote the Receiving Instruments of Television History. Whereas other North American Museums of Broadcasting feature Programs, ours is unique in its focus on the History of the Technology, as well as on the Sets Themselves.

Together with related original papers, discs, books, magazines, toys and other ephemera the collection offers some 10,000 objects to scholars and students as well as the general public.

The Museum’s mandate is to exhibit the world’s most comprehensive collection of North American Television Receivers for the formative fifty-year period from the 1920s to the 1970s. The MZTV Museum also aims to tell the story of the medium and to contribute to the understanding of the impact of television on the people who watch it

Museum Of Television Toronto Ontario Canada

Lets begin with the Pioneers of Television section. This was a great high level overview of all the important people who made Televisions possible. I enjoyed this intro because it really set a nice tone for the rest of the museum tour.

Don’t like reading? No worries the museum also has a wonderful FREE app you can download with audio of the content, extra images and videos to give a little more to what is featured in front of you. The app was a great addition to my tour.

The pioneers of Television vintage inn blog museum of television

Now before reading ahead, who of my readers knows what role ‘Felix the Cat’ played in the beginning of Television? If you know the answer, pat yourself on the back and then continue reading below.

Felix the Cat the original Museum of Television

The Answer: Pictured above is the original papier-mache figurine of Felix purchased at F.A.O. Shwartz in NYC. This figurine of Felix would become Televisions first star when RCA would first transmit his image from the Empire State Building in 1928 and then again in 1939 for the first commercial television broadcast. This was a lead up to the formal unveiling of Televisions at New York World’s Fair.

Once you leave Felix on his turntable, the museum has you move to various sections that explain how Televisions were formed, how they worked, what they looked like in different era’s plus various other tidbits. Here are some images of those displays.

Museum of Television 1930s tv

1930’s-1940’s Televisions (just a sample of what they have).

Museum of Television image 4

Museum of Television 1930s 1940s tv

1950’s-1960’s. LOVE these TV’s. They are just so cool!

Museum of Television 1950s

It’s all about the details.

Museum of Television 1950s 1960s TV

Sample from the the space age TV’s.

Space Age vintage televison at Musuem of Television

There were so many stunning Television’s but I think the one that stood out the most for me was this 1950’s West Germany, Komet. You would need nothing else in your room but this work of art (also housing a turntable).

vintage televison at Museum of Television

Beyond showing the timeline of Television sets, the museum also plays hosts to 3 special sets.

Up first this lucite beauty from RCA shown at the 1939 World’s Fair in NYC (The ONLY one in the world).

Vintage Television Lucite world fair television

The 1939 World’s Fair was the first time many people had their first look at television and the centerpiece was the Phantom TRK-12 shown above, whose cabinet was made of transparent Lucite. Having the transparent casing convinced skeptics that TV really worked and wasn’t all smoke-and-mirrors. The TRK-12 had the CRT facing straight up, and the screen was watched by looking into a mirror (Source).

1939 RCA Transparent TRK-12 Television at the World's Fair

The next special TV is Elvis Presley’s early 1970’s set that was situated on the counter in his kitchen (which was very uncommon at that time).

Elvis Presley 1970s Television

It was a tiny TV as you can see below.

Elvis Presley kitchen 1970s

First Elvis, now a 1957 Magnavox Television from Marilyn Monroe (seen to the left in the tableau below).

marilyn monroe 1950s television

The last part of my visit had a stop at the archives portion of the museum and it was jam-packed with advertising, books, photos and so much more. It was very cool to see (I adore anything archive related) and a great resource for anyone in the field or in need of historic information.

Museum of Television Toronto Archives 1

Museum of Television Toronto Archives 1

And that was my wonderful visit. Thank you to the fantastic staff for answering my questions and allowing me into the archives portion of the museum. I enjoyed myself immensely and I look forward to my next visit.

NOW it’s your turn! If you live in Toronto or are visiting Toronto soon (or someday), then make sure you make time to stop by the Museum you won’t regret it!

  • Location: 64 Jefferson Ave, Toronto, Ontario Canada
  • MZTV is open Tuesday-Friday: 2pm-5pm
    Saturday-Monday: Closed
  • Pricing:
    • Adults $10
    • Seniors and Students $5
    • Groups 10+ $5/person
    • CARP Members FREE
    • Children 12 and under FREE

Question Time: What style of vintage Television do you like? Share in the comments below.

Liz

The Vintage Side of Zoomer Radio + Boo Bash 2017

I’m a big fan of vintage music, especially music from the 1920’s-1960s. Swing, Blues, Jazz, Rock n Roll and I have quite a big collection of music in my possession (well I think it’s big). However even though I have all this music at my finger tips, sometimes I want to change-up and have someone else supply the soundtrack from my day and this is where radio stations will give me the fix I’m looking for.

Insert ZOOMER RADIO in Toronto. It’s a station that plays timeless classics (music from the 1920’s and up, in various styles) and also has several vintage radio programs that are right up my alley and I know my readers as well.

So I’m excited to announce that I will be working with them on a more frequent basis to bring awesome vintage content (20’s-60’s) for my readers and for their listeners as well. Stay Tuned (hehehe Radio Pun)!

zoomer radio logo

Now what exactly does Zoomer have that the Vintage Inn readers might like? Well that is easy. Lots of great vintage programs! Check out my suggestions below and then mark you calendars to listen to them live or online (for anyone outside of Toronto).

Toronto's Zoomer Radio Vintage shows

Big Band Sunday Night with George Jonescu (Sundays 7-11pm) –Vintage Inn Fav!

For the Blues Music Fans-Midnight Blue with Ziggy (Monday-Thursday 12am-1am): Songs from the 1930s and 40s that were never played on radio, and more recent songs teetering ‘on the edge’.

Robbie Remembers 60s, 70s & 80’s (Monday-Friday 6pm-10pm): In Toronto, Robbie Lane and The Disciples were one of the city’s top bands, and now, decades later, Robbie Lane continues the rock’n’roll tradition – he plays the clubs on weekends, and hosts two hours of great oldies you just won’t hear anywhere else – ‘The Sixties at Six’, remembering the British Invasion, surfing, folk-rock and Motown, and then ‘The Seventies at Seven’ with the great singer-songwriters like James Taylor, Carole King, and the pop stars like ABBA, Three Dog Night, Elton John and Fleetwood Mac. Robbie Lane will also be talking about the top Eighties hits at Eight.

Saturday Night Bandstand (Saturday’s 7pm-1am): Neil Hedley helps you dust off your dancing shoes with everything from rock and roll to disco, including your requests!

Theatre of the Mind (Monday-Friday 10pm-11pm): Frank Proctor selects, and then describes some of the greatest shows from the golden age of radio — the 1930s and 1940s — like The Shadow and Fibber McGee & Molly. A half-hour of drama, mystery or suspense is followed by a half-hour of comedy — Vintage Inn Fav!

Vintage Favourites (Every Sunday 2-4pm): Gene Stevens hosts this weekly adventure into truly vintage music –from 1950s and 60s… and way back to the 20s, 30s, and 40s as well. Vintage Favourites is AM740’s weekly adventure into the music of the past … radio veteran, music historian and story-teller, Gene Stevens puts the spotlight on a new theme. –Vintage Inn Fav!

The British Invasion (Saturdays 6-7pm): The British Invasion will proudly feature the terrific acts that came out of England with Cliff Richard in the late 50s, through the glory days of Merseybeat and Beatlemania, with countless groups and singers from The Pacemakers, Animals, Searchers and Herman’s Hermits, to the Stones, Kinks, Small Faces, DC5, and Moody Blues – and of course, Dusty Springfield, Tom Jones, Donovan, Pet Clark, Manfred Mann, Peter & Gordon..and so many others.

Consignment Heroes (Sundays 1pm-2pm): Consignment Heroes is hosted by Paul Kenny, his son Bogart Kenny and Zoomer’s Ben Mercer. Listen and call in for advice on: appraisals, collections, how to store stuff, dispose of or sell stuff in the best way.

Happy Listening Friends!

P.S. Scroll down to see the Halloween party we attended at the station.

Vintage Radio, child listening to it

Beyond their radio programs they also host events, like their most recent ‘Live To Air Boo Bash featuring the Dreamboats‘ that myself and a few friends attended. The night was so much fun! We danced to awesome 50’s music from The Dreamboats (go and see them if they are in a town near you), ate yummy foods and met so many wonderful employees and listeners of the radio station. I enjoyed every minute. There was even a costume contest for $250 and my friend Jacquie the creator of the Toronto Vintage Society was a finalist. In the end the most beautiful woman who was in her 80’s won the grand prize and it was well deserved (seen below).

Zoomer Radio Boo Bash Costume Contest
Source: Zoomer

Below are some of the photos I took and then please visit the link HERE to check out Zoomer’s images.

And the prize for most non creative costume goes to….ME! I went as my “own character” from GREASE called “leggs”. I just ran out of time to bring something new to the table this year.

The Vintage Inn Blog Grease Costume Halloween 2017

Yours Truly & Toronto Vintage Society’s, Jacquie (finalist in the best costume contest).

The Vintage Inn Blog & Toronto Vintage Society Halloween 2017

My awesome friends.

Zoomer Radio Boo Bash 2017

The Dreamboats in action!

The Dreamboats 1950s 1960s Band

Photo with the band and friends in between their sets.

The Dreamboats at Zoomer Radio Boo Bash 2017

And that is a wrap. I’m hope you enjoyed learning all about this awesome radio station and when you get a chance, check out some of their vintage programs I mentioned above.

Question Time: Do you have any vintage radio stations you like to listen to? If so share in the comments below.

Liz

 

Step Back in Time with The Canadian National Exhibition

I have written about the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) a couple times on my blog, because it truly is one of my most favorite summer events. The CNE is an annual event at the end of summer held in Toronto and with approximately 1.3 million visitors each year, the exhibition is Canada’s largest annual fair and the seventh largest in North America.

CNE Souvenir Catalogue & Programme Cover, 1955
Source: CNE Heritage

Online, the CNE Heritage has an amazing collection of images from its archives and for today’s post I wanted to pull some of my favorites from their collection (1920’s-50’s) and share them with you. Lets begin!

Simpson’s Ad In CNE Programme, 1928

Simpson's Ad In CNE Programme, 1928
Source: CNE Heritage

CNE Programme Cover, 1931

CNE Programme Cover, 1931
Source: CNE Heritage

Suede Shoe Ad In 1935 CNE Fashion Show Programme. In my personal collection I have this exact show program.

Suede Shoe Ad In 1935 CNE Fashion Show Programme
Source: CNE Heritage

CNE Bandshell & Manufacturers Building, 1948.

CNE Bandshell & Manufacturers Building, 1948.
Source: CNE Heritage

CNE Guests, 1927.

CNE guests vintage photo 1927
Source: CNE Heritage

This poster celebrates the opening of the new Ontario Government Building (now Liberty Grand) in 1926.

1926 Vintage CNE Poster
Source: CNE Heritage

Hollywood Chimp Show, 1937.

Hollywood Chimp Show, 1937
Source: CNE Heritage

1939 CNE Poster-Transportation and Communications Year.

1939 CNE Poster
Source: CNE Hertiage

Auto Show, 1936.

CNE Auto Show 1936 Image of Vintage Cars
Source: CNE Heritage

RCA Victor Display, 1940.

RCA Victor Display 1940s vintage image at CNE
Source: CNE Heritage

Safety Quiz, 1948. I think the first part of the quiz should be, “You should always keep your eyes on the road, Yes or No?”

Vintage image of 4 young people in a car in 1948
Source: CNE Heritage

Canadian Women at War!

1940s Canadian Women at War CNE Program
Source: CNE Heritage

Fashion of the Day on display in 1940.

1940s Young Womens fashion
Source: CNE Heritage

Miss Toronto Contest, 1951. Read all about Miss Toronto HERE.

Miss Toronto contest 1951 vintage image at CNE
Source: CNE Heritage

Swimming Sensation, Marilyn Bell in 1954 with Roy Rogers & Dale Evans.

From CNE Heritage:

In 1954, a 16-year old high school student named Marilyn Bell became a sensation when she became the first person to swim across Lake Ontario.

She became an instant celebrity, beloved by fans across Canada.

It all began on September 8th, when three swimmers began a 32 kilometre race from Youngstown, New York to the CNE grounds.

American marathon swimmer Florence Chadwick was the favourite, followed by Canadian swimmer Winnie Roach Leuszler; Marilyn was the underdog.

It became clear early in the race that she was a contender, remaining in the water after her competitors dropped out.

Newspapers covered her every stroke through the cold waves of Lake Ontario. After 21 hours, Marilyn made it ashore to the acclaim of the nation.

The following year, Marilyn was the star of the CNE’s “Canadiana” Grandstand show, sharing the stage with American television host Ed Sullivan.

The highlight of the show was Marilyn diving into a specially designed tank of water on stage.

Marilyn Bell, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans
Source: CNE Heritage

Pez Anyone? 1954.

vintage image of a young girl eating pez at the CNE 1954
Source: CNE Heritage

Defying Gravity in the Rotor! 1953.

Vintage Ride 1953 at CNE
Source: CNE Heritage

Jimmy Durante and Friends, 1951.

Jimmy Durante & Friends, 1951 vintage image at CNE
Source: CNE Heritage

Derby Race, 1950.

CNE vintage derby race ride 1950 vintage image
Source: CNE Heritage

Even TV’s Lassie made an appearance in 1955.

TV's Lassie With CNE Visitors, 1955
Source: CNE Heritage

Kitchen World with Marie Fraser, 1955.

Kitchen World With Marie Fraser, 1955 vintage image at CNE
Source: CNE Heritage

 

And that is it for today’s post friends, I really hope you enjoyed this walk down some of the CNE’s past.

Question Time: Do you have a big fair or exhibition that you like to attend every year? Share in the comments below!

Liz

Toronto Vintage Society-The Last Dance

toronto-vintage-society-logo

The Toronto Vintage Society this Saturday will be throwing our last party ever for the vintage community in Toronto. But don’t worry we aren’t going anywhere, we will still be online telling you all the fun vintage events to attend and of course we will be at many of them ourselves! We just felt it was time to pass the vintage party gauntlet onto the community that has grown in leaps and bounds since we started our events 3 years ago. So that said, I wanted to take a walk down memory lane to our past parties as we prepare to have our ”Last Dance”.

Warning..lots of awesome fun photos ahead!

First Up..a big THANK YOU to Jacquie the creator of TVS and the main brain (and worker) behind every one of our events. Jacquie’s dream was to find more friends to attend cool vintage events with and she accomplished that and much more.

Toronto Vintage society

The Parties & Events:

Mad Men Viewing Party 2013- The First Official TVS Event

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men 2013 Party

Tiki-Tacky Retro Patio Party-TVS First Tiki party in Toronto in 2013

toronto vintage society tiki party 2013

The best dressed family that year.

Toronto Vintage society Tiki Party 2013

Mad Men Season Premier Party 2014

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men Party

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men Party

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men Party

The Pinup Picnic 2014

toronto vintage society pinup picnic

toronto vintage society pinup picnic

toronto vintage society pinup picnic

Tiki Party 2014

tage-society-tiki-party-2014

Kitschmas Cabin -2014

Toronto Vintage Society Kitschmas Cabin 2014

Toronto Vintage Society Kitschmas Cabin 2014

Toronto Vintage Society Kitschmas Cabin 2014

Man Men last Season Party – 2015

mad-men-finale-party-toronto-vintage-society

mad-men-finale-party-toronto-vintage-society

mad-men-finale-party-toronto-vintage-society

Mad Men Finale Party-2015

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men Finale Party 2015

Toronto Vintage Society Mad Men Finale Party 2015

Pinup Picnic 2015

toronto-vintage-society-pinup-picnic-1024x512

TVS Tiki Party 2015

toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-2015
Source: Snapd

toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-2015

toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-2015

toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-2015

White Kitschmas- December 2015

toronto-vintage-society-kitschmas-party-2015

the-millwinder-at-white-kitschmas-2015-toronto-vintage-society

toronto-vintage-society-kitschmas-party-2015

toronto-vintage-society-kitschmas-party-2015

ronto-vintage-society-kitschmas-party-2015
Photo credit – Derk Derk Van Derk

TVS Tiki Party 2016

toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-photo-by-lux-media-group
Source: Lux Media
toronto-vintage-society-tiki-party-photo-by-lux-media-group
Source: Lux Media
Toronto Vintage society tiki party 2016
Source: Kyle Burton

And now we come to our final party this Saturday. Obviously no pictures but as per usual follow me on Instagram to see the party in action.

Toronto Vintage Society Kitschmas Time Kapsule 2016

Final Words. Being part of the TVS events team has been so much fun and I will be honest, I will be sad to hangup my MC microphone for the last time this Saturday. BUT as I said before this is not the end of TVS only the beginning and I’m very excited to see what the future brings.

Final Final Words..To all our fans and supporters over the years..THANK YOU!

Liz

 

‘Canada Dry’-Toronto’s Original Beverage and the Champagne of Ginger Ales

While scouring the internet for all things vintage and interesting I stumbled upon a cool article about the history of everyone’s favorite Ginger drink..”Canada Dry’s Ginger Ale“. Well maybe it’s not everyone’s favorite but it sure is a fav of mine and also TRULY Canadian (not just using the name here). And since I love sharing cool Toronto history with you, today’s post will be highlights from the beginnings of this drink and then showcasing a bunch of my favorite vintage ads I found from the 30s, 40s and 50s.

1947 Canada Dry Ginger Ale Vintage Ad
Source: Ebay

The beginning (the Highlights):

Vintage Canada Dry ginger Ale label Toronto, Canada
Source: BlogTO
  • In 1890, Canadian pharmacist and chemist John J. McLaughlin of Enniskillen, Ontario opened a carbonated water plant in Toronto after returning from Brooklyn where he is was working in the pharmacy business.
  • McLaughlin set himself the goal of developing a pale, dry ginger ale, ostensibly as a non-alcoholic rival for champagne but more likely in the hope of surpassing the popular ginger ales then on the market (Source).
  • In 1904, McLaughlin created “Canada Dry Pale Ginger Ale”, which was a refined version of their long produced “McLaughlin’s Belfast Style Ginger Ale”.
  • “It has a snap and a tingle; a smart spry taste,” early ads claimed. It was known as “the champagne of ginger ales” for its light taste and was marketed with a beaver icon and a map of Canada (Source).
  • Rapid growth and popularity quickly followed after it’s launch, with plants opening up in other areas of Canada and the trade name registered in 1907.
  • The sweet drink was even appointed to the Royal Household of the Governor General of Canada where the label featuring a beaver atop a map of Canada was replaced with the present Crown and shield.
  • Canada Dry stayed in the family business till the 1920s, where growing popularity in the United States had the family expand into New York City (Note: McLaughlin died suddenly in 1914).
  • It was sold in 1923 to P. D. Saylor and Associates, who renamed it Canada Dry Ginger Ale, Inc. and forever removing the ties to Toronto.
  • It has been in United States hands ever since (being purchased by several companies over the years).
  • Side Note: His brother, Samuel McLaughlin, was busily growing their father’s business into what would eventually become General Motors of Canada during the beginnings of Canada Dry.
Canada_Dry_Pale_Ginger_Ale_Toronto_Star_ad_1916
Source: Wikipedia

For a full detailed history lesson on Canada Dry make sure you check out the ‘BlogTO’ article HERE.

The vintage ads:

1937-So many “Remedies” from one drink.

Canada Dry Ginger Alex 1937 Vintage Ad
Source: Period Paper

1930s Ad- Kids love it, it’s made thru a scientific process, it’s great at parties and served at fancy exotic hotels. Canada Dry is truly the Best!

1930s vintage Canada Dry ginger ale ad
Source: Flickr

1935 Ad- “Against the brilliant social background, it’s Canada Dry”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wc8dSkyAWkQ
Source: Ebay

“Cool Off with Canada Dry” (cute swimsuit!)

1940s Vintage Canada Dry Ginger Ale Ad
Source: O Canada blog

1940s- Canada Dry says “Keep up the good work”

1940s Vintage Canada Dry Ginger Ale Ad
Source: Pinterest

Keeps his Ginger Up? I do marketing for a career and even I don’t know what that means.

1940s Canada Dry Christmas Ginger Ale Ad
Source: Vintage Ads

1950s Ad-The Ginger-Upper 🙂 This is better then the above use of the words ‘Ginger’ and ‘Up’.

1954 Canada Dry Ginger Ale Ad
Source: Etsy

Esther Williams for Canada Dry, 1956. Do you think those are her kids (according to the ad) or “fake kids”?

vintage Canada Dry ad with Esther Willias

Another endorsement ad- Mary Hartline, 1951.

1951 Canada Dry Ginger Ale Vintage Ad Mary Hartline
Source: flickr

And for our last image lets leave you with Annie Oakley and some great BBQ recipes featuring the “Ginger-Upper”.

Original vintage magazine ad for Canada Dry Ginger Ale featuring Annie Oakley
Source: Attic Paper

canada-dry logo

 

So friends am I alone on the love of Canada Dry Ginger Ale or do you too enjoy the “Champagne of Ginger Ales”?

Liz 🙂

 

 

 

Images Of Toronto Christmas Seasons Gone By

We are deep into the Holiday season right now and now that I’m not stuck in bed with the cold, I can finish my shopping and get some presents wrapped (thank goodness, I was so far behind).

For today’s post I wanted to share with my readers images of  what the Christmas season looked like in Toronto in years gone by, particularly 1960s and older.

vintage Christmas TTC Ad
Vintage TTC Ad. Source: Blog TO

The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) Christmas Fleet 1956 outside of the CNE Princess Gates.

T.T.C. Christmas Fleet, G.M.C. TDH 4512 buses and 1 Can-Car trolley coach. Photo taken at C.N.E. Prince's Gates, [Toronto, Ont.] Dec. 16, 1956.
Source: Archives Canada
The hustle and bustle of the season at shopping malls is not just a modern-day issue. This image from downtown Toronto in 1935 shows you the traffic jams that have been going on for days leading up to Christmas.

Looking south on Yonge St, opposite centre line of Trinity Square; like this from Queen St, to Dundas, every afternoon for days before Christmas; 2 p.m., Tuesday, December 24, 1935, (Traffic Study Department)
Source: Toronto Archives

1920s St. Lawrence Market building all decked out for Christmas.

North york christmas Market
Source: Toronto Archives

City Hall Christmas Tree in the 1950s (now called ‘Old City Hall’). Residents of Toronto will notice the ‘Eaton store’ in the background. This is now a mall called ‘Toronto Eaton Center’ but no longer holds an Eaton store.

Old City Hall Christmas Tree 1950s
Source: Toronto Archives

Christmas light tour circa 1950s.

Toronto christmas lights tour vintage
Source: Toronto Archives

Toronto annual Santa Claus Parade (see Blog post HERE).

toronto-santa-claus-parade-1956-pic-3
Source: Toronto Archives

December 23rd, 1930-Childrens Christmas Party via the Lions Club. Can someone explain why there are kids dressed as clowns in the crowd?

Lions' Club Xmas [Christmas] party scene, KE.
Source: Toronto Archives
Snapshot of what was under the Christmas Tree at Miss Marjorie Lang’s home in 1930s Toronto.

Miss Marjorie Laing, Xmas [Christmas] gifts.
Source: Toronto Archives
Christmas windows at one of the big department stores in Toronto (either Simpsons, or Eatons. I believe Simpsons).

vintage eatons simpsons christmas windows

Christmas Carols for everyone! Wanting to make sure that everyone remembered their carols, the Toronto Telegram inserted the below leaflet into their paper for their readers to have (circa 1960s).

christmas carols vintage paper insert Toronto
Source: Etsy-UNSC2

Santa’s helpers are everywhere, like on airplanes (Trans Canada Airlines to be exact) taking the first consignment airmail from Toronto to Winnipeg in 1939.

First consignment of airmail flown by Trans-Canada Air Lines from Toronto to Winnipeg.
Source: Archives Canada

Family in Toronto unwrapping their Christmas presents in 1953 (notice the vintage Archies and Krazy Kat comics? ohhh want!).

Toronto Christmas 1953
Source: Flickr-pjs_deceased

And there you have a snapshot into what Toronto looked like during Christmas of times gone by. I hope you enjoyed taking a peek into another view of the city I live in.

Liz 🙂

 

 

 

Vintage Swimsuits-The Roundup

August 29th, Toronto Vintage Society is hosting our annual Tiki Party at the Cadillac Lounge in Toronto-Tiki Lani Lanai.

Toronto Vintage society's Tiki Party-August 29th

Every year keeps getting bigger with year # 3 being our biggest! Woo hoo! One of the cool activities we do at our Tiki party is the “Vintage Swim Suit Competition“. Last year we had a wonderful turnout of fantastic suits and I’m really excited to see what this years attendees will bring to table. I’m sure they will be amazing!

In preparation for August 29th, I have rounded up some of my favorite vintage swimsuits from the internet to inspire, purchase or just admire. Enjoy!

(P.S. These are also great suits for VIVA as well).

1930s ladies in Swimsuit
Marie McKenna and Gladys Cooling at Southport, 1938. Source: Flickr-State Library of Queensland

Playsuits that turn into swimsuits are fantastic for summer parties, because you only have to worry about one outfit for the whole day. This 1940s beauty on sale on Etsy right now is the perfect example.

1940s Swimsuit - 40s Playsuit
Source: Etsy-jumblelaya

Another Playsuit/Swimsuit from the 1950s. Who does not love Gingham?!

1950s playsuit
Source: Etsy-traven7

I love details like lovely scalping on the bust of a suit.

(P.S. this suit is from a Canadian seller: “Trunk of Dresses” for any Toronto ladies interested).

1940s swimsuit
1940s swimsuit. Source-Etsy: TrunkofDresses

This next suit is stunning and so very 1930s. This suit is luxuriously sleek white and silver striped Lastex stretch satin with skinny black pinstriping. Wow! You would turn heads everywhere you went, that is for sure.

1930s swimsuit
Source: Etsy-Fabgabs

Ohhhhh I wish this next darling of Marina Del Mar swimsuit would fit me, it’s just so beautiful. At last it won’t so I will have to wish for it to go to a good home instead. Bummer.

1950s vintage swimsuit
Source: Etsy-jumblelaya

1950s Swimsuits with pleated skirts is the ultimate in style, especially when it looks like it would be good to from the pool to the tennis court. Fantastic!

This lovely is also being sold in Canada on Etsy so you can still scoop it up just in time for the party.

1950s vintage swimsuit with pleated skirt
Source: Etsy-SoftServeVintage

This number would be perfect for VIVA with its patriotic red/white/blue theme but honestly it could be worn anytime because CUTE is perfect anytime.

(Note: Also a Canadian Etsy Seller)

1950s vintage swimsuit
Source: Etsy-OrchidRoomVintage

Sometimes all a swimsuit needs is a few fantastic details, like this Ivory cream piping scalloped wave pattern with buttons on the below 1950s swimsuit. So pretty.

1950s vintage swimsuit
Source: Etsy-FoxyBritVintage

This 1950s Jantzen Rhinestone beauty is a bit pricey but it’s too stunning to leave on Etsy PLUS it has its vintage ad to match!

1950s Jantzen Swimsuit
Source: Etsy-LakesideVintageColl

1950s Jantzen swinwear ad

 

Lets not forget the men! Can we all take a moment to revel on how PERFECT these 1950s vintage swim trunks are for the Tiki party? Or for VIVA? WOW!

1950s men vintage swimtrunks
Source: Etsy-MintageClothingCo

Here is another perfect Tiki 1950s Vintage Swimsuit for the guys.

1950s men vintage swim trunks
Source: Etsy-LaurelCanyon1969

 

And there is the roundup.  Still looking for a suit? Etsy and Ebay are always good places to go (as seen above) as well as vintage shops in your hood. Live in Toronto? We have lots of places that might have a suit or 2 (check out our directory on the TVS website) but if vintage is not your thing for swimsuits then please check out our Tiki Party sponsor “Doll Factory by Damzels“.

Now Question Time: Do you own a vintage swimsuit? Or is one on your bucket list?

Liz 🙂

 

The Stylish Toronto of the 1940s

While looking thru Flickr the other day for some inspiration I stumbled upon this absolutely wonderful photo of 8 of the most stylish men and women 1940s Toronto has ever seen! Aren’t they just fantastic?? My favorite is…all of them 🙂

1940s people in Toronto
Source: Flickr-Mary-Doug Wright

The post inspired me to gather up other images of stylish folks in Toronto during the same time period and put them together into one giant fashionable post.

Now lets see who was in “Vogue” shall we?

1940s Toronto storefront window Vogue
Toronto Store Front Window 1940s. Source: Flickr-Jessica

The below image is of Betty Willis (vocals) and Frank Wright (vibraphone), two early stars of the Toronto jazz scene in the 1940s and ’50s.

I’m not 100% sure what is on her dress, but I do know I like it on her (great hair as well). Great examples of 1940s suits as well, such well dressed men.

1940s Jazz musicians of Toronto
Source: National Post

Of course you must have a Beauty Pageant or 2 to showcase more great style (see a past post on Miss Toronto). In this case, great swimsuit style.

Miss Toronto 1946
Miss Toronto 1946

Even if you had to do your part for the war effort, true style still shone thru (even if it was how you did your hair or the colours of your nails). Here is the “Miss War Worker Beauty Pageant of 1942”, showing just that.

Miss_War_Worker_Beauty_Contest_1942

We cannot leave out Toronto’s very own Rosie the Riveter-“Veronica Foster the Bren Gun Girl”. You can read all about Veronica HERE. This is her “after work is done look”.

Veronica Foster-Bren Gun Girl
Source: Library and Archives Canada

Remember Miss Toronto 1946 in the swimsuit above? Well here she is again, modelling our Transit system very stylish uniforms for women in 1946. Pretty smart, right?

Miss Toronto 1946 TTC Uniform
Source: Blog TO

More ladies in the uniforms of the TTC (Toronto Transit Commission).

1940s TTC women workers
Source: Blog TO

Off to school? With storefront windows like this one in Toronto in 1942 you were guaranteed to not miss the hottest looks on campus. How do I make the look on the right mine?

1940s fashion for women in Toronto
Source: archives.gov.on.ca

Have children and think you don’t have time to be stylish? Not a problem for the lovely lady Mrs. Jack Wright and her two sons Ralph Wright and David Wright in 1943 doing her shopping in Toronto in a stunner of a dress (source). Aren’t her kids just adorable??

1940s Toronto
Source: Flickr: BiblioArchives

Think being stylish is only reserved for adults? Pish Posh, look at these 2 well dressed boys doing some reading of some very important books for their generation.

Two young boys, seated with books, in the children's department of a Toronto public library, Toronto, Ontario
Source: Flickr-BiblioArchives

This last image is of a young couple with a lovely lady who was a member of the Canadian Women’s Army Corps in 1944. Can we take a moment to admire the 2 doves on the one woman’s dress? Fantastic!

A member of the Canadian Women’s Army Corps feeds a treat to a cat as a couple seated on nearby loveseat watch /
Source: Flickr-BiblioArchives

And there it is, Stylish Toronto of the 1940s. Did you have a favorite photo from this collection? Or maybe you have your own photos of stylish folks from your town or even a favorite image. Do share!

Liz 🙂

 

 

 

 

Mary Pickford-“Canada’s Sweetheart” of the Silver Screen

Mary Pickford was “America’s Sweetheart” in the early days of the Silver screen but did you know that she was Canadian and born in my adopted home of Toronto? So technically she would be “Canada’s Sweetheart”.

Mary Pickford in “Coquette” 1929
Source: Pretty Clever Films

I also recently discovered thanks to a friend’s post on Instagram that there is a statue and plaque in her honor in downtown Toronto. How exciting!! Here it is:

Mary Pickford Toronto Plaque and Statue
Source: Toronto Plaques

Location in Toronto (if you ever visit): Northeast corner of University Avenue and Elm Street

Mary Pickford Toronto Plaque and Statue
Source: Toronto Plaques

Miss Pickford herself 🙂

Mary Pickford Toronto Plaque and Statue
Source: Toronto Plaques

 About Mary-Highlights of the Early Day’s:

Note: for a more detailed description please visit her official website HERE

Mary Pickford as a Child in 1902
Mary as a child in 1902. Source: Mary Pickford org

As you read above, Mary was actually born as Glady’s Marie Smith on April 8, 1892 in Toronto, Canada to John and Charlotte Smith. Her father died when she was young and her mother after being encouraged by a boarder of their home (who was a stage manager for a theatre company), put Glady’s (age 5) and her sister onto the stage.

Soon though the producers only wanted Glady’s and she quickly found herself traveling alone throughout Canada and to New York for work.

By the time Gladys was twelve,” writes Pickford biographer Booton Herndon, “she knew how to travel better than most adults, certainly better than most women of 1905. She knew how to get around in a town she had never seen before, how to get a room at a reasonable price, how to eat cheaply, when to walk rather that spend a nickel for a streetcar.” She was not above sleeping in an overstuffed chair and paying “rent” by doing the shopping and cleaning, saving every penny she could to proudly send home to her mother at the end of each week (Source).

The_Warrens_of_Virginia_(1907-1908_play)
Source: Wikipedia

Glady’s Becomes Mary:

In 1907 Mary was cast in the Broadway Play “The Warrens of Virginia“, written by William de Mille and co-starring his younger brother Cecil (image above) where her name was then to be changed forever.

Glady’s name was not “Marquee Worthy” so she adopted the family name Pickford from her maternal grandfather’s name, John Pickford Hennessey and took her middle name, Marie, to become Mary (source). A stars name is born!

Pickford's star on Canada's Walk of Fame in Toronto, Ontario
Mary Pickford Star on the Canadian Walk of Fame – Source: Wikipedia

Silver Screen Career:

Mary Pickford in 1916
Source: Wikipedia

Mary made the move to the movies in 1909 where between the years of 1909 and 1912 she appeared in over 150 short films working with 3 different Movie Companies.

By 1916 Pickford’s popularity had climbed to the point that she was awarded a contract that made her a partner with Zukor (Zukor’s Famous Players Film Company, a studio which eventually became part of Paramount Pictures and who she had been working with since 1913) and they even allowed her to produce her own films (Source).

From 1913-to 1933 she appeared in around 80 more films (give or take a movie or 2 I missed).

In 1919 Pickford teamed with D.W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, and Douglas Fairbanks to create United Artists, an organization designed to distribute their own films.

 D.W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, and Douglas Fairbanks to create United Artists
Source: Wikipedia

Her First Talkie was the movie “Coquette” in 1929 where she ended winning the Academy award for Best Actress for her performance and it launched Pickford as a competent talkie star.

Mary Pickford first talkie Coquette
Source: Wikipedia

Her last movie was in 1933 in the Movie “Secrets”, however, she remained active as a producer for several years afterwards (Source).

Selection of her Movie Roles:

Mary Pickford in the Movies

Interesting Facts:

1. Mary was married 3 times:

  • Owen Moore (1911-1920)
Mary Pickford and Owen
Source: Mary Pickford Org
  • Douglas Fairbanks (1920-1936)

Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford

  • Buddy Rogers (1937-1979)
Buddy and Mary pickford 1937
Source: Mary Pickford Org

 

2. The Public preferred to see Pickford as a young girl; as a result, she was often pressured to choose childlike parts to appeal to audiences (Source).

I’m sick of Cinderella parts, of wearing rags and tatters. I want to wear smart clothes and play the lover -Mary Pickford-

3. Pickford was a founding member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Source).

4. She had intended to have all of her films destroyed after her death, fearing that no one would care about them. She was convinced not to do this (Source).

5. Became a United States citizen on her marriage to Douglas Fairbanks, but later reclaimed her Canadian citizenship and died an American and Canadian citizen (Source).

6. The house in which she lived in Hollywood for most of her life was nicknamed “Pickfair” (Source).

Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks home pickfair
Source: Playle

 

Mary died in 1979 at the age of 87.

mary pickford

“The best known woman who has ever lived, the woman who was known to more people and loved by more people than any other woman that has been in all history.”

Adela Rogers St. Johns, 1981
And there is a little bit of Canadian Movie Star History for all of you. I hope you enjoyed and learned a little more about OUR Canadian Sweetheart.
Liz 🙂

Toronto Has A Vintage Soda Shop-Welcome “Bean and Baker Malt Shop”!

This past Tuesday I was invited to attend a special Blogging event at the soon to be opened “Bean and Baker Malt Shop“, to get a sneak peek of all the goodies the public is going get to enjoy on June 2nd!

(Edit: Bean and Baker is NOW OPEN)

I attended with a fellow friend and blogger Irene from Petite Plus Meow.

Vintage malt shop toronto
Out front of Bean and Baker
Petite Plus Meow at Bean and Baker Malt Shop
How adorable is Irene??

Leading up to this event, I did a little fun post on Vintage Malt Shop Images, which you can find HERE.

Now lets talk about my Bean and Baker Malt Shop Experience…..

Official Press Release:

Husband and wife team, Liezel and Brennan Anderson, are proud to announce the opening of Bean and Baker Malt Shop ­Toronto’s revival of the soda fountain malt shop in Bickford Park. Bean and Baker Malt Shop, located at 326 Harbord Street, Toronto, ON., offers classic sodas, ice cream, coffee, and handcrafted desserts and pastries. They provide premium food and drinks with top­notch quality ingredients while showcasing the retro ­era malt shop experience.

The 16 ­seat establishment is clean and decorated in a retro 1950’s style. The menu will feature premium coffee, savoury pies, quiche, pies, cakes, cookies, ice cream, floats and milkshakes. Specializing in handmade sodas made by authentic Soda Jerks, with flavours ranging from Root ‘n Cola, Gramp’s Ginger, Real Orange, and Hibiscus. It features an open ­concept kitchen and Soda Jerks behind the counter complete with a bow­tie and a smile. Customers can sit inside or grab ­and ­go. Hours of operation are Tuesday-Saturday:10 am ­ 8 pm, Sunday: 11 am ­ 6 pm, Monday: Closed.

Owner, Liezel Anderson describes her vision for the malt shop, “Our goal is to provide Toronto with an experience that stands out and is unique to every customer. We want to bring the malt shop experience back! We want to give people a unique escape from everyday life. People have the right to know what they’re eating and drinking so we use premium quality ingredients. We aspire to be a neighbourhood hub where many generations of families can enjoy good food and each other’s company.”

Bean and Baker Malt Shop Owners
Liz with the owners: Liezel & Brennan and fellow blogger Irene from Petite Plus Meow

When we arrived we were greeted by Brennan and his fantastic Soda Jerks offering water for us to drink. Why water? Well as we drank the fresh drink we were told that all their products start with the freshest and most filtered water around. Nothing but the best for their customers, starting with us (I like this place already).

As we drank the water we got to take a walk around and see what they have done decor wise. Check it out!

Inside of Bean and Baker Malt Shop
One of the counters inside the shop
Decor of Bean and Baker Malt Shop
Some of the Inside Decor
Decor of Bean and Baker Malt Shop
The Yummy Menu
Bean and Baker Malt Shop toronto
Back of the Shop

Okay time to eat and boy did we get treated with so many wonderful goodies.

First up..Handmade Sodas made by those authentic Soda Jerks.

Handmade Sodas from Bean and Malt
The Friendly Soda Jerk Making my Vanilla Cream Soda (with real Vanilla Beans). YUM!

Then we got to enjoy some of their savouries options:

  • Wisey’s Mini
  • Mini Beef and Cheese Pie
  • Veggie Quiche
Savory foods at Bean and Baker Malt Shop
All so yummy I could not decide what was my fav

And now it was SWEET TIME!! The yummy collection of pure homemade desserts we sampled was:

  • Warm Cherry Pie Pocket
  • Dark Chocolate Eclair
  • Old School PB ad J Pie (MY FAV!)
Sweet Treats at Bean and Baker Malt Shop
Once again, really good.

Now you cannot possible go to a Malt Shop and not have a Malt Milkshake. Our shakes for today were “Burnt Marshmallow (using Ed’s ice cream). I’m not sure if my Soda Jerk read my mind but the only Ice Cream I eat at Ed’s is the Burnt Marshmallow. Just ask my husband, there are 20 other flavours and I don’t even care or even look. SHOW ME THE MARSHMALLOW!! So when I was presented this shake I already KNEW that I was going to love it..and I did.

Burnt Marshmallow malt shake from Bean and Baker Malt Shop
Mini version for today. Yours will come in the traditional way if you eat in.

Time to move aside all that I have eaten so far to make room for the next goodie..Ice Cream Sundaes made anyway we liked and with any kind of Ed’s Ice Cream.

Ice Cream Sundaes from Bean and Baker Malt Shop
Flavour..Burnt Marshmallow..of course.

By now your probably thinking..this must be the end right? WRONG? We were then treated to the making of their Ice Cream Sodas (Hibiscus flavored for the example).

I actually did not try it because I had no more room but from the image you can see below and from all that I mentioned above I know it is going to be amazing when I do try it.

Making of an Ice Cream Sundae Bean and Baker Malt Shop
Best part of an Ice Cream Soda..when it fizzes up!

Last treat before we slowly moved to the door (and decided to walk home lol) was watching the talented artist Lisa Farrows paint this milkshake container by hand for the shop. Her images can also be seen on the skateboards I posted earlier in the decor portion. It was really cool and the finished product was amazing!

Lisa Farrows Art at Bean and Baker Malt
Lisa Farrows Art

 

Now it’s really time to go. Thank you to everyone at Bean and Baker for making this event so much fun! And to the readers of this blog post…go and visit their shop (326 Harbord St.)! You will not be disappointed (I was not).

You can find them online here:

See you soon at the Malt Shop!

P.S. How are you loving my new camera? Takes great photos right?! 

Liz 🙂