Xtra-curricular S*ecre*t H*idde*n L*eve*l!!!!!!!


Xtra-curricular S*ecre*t H*idde*n L*eve*l!


You have just discovered the highly classified section of The Vintage Toy Advertiser!



That’s so awesome!!


Well done, you’ve come a long way! This section is hidden deep within the dark chasms of the uncategorized sections of The Vintage Toy Advertiser. It’s a bit like a hidden track on a CD, or a secret level of some mad video game! This level is so secret there aren’t any tags for it! Even I didn’t know it was here!!


“So, what do I win for finding my way here?”

Well, first, you get to battle a scary boss is what!

oops, sorry, not that one…

try this one…


Really, seriously, honestly, not really, the point of this section is to explore the more random side of vintage toys/advertising/magazines. A place where the regular stuff didn’t quite fit. A place where splellilng misktaés do’nt matter. The sort of stuff you’d find buried under the patio, or hurled – wriggling in a sack – from a speeding car.

So, sit back, relax, kick off your Ewok roller skates, light up your favourite pipe, and enjoy the random side of The Vintage Toy Advertiser!


Help!!! I never wanted to be here in the first place! I was only looking for eBay!


Great, let’s start by mentioning our good friend Stephen Fry, who happens to have the largest collection of UK vintage toy adverts in the world! Here is a great pic of Stephen with just a small selection of his favourite vintage toy advert albums.

Not only did Stephen invent Twitter, but he has also travelled the world in his black cab attending thousands of vintage toy advertising festivals. He’s been a great inspiration. Cheers Stephen!


Can I go back to my YouTube account now?

(Of course you can… but only if you have a Gmail account!)



TVTA is pleased to announce that we have just blackmailed hired a brand new team of staff writers! Currently situated in a temporary air-conditioned TVTA office (our attic with missing roof tiles), the writing team will soon be bringing you a feast of joined-up vowels and consonants wrapped up in various fonts to compliment our extensive collection of groovy adverts!

We took a quick photo of the official ‘welcoming’ party to celebrate their incarceration moving-in to TVTA office-land….




Now, let’s take a look at some 1970s/80s female bare-breasted comic characters from French comic PIF GADGET. As a Pif collector I’ve come across quite a few of these semi-naked panels from stories like RAHAN, COGAN and others. As a boy growing up in the UK, I don’t ever recall any nudity in the comics we had. But as you can see from the following, this seemed perfectly acceptable for the young readership of Pif Gadget…


pifings 003post

pifings 004post


Okay! That’s quite enough of that! Now, how do I get back to the home page?!!

Try clicking on this picture ….

… nope? Didn’t work? Didn’t think so. We’ve been trying that picture link for years and it’s never worked for us either.


Press Release!

Brilliant! I’ve just found my first ever press release for the blog. It was buried beneath a pile of vintage Look-in magazines and my Star Wars beaters! This was originally published in the Gannow Early Evening Morning Daily Standard:

My little Bonsai tree 

 One thing that has struck me since researching the history of all these toy manufacturers is just how many times these companies have gone bust – only to be bought-up by another company (often a rival). These, in turn, have often gone bust too – and another company strolls along with an open cheque book.

I’ve been continually surprised to discover what a HUGE ‘family’ tree can be traced from companies such as Mattel, Palitoy, kenner, Meccano, Humbrol, Hornby, Matchbox, Corgi, Dinky, Hotwheels, Mettoy, MPC, Revell, General Mills, Miro, Parker, Hasbro and many many more (You only have to look at the entry on the blog for BRITAINS to see this!). At some point or another they’ve all been connected. It would be some labour to document all this rich and colourful history – a task I don’t have the time for at the moment, but it’s certainly tempting to trace that HUGE family tree of toy production throughout the decades! Until then, I trust you will enjoy ‘my little bonsai tree’ of toy production: The Vintage Toy Advertiser!  


The Vintage Toy Advertiser… a great place to feel good and make friends!


But really… what am I doing here?!? I was only searching for vintage wine!!


Here’s my latest selection of Pif Gadget comics containing plenty of vintage toy advert goodness.


It’s just hit me! We have now published more than 200 images on The Vintage Toy Advertiser!! That’s enough adverts to stretch from here to the moon and back three times!! And hot enough to fry an egg!!


Question: Excuse me… is this the right place to buy vintage Star Wars action figures and playsets?

Answer: No. But we do have rather spiffing articles in TVTA all about vintage Star Wars action figures and playsets! Right here actually: cool Star Wars ads!!

Response to our answer: Thanks TVTA! You guys rock!!

Our reply to the response: You are most welcome!


Non-toy ads and cats called Wooof!

Hey, we were having a spring clean around our offices yesterday and came across these cool adverts that didn’t quite make it inside the pages of TVTA….

“Probably because they are not directly toy-related” was the answer from our English-speaking office cat, Wooof (named Wooof not because he looks like a dog – but rather he’s a dead ringer for Klaatu the ROTJ action figure who was tentatively called ‘Wooof’ before becoming ‘Klaatu’).

Thanks Wooof! Now go and catch some of those pesky mice down in the cellar that keep nibbling all those back issues of the Beano and Dandy. Grrr!

Erm, where were we…. ?

Yes, those cool adverts that didn’t make it into the TVTA… here’s a selection for you to check out. C’mon, don’t complain… at least they’re still 70s and 80s. Enjoy.

Pif 444. 1977. Smarties big WordPresswm

Creepy Mag_1980_115_New warriors battle jacketwm

Schtroumpfs Cream food_Pif 733_1983wm

The defenders. 46. 1977. King Kong movie adwm

Stop Press::Stop Press:: Stop Press

TVTA is pleased to announce that from late 2013 we will be having a regular new spot called ‘Non-toy ad Tuesday’. Why Tuesday? Sounds miles better than Monday or Wednesday. Non-toy ad Tuseday will endeavour to bring you a nifty selection of ’70s and ’80s ads that don’t feature toys. Bit like the ones above. We hope you enjoy our digression.


The Vintage Toy Advertiser is pleased to announce that we have now published 300 vintage toy ads!!300!!!!! That’s enough vintage adverts to fit inside twelve Wembley arenas, and big enough to see from space on a clear day!!
Congratulations TVTA !!


here’s a great poster I found that was an insert for the Sega F22 Interceptor. The reverse side shows other games available at the time.

EA Sega Air Force F22 Interceptor front

EA Sega Air Force F22 Interceptor back


TVTA would like to pause for a moment to say… Thank you Internet!



Toys: before their Six Million Dollar Man line, before their Star Wars line, Kenner gave us the Daddy saddle!



Do you say “Math” or “Maths” ?


Hard to believe that ads like these were once the norm. Nowadays this would easily provoke outrage and debate on social media. But back then your only avenue for outrage might have been an angry letter to the editor in your local newspaper. Let’s take a time-trip tour back in time just in time to see what such a letter might be like.

STAR LETTER! From Mr. A. Reader. Gannow. West Midlands.

Dear Sir, I wish to complain about the recent advert I saw for Texas Instruments bras. What is the point of obscuring what should have been a perfectly good view of a lovely lady advertising her upper-underwear by distracting us with silly calculator messages? Please refrain from this schoolboy nonsense and in future only publish proper and full pictures of bras. I am interested in purchasing such items for my wife this Christmas, so your compliance will be greatly appreciated.

Coming up… outrage alert!


Dear Sir, this is really more than I can take!! How in tarnation do I get out of this stupid secret level and continue my search for vintage egg cups, which is what brought me here in the first place!?!

TVTA says: we wish you success in your search for vintage egg cups! In the meantime, please stick around a while longer while we make a very important special announcement…




Yes! TVTA is pleased to announce that we have just published 500 vintage adverts!!! That’s enough adverts to successfully wallpaper the Great Wall of China three times, and cold enough to freeze 25,000 penguins all standing on their heads! Nice work TVTA!


Wow! Just found this cool pic of Toutou rolled-up down the back of the sofa covered in dust and sweet wrappers…. been looking for that for ages!

toutou musicien 1974 orig 1967 Gautier Languereau POST

If you find any old pics down the back of the sofa why not share them on a blog like how we do! Statistics show that 43% of pictures shared online are actually first discovered stuffed behind items of furniture!


Quit those midnight snacks with TVTA’s amazing Animal-in-a-Fridge!

Tired? Constantly hungry? Are you fed up of those late-night trips downstairs to the fridge to satisfy your out-of-hours hunger pangs? Then choose TVTA’s new amazing Animal-in-a-Fridge! You’ll never go near your appliance again. Lose weight fast! See pounds literally fall from your body as you are chased back upstairs! Forget about hunger instantly with your own personalised angry polar bear.



Road jammin head twister hip hoppin dream spinner… a 1985 UK ad for Yamaha keyboards.




POW! Oh yes, oh boy, TVTA has finally gone and done it… 1000 published vintage adverts!!!

TVTA is very pleased to announce we have passed the milestone of having published 1000 retro adverts! Great work eh? 1000 adverts… why, that’s enough adverts to stand higher than Mount Everest three times over, hot enough to melt an iceberg the size of Poland, and faster than a cheetah driving a F1 car!! We knew you could do it TVTA! Here’s to the next 1000 ads!



Hey! Still celebratin’ with us for 1000 ads? That’s so old-school! Get with the modern duck times man, and how about joining us in a quick trip in the TVTA time machine as we bypass many months and moons to suddenly celebrate 2000 published adverts!!!
Yes! We did it! 2000 adverts! Bravo TVTA! 


So what’s been happening lately?

Well, Wooof keeps changing the site logo. I don’t know why. It must be a cat thing to do. He thinks I don’t notice these little changes around here that he makes, but I do. Not only that I have been making screen captures!







The Vintage Tree Amplifier mini

Talking of logos and banners and things, Wooof recently made a sticker album of all the TVTA badges we’ve used. We’ve certainly come a long way! Some would say we still have far to go. Others would say we might as well give up as we’ll never reach our destination. One cheeky tyke even asked for a refund for the journey!

Sandrine, TVTA robot.

The Vintage Toast Atomiser. Nice attempt at a new TVTA logo, Wooof!




Reply to this blog post

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.