About The Vintage Toy Advertiser

The Vintage Toy Advertiser. TVTA’s mission is to digitally showcase 20th century advertising and other printed materials which have helped shape pop culture across the years - from toys, to books, to film, to music, to comics, video games, fashion, food, drink, and much more! TVTA began life in 2010 as a French blog documenting French toy adverts. In 2011 the site moved to its current WordPress home and expanded to include international printed materials that went beyond toys. Today the site is an ad-free, non-revenue platform aiming to serve as an excellent digital archive and resource. As well as archiving images, TVTA regularly presents poetry and short stories from the editor Ford Waight. Feel free to join our growing community and help spread the fun! TVTA is: Ford (Editor) and Wooof (Office Cat extraordinaire).

TVTA’s new site is up!

Greetings, vintage mates! Below is the link to my new site which is mostly ready to rock now. I already made a few test posts there using blocks and so far it’s looking okay. Please join me there as I continue to unpack and decorate the place 🙂

It’s called The Atomic Mage

Over the next few days I’ll work my way to (re)following you from there, and please feel free to follow me too – or to coin the phrase of fellow blogger Julie over at Darkside Creative please bother me and I will bother you right back 🙂

In TVTA news… look out later this week for a collaboration post between myself and FT from FTSabersite in tribute to the first ever Gerry Anderson Day! I originally intended to post my part here at TVTA, but due to zero disc space it’s going to go up at The Atomic Mage.

In other TVTA news… I already miss this place after only a week in the wilderness! The domain name for TVTA is still (and will remain so) under my ownership, so don’t be surprised if I make one or two ‘special posts’ throughout the year. Never say never and all that.

A big thank you to everyone who has reached out with well wishes. Hope everyone is doing good, keeping safe and staying creative!

Best, Ford

TVTA is retiring

Greetings vintage mates.

It is with a degree of sadness yet a positivity for the future of my blogging endeavours that I am announcing the retirement of The Vintage Toy Advertiser. At the least it will be a hiatus or very long holiday.

Since 2011 my aim for the site was to create an online resource and archive showcasing vintage advertising and catalogue images spanning the subject of toys, movies, comics, video games, food & drink and much more!

Ten years on – I think I’ve largely done as much as I can and want to do for the time being regarding this. The decision has been made easier by my dissatisfaction with the WordPress drive of switching to blocks. As a paying customer I am no longer willing to part with money for a service which does not meet the needs of TVTA.

My archive (4.5K advert and catalogue images + hundreds of toy images from my own collection + hundreds of comic book and magazine covers) was always meant to be added to and enhanced. Having to edit with blocks is unwieldy and time-consuming to maintain the good standards of my work, and it seems there are far too many hoops to have to jump through just to publish even a simple post these days… when blogging should be easy, quick, and fit for everyone’s purpose?

Another issue is that I will soon reach my current plan limit for image space, requiring me to upgrade to the next and more expensive plan with additional features I do not need. Maybe WP could consider offering one-off extra image space packages for blogs which are picture heavy? I doubt that. As much as I’ve always loved WP, they never seem to listen.

So, onto the future…

I will be launching a new site soon. Likely on WP still, but without the costs I’ve been incurring. The site will be simple. Focussed on writing, art projects, and with the occasional feature on vintage books and comics.

As such, The Vintage Toy Advertiser will no longer be updated, and will be left in the capable paws of TVTA office cat extraordinaire Wooof to curate while he idly munches his way through cat biscuits and re-watches all those VHS films we never returned to Blockbusters.

As for my dear vintage mates here… I intend to very much keep in touch, and I would like to give a HUGE, huge, huge, massive, storming, magnificent, mammoth, mega-big thanks to everyone who has been a part of TVTA over these past ten years. The interaction, inspiration, encouragement, fun and laughs, likes, comments, reblogs, shares and links has quite simply made my days 😊

It’s April, and April is my big TVTA blog anniversary – 10 years old this month! And now a retirement to add to it. Sometimes these things work this way.

I’ll leave you with a quick gallery of a few of my favourite archived images over the years (too many to choose from!!), and I’ll be sure to post the link soon for my new site once it’s up and running.

Adios you lovelies, see you on the other side! 😎

Ford, editor TVTA



As always, thanks for looking 🙂

Dinky TV toys, Capitaine Flam, 90s movies

From the Dinky Toys 1971 French catalogue – Gerry and Sylvia Anderson TV show toys; Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, UFO.


Thunderbirds

Lady Penelope’s FAB 1 car from Thunderbirds.


Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons

Spectrum Pursuit Vehicle (SPV) from Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons.


UFO

SHADO UFO Interceptor vehicle from UFO.


Cover. Dinky Toys catalogue. 1971. France.

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Weird War Tales – my growing collection

Weird War Tales was a DC anthology series of war-related stories blended with sci-fi, horror and the paranormal. Each issue was hosted by a character called ‘Death’ who was often drawn wearing a different military uniform for each issue. Recurring characters such as the Creature Commandos, G.I. Robot, and The War That Time Forgot became regular stories. The original title ran from 1971 to 1983 across 124 issues. In 1997 it was revised as a four part series, and in 2000 a one-off special.

Here is my collection so far. Many of the covers are drawn by one of my all-time favourite comic book artists Joe Kubert.

Weird War Tales advert. 1980.



Flushed

I’m linking up with Denise at Girlie On The Edge Blog where she hosts Six Sentence Stories and everyone is invited to write a story or poem constructed of six sentences based on a prompt word.

This week’s prompt word is Service


Flushed 

This DIY job is not a service but a replacement of vital parts, because the toilet cistern no longer flushes and its innards have fallen apart.

Luckily I remember some skills from when I was a 16 year-old apprentice plumbing and drainage engineer, back in Peaky Blinders land, ay, can still hear my gaffer say: “Water will always find its lowest level.”

Words of truth, but in this case the water has nowhere else to go – trapped, just sitting there idly in its ceramic fish tank waiting for replacement parts.

So it’s off with the tank lid, hands plunged into cold and calcified water, deep into the guts of this watery grave of broken plastic parts never meant to last or endure the hard water of our town’s supply.

Parts unscrewed, loosened, taken apart, brightly-coloured plastic contraptions of simple yet remarkable ingenuity pulled out like sunken hulks hoisted from the sea bed, then replaced with a brand new system all shiny and seaworthy for its future days in a 6 litre tank.

Job done – I marvel at my capability, thinking I have won; yet, water always does what it wants in the end and can easily make fools of our controlling ways; while some may believe the mark of civilisation lies in our art, our music, our architecture, our distribution of wealth – the true mark is simply how we try to manage the precious gift of water.


Editor’s note: The above is a true story – the flush has been threatening to go kaput for a while, so I ordered the spare part in anticipation. Also, I really was a plumbing and drainage apprentice based in Peaky Blinders land, Small Heath, Birmingham, by order! Props for good mate fellow WP blogster BK at Be Kitschig for telling me that if my adventures didn’t make into poem form I could always write a ‘flush fiction’ piece 🤣


Poem: by Ford.

Image #1: The Sleeze Brothers. Cloak and Dagger. Marvel. 1989. US.

Image #2: View-Master, 20,000 leagues under the sea. 1954.

McFarlane Toys: Spawn

Spawn Series 29. Tomarts Action Figure Digest. 2006. US.

We recently promised you… a splendiferous and spiffing spotlight on Spawn 😎

And we shall not disappoint! TVTA is proud to present Spawn action figure scans from the 1997 and 1999 McFarlane Toys catalogues, as well as other Spawn goodies! 

Spawn is a fictional antihero appearing in comic books of the same name published by Image Comics. Created by Canadian comic book creator, artist, writer, film maker and toy designer extraordinaire Todd McFarlane, the character Spawn first appeared in Spawn #1 in May 1992. The series has several spin-off comics, as well as a 1997 film adaptation, an HBO animated series, and a range of action figures as we shall see highlighted in this post! 

Let there be Spawn!

Spawn. McFarlane Toys Catalogue. 1999.


McFarlane Toys 1997 catalogue images

McFarlane Toys Catalogue. 1997.

Spawn The Movie Deluxe Boxed Assortment. McFarlane Toys Catalogue. 1997.

Spawn The Movie and Spawn Playstation. McFarlane Toys Catalogue. 1997.

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To Bring You My Love – a Project #2 extract for Six Sentence Stories

DNA-DNE-DNA-DNE

DNA-DNE-DNA-DNE


I’m linking up with Denise at Girlie On The Edge Blog where she hosts Six Sentence Stories and everyone is invited to write a story or poem constructed of six sentences based on a prompt word.

This week’s cue word is Journey


To Bring You My Love

The night train watchman bids her a safe journey behind his mask,

And sails away along the carriage in search of fish the bigger to fry.

And she – she winds back her thoughts to a lady and a lord –

DNA domina, DNE domine,

DNA-DNE-DNA-DNE…

The repetition makes the same sound as does her train

Clattering along rails under English skies.

A metal crate on wheels and track, parting mountains and rivers

To take her fast to her childhood love and a solemn pact.

Quickly now hurry, DNA-DNE-DNA-DNE, before my boy takes

His final breath, before he…

DNA-DNE-DNA-DNE.

***


“My Dear, which train shall I take to bring you my love? For the love of poets is vast and unbound, and many a reflection may be seen in scripts from their souls. Cryptic. A puzzle. A treasure map to the heart. Meet me there in words yet said. Match my love with time yet spent. Reciprocate the loving sentiment with your own true words of poetic beauty.”


Words: by Ford, extract from The Remains of She, the upcoming collaboration between Spira and Ford.

Art images: Spira and Ford. Train images: Marklin, Hornby, Lima. Stafford castle photos unknown.

March 10. 2021.

Kellogg’s Cornflakes 1951 promotion – my family link – ads found at last!

Let me take you back to a post I made in June 2018 concerning the discovery of promo photos from a 1951 Kellogg’s Cornflakes advertising campaign featuring my grandparents, and my mother and auntie when they were five-year old twins.

The promo photos:

(including digital repair versions, many thanks to For Tyeth)


The original post can be seen here but long story short: our family had never seen any of the adverts placed in newspapers or magazines from the time, despite many searches, and so much so that we began to view the event as a myth, even though we had some original pictures from the photo shoot.

That is, until now, and thanks to my super sleuth eldest cousin in the UK, we finally have proof that my family were indeed used in the campaign across not one, not two, but at least ten national and local newspapers across England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

To say I’m absolutely delighted to finally have scans of some of these adverts would be a huge understatement.

I’m still jumping for joy!

Here they are at last (click to enlarge) …

The Belfast Telegraph – 15 January. 1951.

Kellogg’s Cornflakes advert Waight family. Belfast Telegraph 15 Jan 1951.

The Coventry Evening Telegraph – Tuesday 23 January. 1951.

Kellogg’s Cornflakes advert Waight family. Coventry Evening Telegraph – Tuesday 23 January 1951.

1950s housewives and working husbands

I had to laugh at the outdated tone of the ads, with lines like: “My husband works harder on a good breakfast” and “Give a man Kellogg’s with his breakfast. My husband never misses his” – typical 1950s style statements if ever there was.

Of course, my nan never remained a cornflake-serving good housewife (and actually it was my grandad who did the cleaning and cooking once the girls had grown up). My nan went on to become an assistant nurse – the same job as I now do.


Here are some low res thumbnails of the other publications and their dates.


Thanks for looking! And remember… “A good breakfast should include Kellogg’s” 🙂