1971 die-cast models and art from Matchbox

Curious. Does anyone else think the mountain race track peak looks like Batman?

Art vs Photography and the two combined

I’ve mentioned before that some of my favourite toy advertising images come from the 1960s and 1970s. This is because many products back then were advertised using original art – often drawn by in-house company artists, rather than the product photography style which became popular in the years that followed. That’s not to say photograph adverts were employed pre-1980s, they were, but perhaps it was cheaper to produce ad materials with drawings rather than photos back then?

The following images from the 1971 Matchbox Collectors Catalogue illustrate perfectly, and with some charm, how products might capture the imagination of the buyer when rendered as art. As well, some images feature both art and photography. The ideal mix, perhaps.

Cover. Matchbox Collectors Catalogue. 1971. France.

Matchbox Speed kings. 1971.

Matchbox Autopark. 1971.



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Brumm’s classic race cars 1930s – 1960s

Brumm catalogue. 1983. Italy.

Brumm is an Italian toy manufacturer formed in the early 1970s. The company specialises in miniature plastic and die cast vehicles from a bygone age.

TVTA is pleased to present selected images and the full scans from the Brumm 1983 catalogue, featuring some wonderful artwork and photographs of models available at the time such as Ferrari, Bugatti, Mercedes, and Alfa Romeo.

Team Brumm. Pit stop play set.

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Brumm – tiny toy wonders, 1980 Italian catalogue


Brumm is an Italian toy manufacturer formed in the early 1970s. The company specialises in miniature plastic and die cast vehicles from a bygone age, such as steam-powered transport, horse-drawn carriages, old fire engines, and vintage road and racing cars.

TVTA is pleased to present the full scans from an Italian catalogue featuring the Brumm range as it appeared in 1980. En plus… Look out for the 1983 Brumm catalogue coming to these pages soon!

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Western Models – quality hand-built model cars

Western Models 1982 catalogue poster. Artwork by K. Williams.

Founded in the UK in 1973 by husband and wife team Mike and Joyce Stephens, Western Models produced a range of white-metal casted cars both in kit form and fully finished. Their high quality models were aimed at collectors and enthusiasts, and were typically hand-built from a lead-based white metal. Some vehicles were produced in extremely limited quantities of as little as one-thousand per model, making them highly sought after at the time. Models such as the F1 range and racing cars were specially licensed and built with the co-operation of the racing teams of the day.

Western Models continues to exist to date though it now focuses on producing model aircraft. The following scans are from the 1982 and 1983 poster catalogues, and feature the typical 1:43rd scale vehicle range available at the time, along with its newest innovation line of 1:24th scale vehicles featuring ‘authentic wire like wheels’, or ‘realistic photo-etched wheels’ – often referred to as the ‘Small Wheels’ models.

I’ve never owned a Western Models car but would certainly like to! Looking at the images in the two catalogues you can see the amount of detail, care and attention that went into making these top quality models.

Enjoy the scans.




Information taken from the Western Models poster catalogues 1982 and 1983 – purchased and scanned by TVTA, the company website Western Models, and the Western Models Wikipedia page

As always, thanks for looking 🙂

Curve Huggers by Tyco

Curve Huggers was a slot car racing track system sold by Tyco Industries. Popular in the 1970s, Curve Hugger cars were available with working lights and came in a number of different racing models. Track sets included the Laguna 2-in-1 Pro Racing, Nite-Glow Electric Racing, Tyco Championship 1000 – offering an enormous 37 feet of racing action, and the Road Race Empire – offering a whopping 54 feet of track action! Below are two US print adverts showing the Silver Streak and HP2 line of vehicles.

Curve Huggers. US. 1977.

Curve Huggers. US. 1978


Thanks for looking 🙂