Lilley Luggage, 1931 In a day when travel is quick and airlines discourage us from checking bags with us, it takes a real mental effort to consider travel preparation from long ago. When crossing the country or the ocean took days or weeks by train or by boat, you really had to take packing seriously … Continue reading Serious Luggage for Serious Travelers
Garden catalogs are — pardon the pun – a perennial. Wards devoted the first 11 pages of this 1961 garden catalog to no less than 73 varieties of roses… Continue reading A Riot of Roses
I’ve never walked into a Sears store and walked out with bees. Never even considered it. And actually I guess I never COULD have walked into a Sears Store and walked out with bees or beekeeping supplies. But I could have ordered them from a Sears Catalog… Continue reading Guess you had to BEE there
D.M. Ferry Seeds Almanac and Catalogue, 1908 / What the heck is “Salisfy”? Not only are some of the vegetables obscure, some of the spellings are too: “Spinage” and “Ruta Baga” look funny to modern eyes. But Ferry must know what they were writing about – in 1908 the company was already 52 years old. Thriving, too… Continue reading The Season for Salisfy
Oldsmobile Eight sales catalog, 1936 Auto catalogs have always been sensuous sales tools, managing to make even the smallest utilitarian cars look luxurious. These days it’s done with extreme photography and computer-enhanced imagery. In 1936 it was done through the most elegant of Art-Deco artwork. Just look at that illustration, and never mind the car … Continue reading Streamline Moderne, in home and car
Why double-decked buses have thrived in England to this day but never met much success in America, is a mystery to the author. Double-deck buses are just so…cool and entertaining… Continue reading Where are the double-decker buses of yesteryear?
What to my wondering eyes should appear? It’s a baby sleigh! No tiny reindeer involved – these are to be pushed by an adult when taking the Dear Little One on an outing in the cold wintertime. This could be useful even a hundred years later — assuming you have the climate for it. Continue reading Where have “baby sleighs” gone?
In 1958, Velcro was brand-new, space-age technology imported from England. The ideal place to use it? Down the front of a man's jacket! At least that's what Sears did for Christmas. Continue reading The hot new Christmas Gift for 1958: Velcro!
Kids today play different than they used to. There was a time when boys would be expected to build scale models. Back then every neighborhood seemed to have a local hobby show, a quality scale model plane could be bought for $4.95, and you could ask your Father to help … Continue reading Flown clear out of sight
1943. World War II. Suddenly there are females now serving the war effort – the Women’s Army Corps, or “WACs”. This Quartermasters’ catalog devotes page after page to official regulation supplies for the new female Army personnel… Continue reading What the Well-Dressed WAC will Wear…