December 20, 2010

Show & Tell: Our Playmobil Victorian dollhouse, a Christmas tradition.

I have mentioned before that I never really outgrew toys, right? Well, here's even more proof of it! Yes, this beautiful Playmobil Victorian dollhouse has graced our home for the holidays, proudly displayed by, or near, the Christmas tree for almost 18 years. And it is certainly one of my favorite Christmas traditions!

When it isn't out at Christmastime, it's tucked away up in a closet the entire rest of the year, so you can imagine how dusty it gets. I actually kind of enjoy the whole process of taking it down, meticulously cleaning it (inside and out), and then, the BEST part of all... placing the furniture and people inside!!

The following photos are a somewhat goofy gallery of interior shots (plus a few exterior) just to give you a closer look. Btw, for some reason, I had a devil of a time getting the lighting just right. So if they seem a bit funky, that's why. Enjoy!

Here is the back side of the house, with
"handy" access to all rooms and floors.

These lovely ladies are relaxing in the living room and
enjoying a command performance by the pianist
on the left (you'll see his piano in the next shot).

Here is the artist at work, on a piano that really plays!
(Well, technically, it's just an electronic tune when
you press down on the keys...)

One of many maids, Sophie arranges place
settings at the formal dining room table.

Meanwhile, out in the nearby moonlit forest, a small
family of deer is seen grazing along the barren, icy floor.

Jane, the kitchen maid.

Jacques, the house chef.

Maxwell, the family dog.

Grampa enjoys his newspaper next to a toasty fire.

Unbeknownst to Grampa, a fiendish
imposter lurks in the shadows nearby...

Look out, Grampa... She's right behind you!

Between the den and the veranda lies one of the
bedrooms simply referred to as the Flower Room.
(Notice the detail of the chamber pot sitting on
the floor, next to the bed. Sign o' the times!)

Out on the veranda, a professional photographer
takes a lovely holiday portrait of a fine couple.

Here we see the other bedroom, aka the Red Room,
and it looks as though we've caught a young couple
just settling in for a nice, long Winter's nap... 

Yet another maid, Louise, ensures that sanitary
standards are upheld at all times in
the house's one and only bathroom.
(It ain't a fun gig.)

As we progress up the stairs to
the attic nursery, we can see both
kitties AND kiddies.
(Har, har! Get it?)

Like typical children, this close to
Christmas it's real hard to go to sleep!

Well, folks, that concludes our tour of the Playmobil Victorian dollhouse. Sure hope you liked it! Until next time, I wish everyone a very merry Happy Holiday and a shiny New Year!!

~ All photos property of Anthony See. ~

December 6, 2010

"Hey, Santa! Whatcha sellin'?" - The jolly old elf in advertising.

How can anyone say "No" to a face like that? Besides, it's freakin' Santa Claus! And WHO doesn't like him?? Well, if YOU don't, go play on the freeway. You're dumb! Plus, you'll probably get coal in your stocking...

Anyway, for the rest of us who DO still like good ol' Saint Nick, I've compiled a gallery to display just some of the finer examples of his contribution to advertising. This would also be considered an "old skool" edition, mostly because I don't think any of these ads date past the 1960s. Oh, and F.Y.I., these are only the tip of the iceberg. As I continue to sort through and find more gems, I'm sure the urge to share will be much too hard to resist! So, for now, please enjoy what I've collected below.

I really like how colorful this is! And how great is it that
the "train" is actually one of the Christmas crackers?!

I think the detailed artwork in this is very
impressive! Love the lettering font, too!

As if Santa wasn't already huge enough with
everyone, here he's quite literally HUGE...
He's a GIANT! Just look at how he towers
over those rocky mountains beneath him!
And I'm sure it's because he eats lots and
lots of Sunkist Seedless Navel Oranges!

I can't even tell you how MUCH I absolutely
LOVE this image! It just makes me HAPPY
in all sorts of ways! Even just the name
"Ribbon Candy Rocket" makes me giddy...
Yep, I'm gay.

I like this, but what I DON'T like is how
Jack and Betty just demand, "Bring us
Tinker Toys." WHERE, may I ask, is the
"Please" in that request? Hmm? I think
Santa ought to skip their house!

Isn't this great? I just hope that was the
LAST house on Santa's route...

Again, another very pleasing one to me!

I don't know about you, but a Thermos has
NEVER been on MY Christmas wish list.

It'd sure be a shame if all Santa was carrying
in his bag-o-tricks was Colgate products, huh?
He'd BETTER have some toys in there, too!

Not sure if this is from the 1950s or '60s, but it
rings early '60s to me, for some reason. Is Santa
actually demonstrating that the television is
slightly narrower than his own waistline?
Could that really be a selling point?

This is quite nice.
It reminds me of Santa's Village!

Well, that'll do it for today's gallery, kids. Check back again, real soon, to see what else is NEW at the circus! In the meantime, try to relax and enjoy the holiday season. "See" you later!

~ All images taken from the book, 'Christmas: Vintage Holiday Graphics'. Edited by Jim Heimann. Published by Taschen. ~
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