327 Queen St. East, between Parliament and Berkley streets, Toronto, Ontario, CANADA. 416.778.6608. email: info@ethel20thcenturyliving.com
Hours: Mondays by appointment, Tue - Thurs: 12pm - 6pm, Friday: 2pm - 7pm, Sat: 12 - 6, Sun: 12pm - 5pm


Have a seat!

There's department store danish and then there's Danish Modern.

These chairs are definitely the latter.
Whenever we see this style of chair, we always check for the "Made in Denmark" stamp as, in our experience, these ones are the best. There's many different variations of this chair frame out there. Some are a fixed frame, some are "knock down", designed for export, some have solid panel backs and some have back rungs, to allow the upholstery to peek through.

They're not always teak or rosewood (although this set is definitely teak) and sometimes are walnut and even maple and and usually, some are nicer than others. This pair is one of the nicest we've seen, with brass fittings and blade arms, this pair only needed a little TLC by way of new cushions and strapping by Princess Perfect to make them perfect for the store. Priced at $695 each or $1200 for the pair, these are perfect for a masculine den or a simple modern space. The small square coffee table between the two is from Sweden and is priced at $395.
UPDATE: Teak chairs have sold (Thanks Martin for the pedigree info!)

If you're looking for something a little more sculptural, we have another large diamond in. No, not a Tiffany diamond, a Diamond chair designed by Harry Bertoia.

This is a Knoll original, and is the larger of the diamond chair series. It has the grey fabric cover, but this can be removed to make it a more sculptural piece. The price is $1800, and if you know your Knoll, you'll know that's a great price.
So drop by the store and have a seat!
See you at the store!


Mad Men sale!

One of our favourite shows here at Ethel is, of course, Mad Men. We are so excited about tomorrow night's premiere and can't wait to see what Don Draper and the rest have been up to. We're hoping for more swanky interiors and more fabulous fashions on the ladies (not to mention the grey flannel suits on the men!). It's a great show to watch for design inspiration, but if we drank and smoked as much as the staff at Sterling Cooper, we'd be in big trouble!
Anyway, to celebrate the new season, we're offering 10% off on your purchase on Sunday July 25th only, if you mention the secret password when you come in. What's the secret password you ask? Where the truth lies!
See you at the store!


Storage solutions

If we asked our customers the one thing they need more of in their homes, the answer is usually storage. Most older Toronto homes (anything built before 1930) were built without closets, which probably explains why everyone is looking for coat racks, teak dressers and wardrobes! Well, we do have three teak dressers in right now, but even better are these sets of highschool lockers.

We have two sets of three, one set in orange and one in turquoise, and each set is $350. The turquoise lockers have shelves and the orange ones have coathooks.
UPDATE: Both sets of lockers have sold

We also have a set of four rows of open locker shelving, and while it requires some assembly (there is a centre panel which connects the two banks of two), it would make great bookshelves, or for all your highschool trophies! This set is $300.

We also got in this gorgeous early 60's dining set, complete with two extra leaves for the table, original upholstery on the chairs and great space age atomic detailing on the buffet & hutch pulls. The dining table & four chairs are priced at $1195 and the buffet & hutch is priced at $995.
UPDATE: The dining table and chairs have sold, but the buffet & hutch are still available

So if you want to relive your highschool days without the bad hair and acne, come by the store and check out the lockers. We won't tell anyone if you want to put cheesy posters of Zac Efron or Meghan Fox on the doors!
See you at the store!


Falling in love with art

Meet Eva:
Eva just arrived here at Ethel, and we have a suspicion that Eva and Ethel may have been bridge partners back in the day. Just look at that great Sophia Loren hair and those great, thick lashes. Bat those a few times and a few Mad Men were sure to fall at your feet! Anyhow, the thing about great art is that sometimes we fall in love a little with it while it's here in the store. Hubby is so smitten with Eva that he's threatened to take her home a few times already and she just got here! So, at $95 I'd suggest that you get in here quick and adopt her yourself! And speaking of great art, there are a number of pieces hanging at Ethel right now. Another original and rather psychedelic one done in 1967:And a few good quality prints:
Prices range from $150 to $225, plus there are smaller pieces with smaller prices, too, so something for every wall and budget!
Remember, Eva needs a home, so see you at the store!
UPDATE: The big electric blue & fuschia abstract Op Art painting has sold


Life is too short for Beige!

Along with colour, Ethel loves pattern. Life is too short for beige, she always says! So when we were deciding what to do with this Corbusier lounge and this refinished teak two seater, we decided to take her advice and have some fun. Also, we like to give Lisa Jo at Princess Perfect interesting project to work on!

Customers have been asking why we didn't just get another ponyskin cushion made for the lounger, as the original was falling apart and the foam had disintegrated, but we decided to something different. We went with a strong black and white graphic pattern, to reference the deco origins of the design, and to keep it neutral. We think it looks fantastic and at $1250 it's a great way to introduce a bit of modern into your space.

We were inspired by the bright bold patterns of Marimekko and Orla Kiely and the luxury of India HIcks when we chose the fabric for the teak two seater.

Perfect for a single gal's studio apartment for for your Palm Beach inspired sunroom, this beauty is priced at $1295, and would add some colour in your life. We even did a reversible seat cushion, with orange on one side and blue on the other, so you can change it up.

Stay tuned for more colour and fun as the summer progresses. Remember, life is too short for boring!
See you at the store!


Vintage Vera!

We just found out that there is a new book out, about the career and designs of one of Ethel's favourite designers, Vera Neumann. Known primarily for her textiles and her introduction to the market of patterned house linens (remember those crazy daisy bed sheets you had when you were a little kid...probably Vera Neumann!), she also designed patterns for dishware as well.
We have a platter from one of her dish sets in the store right now and we're always looking for more.

We are going to get a copy as soon as we can and read up on all of her fabulous textile designs. Ethel would approve!


Teak shelves a go go

Sometimes when we get certain pieces in, it's hard to part with them. Case in point, this wall mounted shelving system.
Similar to a Cado system, this one features three mounting rails, two regular shelves, one desk shelf, one angled magazine shelf (seen below on the floor), a swing lamp with pull switch, the flip down bar (lower right side) and the glass door unit (upper right). It's teak veneer and we think it could be Canadian made, but the glass shelf has a label stamped "Belgium" so we can't be sure.
When we first got it in, it was in pieces around the store, and even though the pricetag included a photo of a similar system mounted to the wall, it was hard for customers to understand how it all worked. So we had our contractor install it in the store, and once it was up, we decided we liked it too much and it was working really well for merchandising so we took the pricetag off. Of course, this meant that everyone now wanted to buy it and we kept telling them we'd be selling it once we reconfigured the store (It's on the wall we want to use for the cards and paper from Whigby, once the cash desk is moved). So to make a long story short, we've put it back on the sales floor, so to speak, for $850. So all of you out there that have been lusting after it, it's now yours for the taking.

We've also decided to reduce the price on this set of three chairs.

As you can probably guess, it's hard to get multiples with vintage seating and while we know we could sell four of these chairs as a set in a heartbeat, it's a different story when there's only three. So they're now 50% off, down from $150 each to $75 each, or all three for $200. They have the original white vinyl upholstery and black painted frames, with a swivel back for comfort. Don't think of them as dining chairs, think of them as side chairs!
See you at the store!


The purple People Eater has left the building

Well...not quite.
The big beautiful purple sectional that has been in the store for a few months now, taking up a lot of room, finally sold this morning. It won't be going out until mid-July so you can still come visit it before it goes off to it's new home.
ByeBye purple people eater!


Ethel is expanding!

As some of you may know, we sublease the back of our store to an architect friend who needed office space when he started his own firm last year. Well, he's been doing really well and is moving to bigger digs at the end of July so we will get our back space back. We're really excited as we have a lot of gorgeous stuff in storage right now waiting until there's room in the store for it.
So stay tuned for progress on the back room as we get it ready to showcase more furniture and fun stuff here at Ethel.
See you at the store!


Coral is very Palm Beach!

We're at the store, enjoying the sunshine and some Canuck tunes, after spending the morning getting the store looking all gorgeous with our new teak furniture.
Here's a pair of teak coffee tables, one long, one square, with brass details. Each table is $395.

Also seen on the long table is a gorgeous vintage ceramic lamp with gold and coral details. This lamp has it's original shade and glass finial and is very Dorothy Draper, and as we all know, coral is one of the hot colours this year. Priced at $250, it'll look fabulous with your turquoise sofa!
Or you could pair it up with this Made in Denmark lounge chair.

Stripped and refinished with new cushions by Princess Perfect, this chair is very Palm Beach with it's classic basket weave upholstery in coral and ivory. It's priced at $595.
UPDATE: Teak chair with Coral colour upholstery has sold!

We also got this lovely teak desk in, with three big drawers and one small pencil drawer. It's very Sterling Cooper and can be yours for $595.

There's a lot more so drop by the store to check it out.
See you at the store!

Happy Canada Day!

Ethel will be open today for Canada day, so if you're in Leslieville, drop by the store and help us celebrate Canada by learning about Canadian design. Since it is a holiday, and we want to catch the local Canada Day Parade before opening, we'll be open at 12:30, and closing at 5.
See you at the store!