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


The Autumn Leaves are falling....

It's three days after the fall equinox which means summer is officially over, and while it's balmy and sunny out there today, we know that the cool crisp days of brisk winds, falling leaves and hot chocolate are just around the corner. In fact, we're looking forward to fall weather as Ethel has promised us we can shop for a fabulous pair of new boots this year!

Anyway, in anticipation of the colours turning, we decided we'd showcase some fall colours in the window.

Doesn't this scene make you want to fix yourself a hot toddy, curl up with a good book, or better yet, catch all the new fall premieres on tv? The pair of lounge chairs are $575 each, or $1000 for the pair, the teak end tables are $175 each, and the slat coffee table/bench with the new orange cushion is $495.
UPDATE: Chairs, teak end table & slat coffee table have sold!

Here's a close up of one of the vintage ashtrays.

We love this very retro Canadian leaf pattern and think it looks great on the teak table. It's priced at $12 and you don't have to smoke to love ashtrays!

If you're not a smoker, and you don't watch TV, you probably like playing boardgames. Why not play a vintage one?

Ranging in price from $12 to $20, these are perfect for whiling away a chilly Sunday afternoon.

We love this large Bertoia Diamond chair and think it'd be a perfect spot to curl up and read a book (or, again, to watch all that juicy fall TV). The lovely grey upholstery makes this chair so comfortable that whenever we sit in it, we're in danger of having a nap, so we want someone else to enjoy it. We've reduced the price on this Knoll original from $1800 to $1400

So drop by the store and check out the fall colours. And if you have any suggestions on where to get a fabulous pair of boots, let Ethel know!
See you at the store!


New Modernism Magazine is here!

The new fall 2010 issue of Modernism Magazine just arrived, chock full of fabulous articles on Mexican architect Viva Mario Pani, Visions of Progress, the 1933 Chicago World's Fair, and much more.
Plus, we still have a few copies of the summer 2010 Modernism Magazine left, so drop by the store and pick up both!
See you at the store!


Back room open for business!!!

It's been over a week since we posted, but that's because we've been soooo busy getting the back room open for business again. As you may have read in earlier posts, Ethel had a resident architect, Paul Dowsett of Sustainable.to (and resident store kitty, Edyth) who just moved to bigger digs, so instead of finding another tenant, we've decided to restore the back room back to retail. It took a week to get it all cleaned up, and set up with some fabulous furniture, lighting and other fun stuff, and it looks great.

Thanks to our hubby Dave and his handybro brother Billy, we finally got the slatwall installed and painted our favourite colour.

We're going to be bringing in more card and paper lines but for now it looks real jazzy with the vintage harlequin romances, and the collection of Maureen O'Connor's photos.

Beyond the slatwall, just past the arch, is one of those "will it work out?" projects.

We got this set of metal shelf lockers the same time as the turquoise and orange lockers but they were pretty beat up and we weren't sure if they were up to Ethel's standards. After languishing in pieces in the store basement for the past three months, Dave and Billy hauled them out, assembled them and after a lot of scrubbing by yours truly, they're ready for the floor. They work so well as merchandising, I'm not sure if we're going to sell them yet!

We get a lot of customers asking if we have bedroom sets, and we never had room for them before, but now that we have more floorspace, we thought we'd try it out.
Check out this fabulous teak platform bed complete with nightstands.

We've added this funky vintage 70's op art bedspread ($65 and freshly laundered!) to complete the look. The painting above the bed is not for sale but is available for prop rentals.

We also are finally able to pull out the vintage Clairtone.

This model is the 200-S Stereo console, (we think), and was introduced in 1958. While this style of "hifi" was popular back in the day, the size of them, and the outdated electronic components makes them hard to sell today. Plus, most people don't want a turntable, and rely on their ipods for their music. Still, Clairtone was one of Canada's best stereo manufacturers and they produced the iconic Project G, which is sought after by midmod collectors worldwide. We'll see if we can get this baby up and running and maybe we'll play some vintage Sinatra in the store!

If you're looking for later 20th century stuff, we've got this fabulous oval smoked glass and chrome dining table, complete with Miami Vice era pastel ceramics.

The black and turquoise teapot and tea mugs are by Leslieville's own Helen Cloney of Beyond The Pale, a popular ceramics and pottery studio not far from the store. We love the pastel squiggles and geometric shapes and it makes us think of watching 80's era music videos.

So come by and check out Ethel's newly restored back end.
See you at the store!


Atomic Playhouse for sale!

As mentioned earlier, we are selling our house. Well, the listing went up yesterday so here's the MLS link. (You may have to cut and paste)
So if you know anyone who's looking for a swanky suburban house, please pass this on. And if your referral results in someone buying our house, then come into the store and we'll give you a big fat discount!
See you at the store!


Ethel's menagerie

As many of you know, we have a store kitty named Edyth. Well, Edyth is moving next week to a bigger and better home when Sustainable.to, the architecture firm who rents the back of the store moves to their bigger and better office. You see, Edyth was just "on loan" to Ethel, and while we know our customers will miss her, there are a lot of animals in the store to keep you company.

How about this ceramic poodle planter?

Priced at $22, this perky pooch will look fabulous on your kitchen windowsill or boudoir nightstand.

If you're not a dog lover, how about a feathered friend?

This pair of vintage ceramic owls are $15 each and would look great in your 70's era space.
UPDATE: Both owls have sold

If owls aren't your thing, how about this pair of resin roosters?

Perfect for your kitchen, they are priced at $15 for the pair. Cheep cheep cheep!
UPDATE: Roosters have sold

If you prefer more exotic species to keep you company, lets take a trip to the Ethel jungle to visit this sleek black vintage ceramic panther planter.

This baby is the height of kitsch and is priced at $24.

While we're still in the jungle, lets visit our friends the lucite rhino and elephant.

This mod pair are 1970's Team Guzzini Italian Lucite Animal Sculptures, and they catch the light so beautifully. They would look fantastic on a coffee table or in a stylish nursery. Elephant is $45 and rhino is $35.
UPDATE: Elephant and Rhino have sold!

These two would also be perfect for a nursery.

From Areaware, the kangaroo and zebra pillows are $65 each or $100 for the pair. Come soon though, these are quickly becoming extinct in the Ethel animal kingdom and are the only two left!

If you prefer the ocean, then check out this kitschy set of dolphins.

This family of three can frolick their day away hanging on your bathroom wall, and are priced at $20 for the set.

How about this mermaid lamp?

While strictly not a real "animal" this bathing beauty is vintage deco and would dress up your makeup table for $65

Anyway, come by and visit Ethel's menagerie and you may just want to take one of these lovable creatures home. Remember, Edyth is cute and all, but these animals don't shed, or need to be fed, and no vet bill to worry about. Perfect housepets!
See you at the store!


House for sale

It's Labour Day weekend and it's raining, which adds to our melancholy mood.
Don't worry, everything is peachy keen at the store. Ethel is fabulous and we wouldn't have it any other way.
The reason we're melancholy is we're witnessing the end of an era. Yes, my husband and I have decided to sell our beloved Atomic Playhouse in the suburbs and move back downtown. We love our split level mid century house, but we are both downtowners at heart and are moving back into the heart of the city. So if you know anyone who is looking for a fabulous early 60's architect designed house with a great backyard and a basement tiki bar, drop by the store and we'll talk. Or you can talk to our realtor, as our house will be listed in a week or two.
If you want to read more about our house, check out the column my husband wrote about our house in this week's Globe and Mail.
(not sure how to post hyperlinks, but you can cut and paste.) Or you can check out our houseblog which is on the blogroll on the left (Adventures in the Atomic Playhouse).
Its the end of an era, but there's more adventures around the corner. Just ask Ethel!
See you at the store!


Labour Day Love

This weekend is the Labour Day long weekend, and while some of you lucky people are celebrating by heading out of town for one last blast at the cottage, we here at Ethel are sticking around the city. To keep things exciting at the store, we're having a sidewalk sale, to move out some stuff that's been around the store a little too long, and to make room for more fabulous vintage finds.
So drop by the store to check out the deals, and say "hi"
See you at the store!