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


Kitschy Christmas!

We're still recovering from Holiday Wanderlust, and while all the cookies and cider were all gone by 9pm, the crowds stayed much later! The night was a total success and we were so happy to see so many people out supporting small businesses and sharing our Christmas cheer!
Cookies before the crowds came...they were all gone by 9pm!

We still have lots of vintage ornaments and Whigby ornaments left too, but if you're looking for something more kitschy, Ethel's your gal!

How about this vintage ceramic lamp with the original chartreuse 2 tiered fiberglass shade? Perfect for a rockabilly lounge, or film noir bedroom!
Lamp is $125

If you're going to a lot of holiday cocktail parties, then what about a set of vintage cocktail glasses for the hostess?
Set of 6 Pop Art Stars & Stripes - $30
Set of 6 Frosted highballs with red, white & blue straws, cherries and ice cube pattern - $30
UPDATE: Both sets of cocktail glasses have sold!

Or how about this decanter & shotglass set? Who said basketweave had to be granny?
Decanter set - $24
UPDATE: Decanter set has sold!

If you're the one throwing the cocktail party, then you need this vintage drinking game to get your guests in the holiday spirit!
Vintage "Bottoms Up" drinking game - $20
(Just make sure your guests are OK to drive after playing!)

For the gals (or guys) at the office, how about this pair of vintage 60's Pop Art coffee mugs from Japan, in electric green & blue? Their morning cup of coffee will never be so cheery!
Crazy Daisy mugs - $6 each.

If you're buying for a workaholic, then how about a vintage desk caddy? These cork desk organizers are very 70's executive. All you need is some thumbtacks, a wide tie and polyester suit!
Desk caddies - prices vary
UPDATE: desk caddies have both sold!

If you're shopping for a bookworm, how about a stack of vintage pulp novels? So trashy!
Pulp novels - $4 each or 3 for $10

If all else fails, you can stick with classic red and green.
Art glass, decanters and goblets - prices vary

So remember, kitsch is always good for Christmas!
See you at the store!


Keeping a green Christmas...

I received the email below from a very dear friend this morning and it really made me think why I am so proud to be an interior designer and vintage store owner.

Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide Canadians with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at the expense of Canadian labor. This year will be different. This year Canadians will give the gift of genuine concern for other Canadians. There is no longer an excuse ......that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by Canadian hands. Yes there is!
It's time to think outside the box. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?
Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local Canadian hair salon or barber?
Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.
Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, Canadian owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.
Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plunking down their credit cards on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.
There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town Canadians with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.
How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the Canadian working guy?
Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.
My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.
OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.
Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre.
Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.
Honestly, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.
You see, Christmas is no longer about draining Canadian pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about US, encouraging Canadian small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about other Canadians, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine. THIS is the new Canadian Christmas. Spread the Christmas cheer here....

Buying vintage is a great idea in so many ways not the least of which is that your gift will have virtually no carbon footprint, will be unique and will tell the world you have great taste!
If your friends and family aren't comfortable living with vintage (and really, haven't we all worn handmedowns at least once in our lives?) then maybe they'd like some interior design help. We offer gift certificates for our design services as well as our online only Take-Out Box service. Check out our sister site to see how you can give good design for Christmas!
Or, come by the shop and talk to us in person. We love talking about design and are always happy to meet new customers and clients.

See you at the store!


Red and Green never go out of style!

We're almost ready for Holiday Wanderlust here at the store. We set up the Christmas window, and this year we decided to go a little more oldschool. Last year we did "I'm dreaming of a Pink Christmas" and this years theme is "I'm dreaming of Christmas past..."
We filled the window with vintage toys and games, and a gorgeous teak lounge chair, newly reupholstered in the Eames Circle fabric.
Teak lounge chair is $895
Games and toys - prices vary

The vintage aluminum tree is an Ethel classic, but instead of going mod like we did last year, we went traditional with red and green balls (and the odd turquoise one...Ethel's favourite colour).

We also set up our Ethel Design window to promote our interior design business.
Hanging those letters so they hang evenly was a challenge!

It is getting cold out there, and what's the best remedy for cold weather? A tiki drink to remind you of summer (or in anticipation of a tropical getaway planned for February or March?)
We just got in a whole box of vintage tiki mugs for all you tikiphiles out there.
Tiki mugs are $15 each.

See you at the store!


Are those Jingle Bells I hear?

Leslieville's Holiday Wanderlust, the annual kick-off to the Christmas season is almost a week away and we're busy getting the store ready for the festivities.
We've been getting out all the vintage Christmas ornaments and carefully unpacking them.
Vintage ornaments - prices vary

We also just got in our Whigby ornaments and boxed card sets.
They've added a Mountie, a Canada Goose, a Stubby, and a Polar Bear to the collection this year so come by and check them out.
Ornaments $16 each.
Boxed Cards $15 each.

We'll be putting in the Christmas window before the weekend but we promise to not start playing Christmas music until the night of the party!
So come by on the evening of November 24th and share some Holiday cheer. Who knows, maybe even Ethel herself will make an appearance!
See you at the store!


Out with the old.....

It's time to get the store ready for the holidays; and to make room for all of the lovely vintage goodies we have lined up for you, we need to find homes for some of our favourite pieces.
This re-upholstered Throne chair was the highlight of our "I'm dreaming of a Pink Christmas" holiday window last year. This chair is fit for a princess, or even Prince (the purple one!).
Originally priced at $2400, it's now on sale for $1800. Won't you give this mod, majestic, chair a home?

Check out this Italian chrome lounge chair and matching ottoman.

The chrome frame is oh-so-70's and the original navy blue corduroy upholstery is in great shape.
Originally priced at $1495, it's now on sale for $900.
UPDATE: Blue chair has sold!

So if you need something fabulous to sit on, come by and check them out!
See you at the store!


Ethel's been busy!

Things have been crazy busy around the store lately. We were at the International Homeshow for four days last week, promoting our new interior design business, Ethel Design. You may have even caught us on Breakfast Television a week ago! If not, here's the link:
(We're on at the very end of this clip)
I also was on Sun News, talking about our design menu. Click here to see me in too much TV makeup!

Anyway, we're back in the store now and getting ready for the holidays, and the annual Leslieville Holiday Wanderlust party! We're officially launching Ethel Design that night, so come by the store for some cider, homemade cookies, and of course, holiday cheer!

See you at the store!