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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Wonderful Illustrators. Gyo Fujikawa

Gyo Fujikawa was born on November 3rd 1908, in Berkeley, California, America, to Japanese parents.

She was an American illustrator and children's book author.


(Sketch taken from

Gyo attended the Chouinard Art Institute.
She worked for Walt Disney Company, in California, as a promotional artist.

After moving to New York in 1941, her first published children's book appeared in 1957. This was Robert Louis Stevenson's, 'A Child's Garden of Verses' which she illustrated for Grosset & Dunlap.

The first book written and illustrated by Gyo Fujikawa was, 'Babies' in 1963

Over the years, she was published in more than 50 books for children.
Translated into 17 languages.
Published in 22 countries.

Her most popular books, 'Babies' and 'Baby Animals' sold over 1.7 million copies in US.

Gyo also undertook other work, such as designing 6 stamps for US Post Office.

(Picture taken from

She designed for Beech-Nut baby food

(Pictures taken from

and Eskimo Pie.

(Pictures taken from

Although she became engaged at age 19, she never married.

Gyo Fujikawa died, in New York, November 26th 1998

Her illustrations make wonderful framed art. As she is one of my personal favourites, I usually have one or two, at least, ready to frame illustrations of her's for sale in my shop...

(Information taken from Wikipedia)

Sunday, 22 July 2012

The Joys of Scrapbooking, by Guest Writer Jody Malone, of Scraptherapy...

At the start of the month, I wrote a post about beginning scrapbooking


I am however, no expert on the subject, so I asked somebody who is, to write a piece from her point of view. I respect Jody Malone, who runs Scraptherapy, as somebody who has loved scrapbooking for years and incorporates it into her life in many ways.
I am glad to say that she kindly agreed to tell us about her love of the subject and I hope it inspires you. I am sure that it will...

I love to craft. I grew up in a home where I was taught  ~if you want it, make it~ and that’s exactly how I have spent my life. From sewing to altered art, faux finishing, Tole painting and more I can use all these mediums in my scrapbooking. 

I love to collect vintage cards. There’s something about them. Maybe it’s because they were sent in love to someone in the past and that makes them so special and I just love the way they look. I can copy them and use them in my work.

 I have scrapbooked since I was little, my mother scrapbooked as well. My grandmother kept the family history on my father’s side and about a decade ago she started passing all the info to me. So the family ancestry has become my journey and I really enjoy it. I am a bit out of the box so I tend to use all sorts of items that do not come from the scrapbooking aisles.  I have been scrapbooking for a long time and I love using vintage items so that is what I search for when going to yard sales, fleas markets and more to incorporate into my work. Now there is just so much more to choose from and it’s become a passion.

Teaching classes over the years has cluttered up my little Scraptherapy studio to the point I cannot breathe in there and it has stifled my creativity. I need order to create so I had to do something about it! That’s another story I will be putting on my facebook page and hopefully my blog.

  I made a book for my husband’s football career during college back in the late 70s for a gift only to redo it  a while back so it’s on acid free papers. So there has been a lot of redoing in my world to make sure things are preserved. When my son signed up for the military back in 2002, I started a Family Military Heritage album. 

I have been honored to be published in Altered Art Magazine and I hold a once a month Scraptherapy crop and have scrapbooked all types of books for clients and taught classes.
Here’s a list of my pages:

I would like to thank Jody so much for taking the time to write this piece for Vintage Vic. She is a lady of many talents, so her time is precious and I am thrilled that she managed to fit this in. I hope she has inspired you with your crafts.

I have placed a link on this page, to the Scraptherapy Facebook page, so you may follow Jody further, with her love for scrapbooking, crafting and all things vintage. You will find it on the left side of my blog page.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

The Olympic Torch Passes Through My Home Town...A Little Too Fast!

Today at 8.30am, I watched the Olympic torch carried through my home town. (Seaside town of Deal in Kent, England.)

I was not sure what to expect, but it was really rather nice. Amazingly, the rain held off and we enjoyed bright sunshine! (Summer this year, seems to have forgotten us, with rain everyday for weeks.) 

The streets were full of Union Jack waving people. Lots of children were missing an hour from school to see this event. 

Before the torch arrived, there was a fun little parade to entertain the crowds.

Stunt cyclists entertained the crowds

Streamers were handed out to the children to wave

Metropolitan police 'high fived ' the children as they went past on their huge police motorbikes

Then the torch arrived. Unfortunately, she was moving rather fast and I did not manage to get a front picture!!

The flame had not gone out! You could only see it clearly from the front. Oops sorry!

Sometimes people in this country feel that patriotism is not encouraged, but it was certainly present today!

The London Olympics begin on Friday 27th  July

Opening ceremony

(Taken from Wikipedia)

The Opening ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics will be held on 27 July 2012 and be called "The Isles of Wonder".[148] Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle will be the artistic director for the opening ceremony and the music directors will be Rick Smith and Karl Hyde of the electronic music duo Underworld.[149]
The games will be officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.[150] A short film starring Daniel Craig as secret agent James Bond will be screened during the television coverage of the ceremony.[151] Sir Paul McCartney has announced he will perform at the end of the ceremony.[152]

I hope that all the visitors to the London Olympics enjoy their visit here and do well.



Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Hilda Pictures...Just Arrived at Vintage Vic's

These pictures just arrived and I could not wait to show you! Will be going into Vintage Vic's shop tomorrow, with better photographs and more details!

Enid Blyton...A Bit of a Shock!

Enid Blyton

It was around last Christmas time, that I watched, for the first time, the film Enid, starring Helena Bonham Carter. It is a portrayal of the life of author, Enid Blyton.

Enid, the dvd

A lifelong fan of Blyton's work, I own lots of well read copies of her children's books. My favourites amongst others being,The Faraway Tree, The Wishing Chair, Amelia Jane and of course, Noddy. I have since watched my children enjoy them also.

Therefore, when I settled down with my festive box of chocs to enjoy the film, I was in for a bit of a shock! I had always imagined her to be as warm and comforting as her stories...According to this film, that was very much not the case. Well acted, by a fantastic cast, the tale unfolds of a really rather unpleasant woman. She is even seen threatening to sack her chauffeur, if his cold is not gone "by Friday".

I very much enjoyed the film and would highly recommend it, but still did not wish to believe their portrayal of the author of my beloved story books. I needed to double check. Next stop, Wikipedia. Now, I know that people say,  you cannot always totally rely on the facts given on that website, but I was just looking for a general idea of the lady in question. Below are pieces taken from Wikipedia...

Blyton was born on 11 August 1897 at 354 Lordship Lane, East Dulwich, London, England, the eldest child of Thomas Carey Blyton (1870–1920), a salesman of cutlery, and his wife, Theresa Mary Harrison Blyton (1874–1950). There were two younger brothers, Hanly (1899–1983) and Carey (1902–1976), who were born after the family had moved to the nearby suburb of Beckenham—in Oakwood Avenue. Blyton adored her father and was devastated after he left the family to live with another woman; this has often been cited as the reason behind her emotional immaturity. Blyton and her mother did not have a good relationship, and later in life, Blyton claimed to others that her mother was dead. After both her parents did die, Blyton attended neither of their funerals.

Blyton was a talented pianist, but gave up her musical studies when she trained as a teacher at Ipswich High School.[2] She taught for five years at BickleySurbiton and Chessington, writing in her spare time. Her first book, Child Whispers, a collection of poems, was published in 1922. On 28 August 1924 Blyton married Major Hugh Alexander Pollock, DSO(1888–1971), editor of the book department in the publishing firm of George Newnes, which published two of her books that year.( The couple moved to Bourne End, Buckinghamshire(Peterswood in her books).[3] Eventually they moved to a house in Beaconsfield, namedGreen Hedges by Blyton's readers following a competition in Sunny Stories. They had two children: Gillian Mary Baverstock (15 July 1931 – 24 June 2007) and Imogen Mary Smallwood (born 27 October 1935).

Enid and her daughters

By 1939 her marriage to Pollock was in difficulties, and she began a series of affairs. In 1941 she met Kenneth Fraser Darrell Waters, a London surgeon with whom she began a relationship. During her divorce, Blyton blackmailed Major Pollock into taking full blame for the failure of the marriage, knowing that exposure of her adultery would ruin her public image. She promised that if he admitted to charges of infidelity, she would allow him unlimited access to their daughters. However, after the divorce, Pollock was forbidden to contact his daughters, and Blyton ensured he was unable to find work in publishing afterward. He turned to drinking heavily and was forced to petition for bankruptcy.

Blyton and Dr. Darrell Waters married at the City of Westminster Register Office on 20 October 1943, and she subsequently changed the surname of her two daughters to Waters. Pollock remarried thereafter. Blyton's second marriage was very happy and, as far as her public image was concerned, she moved smoothly into her role as a devoted doctor's wife, living with him and her two daughters at Green Hedges.

Green Hedges

Blyton's husband died in 1967. During the following months, she became increasingly ill. Afflicted by Alzheimer's disease, Blyton was moved into a nursing home three months before her death; she died at the Greenways Nursing Home, London, on 28 November 1968, aged 71 years and was cremated at the Golders Green Crematorium where her ashes remain.
Blyton's home, Green Hedges, was sold in 1971 and demolished in 1973. The area where Green Hedges once stood is now occupied by houses and a street called Blyton Close. Her daughter Imogen has been quoted as saying "The truth is Enid Blyton was arrogant, insecure, pretentious, very skilled at putting difficult or unpleasant things out of her mind, and without a trace of maternal instinct. As a child, I viewed her as a rather strict authority. As an adult I pitied her."[4] Elder daughter, Gillian, did not hold the same view toward their mother, and Imogen's biography of Blyton contains a foreword by Gillian to the effect that her memories of childhood with Enid Blyton were mainly happy ones.
(The above is taken from Wikipedia, I cannot guarantee all is factually correct)

So, all hope was lost! I have decided to get hold of a copy of Imogen's biography, meanwhile, I shall simply remind myself that none of the above changes the talent Enid had, or the vast and wonderful array of stories she left us.


I have my own collection of Enid Blyton books and I often sell them in my shop. The latest two were purchased by a lady in South Africa, who said they were a treat for her grandchildren. What a treat indeed. Any child who can get lost in the world of Enid's characters, is a lucky child and if  you are anything like me, that does not just apply to children!

Thursday, 12 July 2012

A Light Hearted Look At Friday 13th...

According to

The number 13 has been unlucky for centuries. Some historians peg the superstition to the 13 people who attended the Last Supper (neither Jesus nor Judas came out of that one O.K.), but ancient Babylon's Code of Hammurabi omits the number 13 in its list of laws, so the superstition dates back to at least 1700 BC. Thirteen is so unlucky, in fact, that in 1881 an organization called the Thirteen Club attempted to improve the number's reputation. At the first meeting, the members (all 13 of them) walked under ladders to enter a room covered with spilled salt. The club lasted for many years and grew to more than 400 members, including five U.S. Presidents: Chester Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Benjamin Harrison, William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt. Despite the club's efforts, triskaidekaphobia (that's fear of the number 13) flourished; even today, most tall buildings don't have a 13th Floor.
The number's association with Friday, however, didn't take hold until the 20th century. In 1907, eccentric Boston stockbroker Thomas Lawson published a book called Friday the Thirteenth, which told of an evil businessman's attempt to crash the stock market on the unluckiest day of the month. Thanks to an extensive ad campaign, the book sold well: nearly 28,000 copies within the first week. In 1916 the book was turned into a feature-length silent film.
Wall Street's superstitions about Friday the 13th continued through 1925, when the New York Times noted that people "would no more buy or sell a share of stock today than they would walk under a ladder or kick a black cat out of their path." Some stock traders also blamed Black Monday — Oct. 19, 1987 — on the fact that three Fridays fell on the 13th that year. The Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute estimates that $700-$800 million dollars are lost every Friday the 13th because of people's refusal to travel, purchase major items or conduct business.
Then came Jason. In 1980, Paramount Pictures released Friday the 13th (tagline: "Fridays will never be the same again"), a slasher flick about a series of murders at a summer camp. Apparently Jason, born on Friday the 13th, chooses that date to take revenge on oversexed campers much like the ones who allowed him to drown in Crystal Lake. 

What tune could be more appropriate?  Dance Macabre performed by David Garrett 2002...

According to uk

The roots of Friday as an unlucky day lie in early Christianity; it was the day on which Christ was crucified.
In Britain there are regional variations. In Somerset, it is said that whoever turns a bed on a Friday turns ships at sea. In Cumberland, babies born on a Friday were laid on the family Bible.
In some areas, calling a doctor for the first time on a Friday is a certain omen of death. Cutting hair and nails on a Friday is a certain path to misfortune, and many couples will refrain from marrying on a Friday.
A Yorkshire legend has it that laudry should not be performed on a Friday. It is said that as Christ was walking to Calvary a woman washing outside her house derisively waved a wet garment at his face, leading him to curse her and all those who washed on that day in future.
Suspicion around the number 13 has Christian origins as well, reflecting the last supper where Christ dined with his twelve apostles.
The Romans also disliked the number, believing it to be a symbol of death, destruction and misfortune.
Houses often do not have a number 13, and many hotels, including the Carlton in London, miss out a thirteenth floor.
It is considered very unlucky for thirteen people to dine together, and the first to rise will reach serious misfortune - a superstition upheld by US President Roosevelt. He also refused to travel on Friday the 13th.
In the novel Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown cites the 14th century execution of Templar Grand Master Jacques de Molay, which took place on Friday the 13th. He cursed the Pope and the King of France, spreading misfortune. Some historians have claimed it was the day on which Eve bit the apple from the Tree of Knowledge, the great flood began and the builders of the Tower of Babel.

Did you know?
Paraskavedekatriaphobia or friggatriskaidekaphobia is a fear of Friday the 13th.
Triskaidekaphobia is a fear of the number 13.

Under a ladder
Umbrella open indoors
Black cat
Broken mirror
Friday 13th

According to

Did you know Austrian composer Arnold Schönberg suffered from severe triskaidekaphobia and may have even died from it?  It’s true! According to The Book of Lists author David WallechinskySchönberg suffered from a life-long obsession with the number 13.
Ponder these curious facts – not only was Schönberg born on September 13th, 1874, but he died in his 76th year (7+6=13) on July Friday the 13th, 1951 at precisely 11:47pm – 13 minutes before midnight!

If he was so unlucky, how did he become a successful composer and live to be 76?

According to Wikepedia
Superstition is a belief in a false conception of supernatural casualty: that one event leads to the cause of another without any physical process linking the two events.

According to

Do you believe in superstitions?

Good luck superstitionsThousands of people believe in superstitions although a lot of people think of them as nonsense and not based on reason. Where does the word “superstition” come from? The word superstition comes from two Latin words: “Super’’ and “Stare”. Super means above and stare means to stand.

 Do you know anyone who does not have a superstition? Most of the people, more or less, believe in them. Even though they deny superstitions, they can not help believing in them. They are superstitious. Unfortunately, we have hundreds of superstitions, all around the world. They change from culture to culture and they have a big influence in our lives.
There are two types of superstition. Good luck superstitions and bad luck superstitions.

On a more positive note!

Good luck superstitions

- If your right hand itches, you will earn money.
- If you find a four-leaf clover, you will have good luck.
- If you see a horseshoe which was lost, you will have good luck.
- If you throw rice on a new bride and groom, they will have so many children.
- If you dream about a white cat, you will have good luck.
- If you see a black cat which walks towards you, it brings you good luck.
- If your right ear itches, someone is speaking well of you.
- You can hang up garlic in your house for good luck.
- If you put a mirror just across the door, you will have good luck.
- If you put the sugar into the cup first, before the tea, you will have good luck.
- If you step on your shadow, it brings you good luck.
- If you catch a falling leaf on the first day of autumn, you will have good luck all winter.
- If you blow out all the candles on your birthday cake in one blow, you will get whatever you want.
- If the first butterfly you see in the year is white, it brings you good luck all year.
- If a girl drinks salty water then goes to sleep, she will see her future husband in her dream.

Vintage Vic does not believe in superstitions, but then, she was born on the 13th February!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Duane Bryers 'Hilda' goes on...

The post that I placed on this blog previously, about Hilda, the chubby gorgeous pin up girl, is my top rated post. I am not surprised. She is a work of pure genius! The genius of artist Duane Bryers.

Sadly, Duane Bryers died, in Tucson on May 30th this year. On a happier note, he had reached the grand old age of 100 years old, almost 101.

Duane invented Hilda in the mid 1950s and persuaded Brown & Biglow calendars to print her. They expected it to be a short run, because Hilda was chubby, however, she actually ran for 3 decades!

During an interview given to a few years ago, Duane said that he painted close to 250 pictures of Hilda, over 36 years. He listed one of his favourites as,

Hilda, sweeping the dust under the rug.

He said that he had kept around 60 of the original paintings himself.

Vintage Vic loves Hilda and often features her on the Vintage Vic facebook page.

Sometimes I manage to find vintage Hilda prints to sell. I only have one at the time of writing this article.

To see more details, or purchase this print

I am, however, waiting for a delivery of 4 vintage Hilda prints,

If you are interested to see or purchase any of the above 4 pictures, I shall be announcing their arrival on my website,

Duane Bryers will be remembered for many years to come, through his art.

Long live Hilda!