Thursday, June 30, 2022

We Made Some Ink! Washingtonian Magazine July 2022

Being residents of the greater DMV (that's DC, Maryland, Virginia for those not in the know), the Washingtonian is our version of New York Magazine or Los Angeles Magazine, with features on local interest, published monthly.  And this month has a one-page feature on the Alice collection, only 6 years in the making!  Pictures below of the cover and our single page, and then an annotated page.

In the photo below, the numbered its are:
  1. Regal Mad Hatter Teapot
  2. Gund Queen of Hearts Vinylite Stuffed Toy
  3. Regal White Rabbit Creamer
  4. Zaccagnini (Italy) Cheshire Cat Figure
  5. Disneyland White Rabbit Press/VIP Gift from 1984 Attraction Re-Opening
  6. Neevel Doll Wardrobe Case
  7. Lars (Italy) Bill the Lizard Stuffed Toy
  8. 1970s Disneyland Child's Sunglasses
  9. National Leather Mfg Co Schoolbag
  10. Madame Alexander Doll
  11. Larceram (France) Lamp
  12. Chad Valley (England) Nursery Play-Toy Tin Stacking Blocks
  13. Unknown Tweedledee/dum String Holder (likely unlicensed)
  14. Enesco Head Vase
  15. Sni-Dor (Canada) Record Player
  16. Goebel (Germany) Dodo Smoker Ashtray
  17. Unknown (England) Meal Time Dish Set
  18. Hassenfeld Bros (Hasbro) Nurse Kit
  19. Linemar Mad Hatter's Sky-View Taxi Tin Friction Toy
  20. US Time Watch in Teacup Box

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Original Release Australian Press Book

Otherwise known in the US as campaign book, this press book contains lots of sample articles, ad mats, posters, and merchandise specific to the Australian market.  Super cool.  

The cover is based on the two-page ad that appeared in Look magazine here in the US, which was also issued as a promotional poster.  The same is true for this cover on the press book, it too was issued as a promotional poster.  

Both the press book cover and poster have slightly colors from the US, not sure if it is the printing method, or just similar fading over time, but they are decidedly more pink than the US versions.

One interesting this about this press book, and most Australian press books, is they way they are constructed.  It is multiple tabloid size sheets stapled together at the right edge, and folded in the center to look like a book or magazine - but since it is stapled at the edge, you have to unfold it before you can open it.

Perhaps the coolest part of the press book is the merchandise.  Many items are pictured, some of which have been posted about in years past here on the blog, but several I have never seen before nor even heard about.  Tea set anyone?  Yes please, I'll take ten!  And that boxed notepaper, to die for.  And not one, but two paint books!  Also mentioned but not pictured are an Alice doll and White Rabbit doll exclusive to the Australian market.  Wow.

And let us not forget the move posters, four of which are pictured.  Well, three posters and a glass slide.  We have all heard of the Australian daybill of course, posted about here, but I've never even heard of a 1-sheeter or 3-sheeter (presumably very similar to an american one-sheet and three-sheet).  And the glass slide was discovered not too long ago and posted here.


While stereographic (3-D) photography dates back nearly 200 years, it wasn’t until the introduction of Tru-Vue that the format became more streamlined and compact, as it utilized film rather than prints to create the stereo view.  Throughout the 1940s and 1950s subjects were primarily scenes of a travel-related or educational nature, although other scenes based on popular comic strips and comic books were available too such as Blondie, Buck Rogers, and Captain Marvel.  As  they continued to add more subjects geared towards children, titles expanded to include Disney, Howdy Doody, Red Ryder, and other western subjects.

In 1950 Tru-View began producing color films for the first time, partly in response to Sawyer’s competing View-Master product, which had been in color since its 1938 introduction.  The color process selected by Tru-Vue was Ansco, which at the time was more economical than Kodak and provided the needed color reproduction demanded by Ford Motor Company for its promotional film strips.  However Ansco color is not very stable and most films turned magenta over the years, the exception sometimes being cartoon subjects.

Tru-Vue acquired its Disney license in 1950 and held it through 1956.  At the time Tru-Vue was in the process of transitioning from black & white to color, so titles would sometimes appear in both formats. 

The Alice films were sold during the original release of the film in 1951, during not only the transition from black and white to color, but also from Tru-Vue’s Rock Island plant to Sawyer’s Beaverton plant.  When one compares the product information contained in the Character Merchandise Division catalog with the actual products themselves, you can see the transition as the company is list in Rock Island in promotional material but Beaverton on product packaging.  One can only imagine the the logistical nightmare of manufacturing, marketing, and selling Alice and all the other products during this time.

The black & white Film (B 51) was issued with the standard red and white box, the black and white film consists of ten scenes, down from the original 14 scenes in the pre-color days.  The films are a little difficult to look at these days, as the intervening 70+ years tightly wound in their little boxes makes them act like watch springs, recoiling violently with the slightest misstep in handling them.

The color film (X 51) was issued in the standard red, yellow, and blue box, the color film consists of the standard nine scenes.  

Both the black & white and color sets consist of the four sequentially numbered Disney films:  Alice in Wonderland (51), Bambi (52), Donald Duck (53), and Mickey Mouse (54) in an illustrated box featuring Donald Duck holding a Tru-Vue viewer.