Shin Pads and Toilet Paper

Yesterday a friend discovered this 1976 Eaton’s catalog in the Winnipeg Thrift Store where we both work as volunteers. 1976 was the last year Eaton’s published a catalog. They published the first one in 1884.

My Mom and her sisters with their dolls from the Eaton’s catalogue in the late 1920s.

I remember my Mom telling me how in the 1920s she and her sisters combed through the Eatons catalogue picking out dolls they hoped to receive. Especially coveted was the Eaton’s Beauty Doll.

My sister and I with our dolls from the Eaton’s Christmas catalogue

My sister and I did the same thing in the 1950s looking through the Eatons catalogue for dolls and other toys we wanted for Christmas.

My mother always sewed my dresses but for my first day of school in 1958 she let me order a dress from the catalogue.

My husband in the Eaton’s Centre in Toronto

Once when we were touring the Eatons Centre in Toronto a guide told us that decades ago Canadians had used the Eatons Catalogue for three purposes besides finding things they would like to order.

Hockey on the pond by Richard Brodeur

Apparently when kids couldn’t afford shin pads for playing hockey they used catalogues instead strapped to their legs with canning jar rings.

In this painting done by William Kurelek in 1976, we see the Eaton’s catalogue hanging on the wall of the outhouse

Old catalogues were also used instead of toilet paper in outhouses before bathrooms were common in homes.

Page of bathing suits in the 1949 Eatons catalogue

And before the advent of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition or Playboy magazine, the lingerie or swimsuit section of the Eatons catalogue was popular alternate viewing. 

Other posts………

Rubbing Mr Eaton’s Foot

Happy Halloween

I Live in a Piece of Winnipeg History


Filed under Canada

3 responses to “Shin Pads and Toilet Paper

  1. Ruth Goudreau

    I have one of these and would be interested to know what the Thrift Store priced it at because I too work for a Thrift store here in Edmonton and would consider donating mine to the Thrift Store.


  2. Just love those little girls and their dolls. Priceless.


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