Tag Archives: eatons christmas

Remember the Regal Catalogue?



When I was setting up the Eaton’s Christmas Catalogue room display at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum I was asking Jennifer Fenwick Irwin if she remembered the Regal Catalogue. I can remember my Grandmother and neighbours buying boxes of cards and gift wrap. It seemed every card you got on a special occasion was from the Regal catalogue.

I had no idea Regal was still around until I walked in to the The Artisan Loft & General Store in Smiths Falls today. Owner Cheryl told me there are only 3 people still in the area that sell Regal. According to their site Regal has been around since 1928. William McCartney decided he wanted to manufacture his own greeting cards and with the support of a woman who would later become his wife the card and gift wrapping business began.



In the 40s the Canadian school system got involved using Regal as a source for fundraisers and that is probably the first place I saw a Regal Catalogue in the 50s. I remember the smelly erasers and especially the 100 pairs of earrings. Then there were those gadgets- and they seemed to be made exclusively for them as you couldn’t find them anywhere else except the Regal Catalogue.


The Regal warehouse is not located in every major town like it used to be. Their main warehouse is now in Barrie, Ontario, but Regal lives on. Its nice to see tradition and nostalgia still lives on in that little catalogue. Every season has a memory just like the Regal catalogue. The fact that it is still around means I don’t have to trade my tomorrow for a single yesterday.

If you are driving through Smiths Falls stop in and say Hi to Cheryl at her store. Those Regal catalogues are right by the cash register. Who knew? Don’t forget the Museum open house this Saturday and bring the kids.
The Artisan Loft & General Store
7 Russell St W, (Davidson Business Courtyard)
Smiths Falls, Ontario.

I Found My Childhood in the Eaton’s Christmas Catalogue




Come see the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum’s new Winter Display beginning December 8th  called “Forever Young” with an entire room dedicated to an Eaton’s Catalogue Christmas.


How about a pit stop during the Carleton Place House Tour? The Ginger Cafe will be open and also the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum– Get to see the new exhibit at the Museum before anyone else! ONLY FOR TICKET HOLDERS DECEMBER 5 TH AND 6TH!

The first Eaton’s catalogue was distributed in the fall of 1884 at the annual Industrial Exhibition, precursor to the Canadian National Exhibition. At first orders were filled by mail-order “shoppers” who lined up to be served with other customers at Eaton’s ever-expanding Yonge Street store.


Records of the mail-order department, held at the Archives of Ontario, reveal the rise and fall of the mail-order industry in Canada. The Eaton’s catalogue was mailed into the hearts, the memory and even the literature of Canadians. In Roch Carrier’s “The Hockey Sweater”, the despised Toronto Maple Leaf’s sweater was ordered from the Eaton’s catalogue.


In Lucy Maud Montgomery’s “Anne’s House of Dreams” Anne and Mrs. Rachel argued over the propriety of the Eaton’s catalogue. Catalogues were later printed in Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal and Moncton, and each catered to the special needs of its region.

Catalogue pages were used as readers in many classrooms….. and eventually, the catalogue also found its way into many outhouses. Francophone shoppers were first encouraged to write their orders in French in 1902; a French catalogue first appeared in 1928.


The last Eaton’s catalogue was issued for Spring-Summer 1976.

The Archives of Ontario holds the most complete set of Eaton’s catalogues, including Christmas catalogues and Specialty Catlogues.– Archives of Ontario


Come see the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum’s new Winter Display beginning December 12th  called “Forever Young” with an entire room dedicated to an Eaton’s Catalogue Christmas.

The Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum is all decked out for Christmas! We’ve dressed our mannequins in vintage furs made right here in Carleton Place at McFadden’s Furs. We’ve cozied up our exhibit room with warm wool blankets woven locally at the Bates and Innes and the McDonald Woolen Mills. The scent of fresh baking is in the air by the Findlay Oval!

Plan to visit the Museum during our Christmas House on December 12th for hot apple cider and some home baked Christmas cookies. Join in carol singing with members of the Town Singers and then tour our winter exhibition “Forever Young – Staying Warm in a Carleton Place Winter”. Learn about how local kids stayed warm in winter… this exhibit opens December 12 and runs through March 28th 2016.

We are located at 267 Edmund Street at the corner of George Street. Our heritage designated building was built in 1872 as the original Town Hall, and was used as Victoria School until 1968. We are wheelchair accessible at the rear, and have public washroom facilities..