Thursday, 9 January 2014

Is this the Ideal Home for Snow White?

Further details and price here

These recently discovered postcards stirred my curiosity. Both show the interior of the Seven Dwarfs cottage, but these are 'real photo postcards' of an actual place. The information on the back of each card is exactly the same; the House of the Seven Dwarfs as built at Olympia, 1938 by Richard Costain from the Walt Disney drawings in the film "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. To my mind, Olympia in 1938 could mean only one thing – The Ideal Home Exhibition. I spent many a happy time there as a child in the 1950s and as a newly married woman in the 1970s.  

For those of you not familiar with the show... it was established in 1908 by the Daily Mail newspaper. Held at the Olympia exhibition complex in London, the first show attracted 160,000 visitors.  Back in 1908 the vast majority of people in Britain lived in rented accommodation, but mass production methods were bringing the dream of owning your own home closer.  The Ideal Home Exhibition was an instant hit with visitors and three more shows were organised before the First World War. After the war, the popularity of the event increased and by the 1930s, most women visiting the exhibition were making do with no more than the help of a ‘daily’. This resulted in a boom for manufacturers introducing an array of gadgets and new inventions. Things we now take for granted like the vacuum cleaner and the electric kettle all made their debut at the show. By 1936, the drive towards labour-saving was aimed at the family kitchen, with an avalanche of potato peelers, stainless steel sinks and single-height work surfaces. This and the building of even bigger and better houses within the exhibition continue to this day, although the event is now held at Earls Court and has been renamed The Ideal Home Show.  



via


These clippings are taken from an advertisement for the 1938 Ideal Home Exhibition. The Dwarfs cottage is listed as one of the attractions.

For those interested in Snow White, I've just added a lovely book to my website. It is a retelling of the classic tale by Cynthia Rylant with paintings by Gustaf Tenggren taken from Walt Disney's animated film.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is now sold, thank you for your interest
If we have other Snow White or Disney items you will find them here

It is when we are most lost that we sometimes find our truest friends. Cynthia Rylant, Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

22 comments:

  1. My naughty mother, went to the Ideal Home Exhibition regularly in the sixties. My mother used to give me a note to take into school at the beginning of the week giving some excuse that she was away for the day, and as there wasn't anyone to look after me so she had to take me with her, and I would have a day off and we would go to the Ideal Home Exhibition mid-week. Well no one said anything about having days off school in the 60's!
    Julie xxxxxxxxxxxx

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    1. Hello Julie, thinking about it, my parents must have been taking me out of school too. As you say I don’t think they worried much about schooling back then! Still a day out and a visit to the exhibition was probably an education in itself. Thanks for your visit xx

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  2. How fun it would have been to see that cottage! :-)

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    1. Yes, I wish it was there during one of my visits! Thanks for leaving a comment.

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    1. Absolutely! Thanks for your visit Darlene.

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  4. What beautiful postcards and so much fun that they are based on something real! The Ideal Home Exhibition sounds like a fascinating time! Thanks for sharing. :)

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    1. Hi Stephanie, I had fun finding out about them, and it brought back lots of happy memories.Thanks for calling in.

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  5. Oh how I love the photos of that ACTUAL PLACE! To think that there are storybook cottages that exist as such! I have a beautiful rendition of Snow White that inspired my husband to make our outdoor shutters. No matter who the artist, I think that the original idea of the European-inspired cottage is where Snow White feels most at home. HI BARBARA! Anita

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    1. She does look at home, but I’m not sure how comfortable it would be for a long stay. The trouble is everything is so little, and she looks rather large! Thank you for your visit Anita, it is always a pleasure to hear from you. xx

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  6. I would have loved to visit the Ideal Home Exhibition back then, the images on those postacrds are gorgeous.

    I know the exhibition is still in existence as the 'Ideal Home Show', I wonder what it would be like now.

    Have a wonderful weekend Barbara x

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    1. Hi Yvonne, I haven’t been for years, but I think some of the magic might be gone. It was an Aladdin’s cave of the weird and wonderful when I was a little girl, but it feels rather more functional now. Thanks for your good wishes, Barbara

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  7. You know when you read a book you know it is based on someone they have met or somewhere they have visited yet you would never think to consider it for this. I utterly love the postcards, snow white was my mothers favourite disney movie. Maybe time to watch it again.

    Lainy http://www.alwaysreading.net

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    1. Hi Lainy, I’m so pleased you enjoyed the post and the postcards! Thanks for calling in and leaving a comment. Barbara x

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    1. Hi Linda, it’s certainly very quaint. Thanks very much for your comment. Barbara.

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  9. Las fotografĂ­as son geniales. Ha estado un regalo el visitar tu bloc, te invito visitar el mio y compartamos nuestros blogs y si te gusta espero que te hagas seguidor.
    Elracodeldetall.blogspot.com

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    1. Hello there, thank you for your kind words, I’m very pleased you like my blog, and I will be delighted if you decide to follow.
      I very much enjoyed my visit to your blog, Best wishes, Barbara.

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  10. Oh very cool - I had never heard of this before.

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    1. I can honestly say I learn something new every time I browse the Internet. It’s a great and wonderful invention. Thanks so much for calling in.

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  11. I would never have known about The Ideal Home Exhibition if it wasn't for this post, Barbara. Would have liked to attend the shows on 'The City of Glass' and 'Alfredo and His Orchestra.' I'm glad you found a copy of Snow White by Cynthia Rylant, and very relieved to know stone-throwing wasn't allowed in the glass house.

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    1. Hello Claudine, the Ideal Home still goes on to this day, but it has lost some of its magic (to me at least). It really was a wonderful place to visit when I was little. There were so many wondrous new things to see and marvel at back then! It’s never a wise idea to throw stones in glass houses! Thanks for your visits.

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara xx

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