70’s and 80’s kids will remember with spectacular glee the huge Christmas catalogue Wishbooks sent to their houses right around this time of year from Sears and Roebuck and J.C. Penney’s with Montgomery Ward later getting in on the act.
Wishbooks were a kid’s own toy Encyclopedia Brittanica. Somehow Sear’s and Penney’s had made contact with the jolly old elf himself and snuck top secret agents into the North Pole Workshop to bring back detailed info on all of the offerings that could possibly be gotten if on the Nice List. So detailed was the info that you could view anything from size (sorry Suzy, if you hadn’t snuck those extra Twinkies in your CBK lunchbox all year you might have fit into that tutu on page 126 but the elves only sew them up to a 14) to colour to open market price. Wait a minute, Santa’s selling toys? Is that why those starving kids across the world don’t get toys- cos they’re naughty and can’t afford to buy them from Santa? Then again, I bet it’s not cheap to fuel that sleigh. Moving on.
My parents got around explaining this by telling me that Santa could only give so many toys at a time to kids around the world ad the rest they had to buy from him so when I made my list from the WishBook I was given a pricepoint that I could for a few tings (like, say $10) and then one bigger thing (maybe $40). Let’s just say I went through way more Eagle brand school tablets making lists than any environmental group would ever be comfortable with!
Luckily enough for Nostalgia some awesome people have scanned old WishBooks in and I am SO SO SO excited those are up for viewing on Flikr- props to Wishbook for scanning all of these awesome Wishbooks over the years, t’s a definite can’t miss photostream!!!
Montgomery Ward Christmas Catalogue 1980
Sears Wish Book 1980
Montgomery Ward Christmas Catalogue 1981
JC Penney Wish Book 1982
Sears Wish Book 1982
Sears Wish Book 1983
Montgomery Ward Christmas Catalogue 1983
Montgomery Ward Christmas Catalogue 1984
Sears Wish Book 1984
Sears Wish Book 1985
Sears Wish Book 1986
Toys R Us Wish Book 1986
Sears Wish Book 1987
JC Penney Wish Book 1987
Sears Wish Book 1988
Sears Wish Book 1989
JC Penney Wish Book 1990
For die-hard WishBook fans there is supposedly an online version at Sears still ongoing since 2009 at www.sears.com/wishbook but it’s basically a regular shopping page. How am I supposed to tear the pages out with my items circled and put this in the envelope with my letter to santa???