Vintage Magazine Advertisements

Living in Rozelle I'm lucky to have one of the best weekend markets in Sydney, on my front door step. Stuffed full of all kinds of bric-a-brac, from old LPs through to gas masks, this place is the perfect example of how one man's junk is another man's treasure. What I considered treasure were a stash of old magazines from the 50s and 60s, mainly 'New Idea' for also some 'Woman's Day' and 'Australian Woman's Weekly'.

Aside from the articles which I adore to read (fashion, cookery and interiors advice from the 50s and 60s, pure gold, and a blog for another day when I get around to scanning some of the articles), I also loved the ads inside the pages. The big full page colour ads are fantastic for framing and injecting some colour into the kitchen (I've some I'll be putting on Etsy soon!). But my favourite by far are the small black and white sidebar ads and classified style advertisements dotted throughout.

With headlines like 'STOP FAT LEGS FAST!' my only regret is I won't ever get to see the product up close. The perfect way to share these fab ads is through some decoupage.

Breaking vintage magazines and books for something like decoupage can be considered controversal, but in my opinion better break an old magazine and upcycle it giving it a new lease of life, rather than let it rot away with nobody to see it. If you do despise breaking a publication, there is a way around it and that is photocopying the pages (though I do suggest you use an off white paper when photocopying to give the pages that aged look).

I decided to try the project out on a tablemat initially.  Just for the record, I'm not obsessed with tablemats, I simply had some old ones lying about - you could do anything really, big or small, but I suggest trying it out with something small to begin with in order to make sure you've got the hang of it.

I simply cut the ads I liked and then trialed laying them out to cover the tablemat to find a 'pattern' which suited. You'll have to overlap the paper so that is why it is a good idea to lie out the ads in the first instance. Once you've got an idea where everything is to go, paint some PVC glue on the tablemat, and press down the paper (making sure you have no air bubbles - gently use the ruler to smooth down the paper if necessary but be careful not to tear). Then lightly paint over the top with more PVC.

Let the glue dry completely for two days and then use a sealer (you'll find them in Spotlight in Australia or Hobbycraft in the UK) to ensure that the mat is protected. It can seem pointless to do this step, you'll mat will look lovely, why bother, but you really do need to do this, else when you put a warm plate down on it it will end up melting the glue! How do I know this - because I found out the hard way, during a dinner party. Embarrassing to say the least.

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