Thursday, December 22, 2011

Something's Fishy.....

The copyright on this label is 1936 - I LOVE that!

Who likes fish and/or seafood?  I do.  In fact, I love it.  This is a complete 180 from my opinion about ten years ago.

If you would've told me back as late as 2001 that I would someday enjoy a nice orange Roughy I would've said you were nuts.  I despised fish and wouldn't go anywhere near it.  Then, at some point (I can't even remember when or where), I tried salmon.  I was immediately hooked, and it turned out to be my fish and seafood gateway drug.  :D

One of my favorite places in Fondy -
Fond du Lac Seafood Co.!  I made the
frame out of old tuna labels.  :D
As a kid, the only experience my sister Jen and I had with fish was the same for most kids - fish sticks.  They were okay, I guess, but certainly not my favorite.  I've mentioned this a lot this week for various reasons, but again - the predominantly Catholic region where I lived played a role here too.  For the uninitiated, Catholics (at least up until the Eighties - they may have gotten more lax on the issue) can't eat meat on Fridays.  So if we took hot lunch at school, we'd always get stuck with tuna casserole (STILL can't eat that) or fish sticks.  I'm going to get colloquial here for a second, but if youse went out on a Friday night in Green Bay of course you had da fish fry.  Cripes, you get a good piece a whitefish er perch er sump-in' - dat's how ya celebrate da weekend.  Oh-a, dat and a coupla brewskis.  Cripes n' so.  

I've spoken of my love of vintage labels before, but I haven't focused solely on the seafood and fish labels that I love so much.  They combine my favorite things:  supermarket brand logos, beautiful lithography, fantastic mid-century (or earlier) design and wild color combinations.  I've said it before and I'll say it again - I'll take a good illustration over a photo any day, especially if it's an illustration of seafood that makes it appear monstrous. The sardines in the uppermost King Solomon label not only look inedible, they look like they're out of "Saw II".  And I LOVE it.

I have a problem, too - I can't stop buying them.  I just purchased more a couple of weeks ago.  I'll bet I have close to fifty.  There's got to be a reason I'm amassing so many, art-wise - I just don't know the reason yet.  But they're so inexpensive, I don't feel guilty. :D

And speaking of art-wise, here are a few collages I've made with them.  Fish are one of my favorite subjects to collage and these labels add so much!


  1. Just wanted to say how much I enjoy your blog. It inspires me to create and sell. I used to have a small antique shop specializing in advertising items and have lots of paper and smells. You will be the first to know when I start selling. Thanks again for sharing.

  2. Oh, thank you Bev! That is so very lovely of you to say! I can't tell you how much that means to me. :D It's so nice to find like-minded souls who love this "stuff" as much as I - and I look forward to receiving word of your return to selling! :D
    Happy Holidays, Bev! - Mel
    P.S. LOVE the "smells"! :D

  3. I just bought a few "Victor Renee Sardines" labels from OSO ( The style is so great! Fun images and lettering to use in so many different ways.

  4. Mel, that was supposed to be smalls! Heehee! I need to proofread. Merry Christmas.

  5. Amy, I have (and LOVE!) that label, too! It is so fun - you're right! :D

    Bev - that makes more sense. :D But our paper does indeed have a lovely "old" scent, so I like that too. :D

  6. Susan - I do love them. I just love the fact that they even still exist! :D