1922: FAIRYLAND IN CITY SHOPS. Christmas Toy Displays. GERMAN GOODS AGAIN TO THE FORE. With Christmas but a fortnight distant the firms that cater for the juvenile requirements of Aberdeen are now vieing with one another in the splendour of their displays of toys and such things as gladden the hearts of children. A walk along Union Street, and the other leading thoroughfares in the city, reveals the fact that every other shop window is a veritable child's fairyland. At all hours of the day large numbers of children are to be found feasting their eyes on the large selections of good things exhibited. So varied are the toys offered for sale that shoppers on entering any of these emporiums are bewildered.
Test of Salesmanship. Parents on being conducted over the showrooms experience great difficulty in making a final selection of the Christmas gift for their boys and girls. The result is that the shop assistants are called upon to exercise all their gifts of salesmanship, and help the perplexed shopper in deciding what form the gift is to take. Shopkeepers, anticipating this difficulty in coming to a decision on the part of their customers, have laid out their goods in sections for boys' and girls' toys. All the old familiar toys, such as the hobbyhorse, have reappeared, while many new delights, including miniature cinemas, and useful motor car models, have been placed on the market. Dolls, large and small, and representative of all nationalities, are the most outstanding of the goods on offer for girls, while the necessary adjuncts of prams and dolls' houses, tea sets, etc., are also being largely purchased. When it comes to deciding what form the boys' present should take, the parent is met with a bigger problem to solve. In this department of toyland a wonderful advance has been made in recent years. The old wooden form of toy has been placed in the background, and now the mechanical toy is all the craze. The most recent of this class of toy is the model aeroplane, which is in great demand, and the better classes of the model give a splendid illustration of the aeroplane flight. For the more serious-minded boy, and boys who have left their childhood days behind them, a keen trade is being done in tool-sets, while the sporting boy has many articles to choose from, these ranging from the usual football to a miniature golfing outfit.
German Toys a Feature. The feature of the Christmas toy show, apart from the wideness of the variety of articles on the market, is the remarkably low prices that are ruling. The sums asked for this year show a welcome reduction from those which ruled last year. Once more the German-made toys hold the market, so far as the cheaper class of toys are concerned. Practically without exception the dolls on sale are of German make and the prices are about half of those that prevailed last year. The field for mechanical toys, of the cheaper quality, is also an exclusively German one, but when a more solid model is required the foreign toy gives place to a home-made one. The leading shops in the city are catering for all classes of the community, and the number of small but attractive toys is amazing. Special attention is also being paid to the supply of dainty toys for hanging on Christmas trees, and the same wide variety also holds good in this department. Up to the present, the trade has been brisk, but, despite this fact, the shopkeepers do not anticipate that their returns will be anything like equal to those last year on account of the vastly reduced prices of the goods.
Source : Aberdeen Press and Journal Tuesday December 12th, 1922