« go back to the store

I Heart XMAS with Heather Steele

Welcome to the I Heart XMAS Q&A, where Retro Festive asks notable Canadians about their own Christmas traditions and what they would like to find under the tree!

Heather Steele
Global Winnipeg Anchor

Heather Steele



What is your favourite Christmas movie or TV special?
Honestly, my husband and I still find ourselves watching Christmas Vacation year after year. It’s one of those movies you know all the words to, and yet I find myself watching it when it starts airing each season. It’s cheesy and ridiculous, but something about it makes me want to run out and buy eggnog and start decorating the house.

Does your family have a special or quirky Christmas tradition?
Hmmm…is eating until you can’t breathe quirky? No? Good. My Ukrainian mom insists on cooking as though 200 people are attending Christmas each year, and somehow we get through all the food. Eventually.

 Which do you prefer: to give or receive?
I get very excited to give when I’ve found the perfect give for someone. I actually struggle to keep it a secret, just want to blurt it out.

Ugly Christmas Sweaters: Not a Chance – or – The Uglier the Better?
The first few years when Ugly Christmas sweaters became a “thing”, we went to a bunch of ugly Christmas sweater parties and kept trying to out-do the last one. I think we’ve peaked, so we’re done.

What are some events that make you feel jolly?
I recently raced with a Global team in the JDRF Ride for Diabetes research.

Heather Steele

Global just completed their Knickers and Kickers event where we raised socks and underwear for our Siloam Mission here in Winnipeg . We collected from viewers at St. Vital Mall – it was awesome.

A group of us are also making a wreath to raffle off for Children’s Rehabilitation Foundation. So the top of my desk has been overtaken by ribbon and scissors. So we’re always keeping busy!



Black Friday through Cyber Monday Savings!


Black Friday Black Santa 2015

RetroFestive is pleased to offer the following Black Friday Deals! Offers valid from Black Friday through to the end-of-day on Cyber Monday!  (Or while supplies last!)

  • Deals are available online or in our Oakville store… but not at our Toronto Christmas Market kiosk locations.
  • Not applicable on orders placed prior to Black Friday.

20% Off All Ornaments and Stockings*

*Must use coupon code BLACKCYBER at checkout to obtain 20% discount on ornaments and stockings. Does not apply to Personalized ornaments.

$5 Off All Ugly Christmas Sweaters*

*No coupon code needed to save $5 on Ugly Christmas Sweaters. The sale price of the sweaters is already shown online.


Men’s Toronto Maple Leafs Ugly Sweaters – Sale Price = $49.99!

Men’s Chicago Blackhawks Ugly Sweaters – Sale Price = $49.99!

Maple Leafs (1)

 Black Santa Figure with Naughty List – Sale Price = $9.99!

Web Ready Nov 2015  Black Santa


I Heart XMAS with Gord Gillies

Welcome to the I Heart XMAS Q&A, where Retro Festive asks notable Canadians about their own Christmas traditions and what they would like to find under the tree!

Gord GilliesGord Gillies,
Global Calgary Anchor

What is your favourite Christmas movie or TV special? 

My all time favorite Christmas movie is “A Christmas Story”.


Does your family have a special or quirky Christmas tradition?
On Christmas Eve we always have Macaroni and cheese. I don’t know why.

Which do you prefer: to give or receive?  

OMG of course it’s giving! Is there anything more exciting than watching a child open a gift?

Which Peanuts character do you think your friends and family would say reminds them of you?
Snoopy. It doesn’t take much for me to break out into a ‘happy dance’.

Ugly Christmas Sweaters: Not a Chance – or – The Uglier the Better?
I prefer a lampshade.

What do you want Santa to bring you this year?
Hello? Go back to question #1.  I’m still dreaming of a Red Ryder BB rifle.


On Thursday, December 3, 2015 Gord will be the MC for the Candy Cane Gala, a magical fundraiser for the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation.

On Saturday, December 5, 2015 Gord and his son Liam will be volunteering at Zoolights at the Calgary Zoo!


Christmas Villains Who Give Us the Creeps

Christmas movies always begin nicely. The tree is trimmed, the gifts are wrapped, the turkey is in the oven, the quirky family has arrived, and the magic of the holidays is in the air – but there is one Christmas villain who must turn this wonderful season into a problem!

This December there will be a new film released that focuses on the ultimate Christmas villain – Krampus.

Krampus, starring Adam Scott from Parks and Recreation, Allison Tolman from Fargo, and Toni Collett from United States of Tara, is a live action horror/dark comedy about a modern dysfunctional family at Christmas, and a visit from the horned, ancient monster of European folklore, who punishes naughty children.

In honour of Krampus‘ arrival, we have compiled a list of Christmas villains who give us the creeps!

Scut Farkus – A Christmas Story
Scut Farkus staring out at us with his yellow eyes. He had yellow eyes! So, help me, God! Yellow eyes!”

Christmas villain

Scut Farkus, played by Canadian Zack Ward, was the local bully for Ralphie Parker and the gang in A Christmas Story, but in real life he raises money for anti-bullying programs.


The Grinch – Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
Your soul is an appalling dump-heap, overflowing with the most disgraceful assortment of rubbish imaginable, mangled up in tangled up knots!”

Christmas villain







They wrote a whole song describing how bad this guy was. But the power of a Christmas song also made his heart grow three sizes!


Scrooge – A Christmas Carol
Christmas is a very busy time for us, Mr. Cratchit. People preparing feasts, giving parties, spending the mortgage money on frivolities. One might say that December is the foreclosure season. Harvest time for the money-lenders.”

Christmas villain

Since his creation in 1843 by Charles Dickens, the cruel stinginess of Ebenezer Scrooge has been portrayed by Michael Caine, Tim Curry, Alastair Sim, Patrick Stewart, and Scrooge McDuck in countless plays, TV shows and movies. Why has this story been told so many times, in so many ways? Perhaps we all hope to redeem ourselves for past mistakes, just as Scrooge does after seeing the error of his ways.


Heat Miser and Snow Miser – Year Without a Santa Claus
“Friends call me Snow Miser, whatever I touch turns to snow in my clutch. I’m too much.”
“They call me Heat Miser. Whatever I touch starts to melt in my clutch. I’m too much.”

Christmas villains

The Miser Brothers are not the worst of the Christmas villains, but their refusal to get along and work together really slows Mrs Claus down on her mission to save Christmas.


Harry F. Potter – It’s a Wonderful Life
George, I am an old man, and most people hate me. But I don’t like them either so that makes it all even.”

Christmas villain

Mr Potter might be the most frustrating Christmas villain. He is pure evil and treats people terribly, but he never gets what is coming to him. He makes no attempt to become a better person, and George Bailey receives no chance at revenge!

Thankfully the cast of Saturday Night Live found the alternative ending of It’s a Wonderful Life, which seals Potter’s fate!


Professor Hinkle – Frosty the Snowman
We evil magicians have to make a living, too!

Christmas villains








Professor Hinkle was just about the worst magician in the world, and he was pretty bad at being a villain too. He did try to ruin some pretty fantastic Christmas magic by stealing his hat from Frosty the Snowman and the children, but he was easily thwarted with the help of the Hocus the rabbit. I wonder how long it took him to write “I am very sorry for what I did to Frosty” a hundred zillion times.


Wet Bandits – Home Alone
I think we’re getting scammed by a kindergartener.

Christmas villains

Marv and Harry were small time thieves who thought they would get a big payoff scamming houses during the holidays. Eight year-old Kevin McCallister prevented that with a painful obstacle course. Just when you thought The Wet Bandits couldn’t get any worse, they try to rob a toy store of their charitable work during Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Thankfully Kevin is there to once again show them what’s what at Christmas!

If you have a Christmas villain in your life, you know what to get them:
Christmas villains


Christmas Music Before December: Yay or Nay?

We are just shy of one month away from Christmas day, and much like the customary holiday traditions (like decorating the home with trees and lights), yuletide carols are beginning to take flight.

giphy (13)

Whether or not you have begun to bring those dusty decorations out of the crawl space, you have most likely heard a Christmas song, or two, while at the mall or listening to the radio.giphy (12)

In fact, radio stations like 96.1 FM (now called WMSX), started playing Christmas music the day after Halloween, while others do hold out until after American Thanksgiving. However, this doesn’t stop shopping malls from blasting that classic Mariah Carey head bopper throughout the festively decorated stores.

giphy (11)
History has lead us to the conclusion that people have some very mixed reactions to Christmas music playing well before December.

Though, most of the festive patrons, do enjoy a jovial jingle echoing through the speakers, whether they are simply window shopping, or getting a head start on their Christmas lists; there are some scrooges out there that want nothing to do with the radio’s festive jams.

giphy (10)

We’ve narrowed down the 7 Most Typical Reactions to Christmas Tunes, much before the anticipated Holiday, and we are certain that you, or someone you know, will fit perfectly into one of the tiers.

1. The Antsy Nancy

giphy (1)

We all know someone like this, the impatient spirited soul. Their Halloween costume barely hits the laundry room floor, before they start blasting ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ wherever they go. This individual is usually encouraging others to get into the Christmas Spirit before the pumpkins leave their doorstep. Halloween candy, quickly turns into Candy Canes and if you look hard enough, they probably have a countdown started somewhere in the house. There is nothing wrong with this trait, in fact, they are a merchandisers dream. With the Christmas spirit already embedded into the consumer’s brain by November 1st, it would fit the bill for the festive prospect to start shop, shop, shopping away.

2. The Humble Hummer 

This person is readily influenced by Antsy Nancy’s in-your-face Christmas Spirit. Someone who, didn’t quite expect to get their Christmas Groove on until the wintery forecast, but isn’t quite bothered by the festiveness surrounding them. They’re not exactly ones to crank the Michael Bublé Christmas playlists while digesting Thanksgiving Dinner, but if a song or two just…happened to start *magically* playing, it’s not like they would change the station. I mean… if the Santa hat fits….

3. The Silent Knight
giphy (4)
Whether this person doesn’t celebrate Christmas, or doesn’t care much for the kitschy traditions surrounding the holiday, not much of a stress is given when the topic of Christmas Music is buzzing. Not one to complain, but not known to rejoice, either; this party is remaining neutral to avoid any holiday backlash or prolonged festive conversation.

4. The Bothered Busybody

giphy (3)
The ‘Evil Twin’ to the Antsy Nancy. These two often go head to head when deciding what station to listen to when driving in the car. It’s not that this person is exactly the Grinch, in fact, they may not even hate Christmas at all. It may be the over commercialization of Christmas, or the fact that there are only so many versions of ‘Holly Jolly Christmas’ one can handle. Either way, the level of annoyance Christmas music can reach for someone not-so into the theatrical harmonies is high.

5. The Surrendering Sweetheart

giphy (5)
This is typically a couple situation. Your significant other insists on blasting the Glee Christmas Discography, and you have surrendered yourself to play along, in hopes that you’ll be allowed to blare your music during all other months of the year.  You will bite your tongue if the constant renditions of ‘Baby it’s Cold Outside’ bring in some warm cuddling on the couch, even if the song does seem rather violating and forceful (say, what was in that drink, Dean Martin?).

6. Year Round Elf

This jovial soul does not give a fruitcake about what you say. They will be listening to Charlie Brown Christmas all year long,  no matter the occasion. Christmas Spirit never leaves this jolly, happy soul, and there is no reason it ever should. Christmas music can be great for exercising, relaxing and putting yourself in a great mood. This person is not be confused with the Antsy Nancy, whose anticipation grows greater as the end of the year is near; this individual is pumped about Christmas ALL.THE.TIME. The countdown for Christmas starts on boxing day, and it never ends.

7. And Finally,  Michael Bublé

giphy (7)


giphy (6)

giphy (8)

Nothing beats Michael Bublé’s love for the holiday. This man does Christmas right. Not even Santa Claus, himself, enjoys the holidays this much. His love for the festive holiday is so great, that he stands alone in this category.


One can only dream of being this jolly.


While you may know right away which category you fit into, you might need some extra help. To aid you in your quest for the appropriate title, enjoy this specially made playlist, with the greatest Christmas songs of the century (at least, in our opinion).

Take a listen, and have a happy, happy holiday season rocking out!