Category Archives: Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Dorset Fabrics, 1947

The sun shines on Mr. and Mrs… who have carbon-copy tastes about vacations, about fabrics to live in.  They like the utterly young firm feel of Whaler, that good gabardine from Dorset…they like the way this playmate to all America holds its shape through sports and travel. Whaler is a whale of a fabric for rainwear too.  It’s but one of the new Dorset fashion fabrics going places in men’s wear, women’s wear and sportswear.

I think this is a rather clever way to show off the colors available in this new fabric, with Mr. and Mrs. looking on and ready to enjoy a vacation by the pool.  You can’t tell it so much from my photograph, but the ad photography is crisp enough that you can see the twill and texture of the fabrics.  There is even a gabardine sun.

From the always fantastic American Fabrics, issue 4, 1947.

3 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Cohama Fabrics, 1947

Today’s post is a rerun from over two years ago.  I recently ran across this and decided to share it with all who missed it the first time around.

I suppose I ought to have a category titled, “Things I didn’t know,”  because that is where this entry would have to be placed.  Or it could go under “Things I learned while looking for something else,”  or even, “Things I should have noticed before but did not.”

While looking through my collection of American Fabrics magazines, the above ad caught my eye. It tells how fabric maker Cohama maintained the Cohama Hand-Looming Workshop,  a place where the fabric designers could experiment with their ideas before committing to large runs on the mechanized looms. I thought that this was a pretty neat idea, and gave Cohama some silent brownie points for such a practical solution to what can be a costly problem.

But it turns out that Cohana was not the only wool manufacturer who relied on the hand loom to try out the new ideas of the designers.

In the Fall 1949 issue of American Fabrics there is a small article, “Ideas Tailored on a Moment’s Notice”, in which they show the hand weaving operation at Forstmann Woolen Company.  Called the Provincial Designing Room, it was under the direction of Miss Margaret Swanson, and employed two hand looms on which weavers would interpret the ideas of designers working for clothing manufacturers. The designer could watch the fabric develop, and make changes if necessary. After the designer was satisfied with the sample, it would be processed by the mechanized looms.

I love the quaintness of the Provincial Designing Room!  In the photo above Miss Swanson is working with Ellen Brooke of Glenhunt (a suit and coat maker) and a hand weaver to develop the fabric to Miss Brooke’s satisfaction.

Brooke and Swanson, looking at how the newly developed fabric cuts and drapes.

The hand weaver, Alice Berman, making the sample worked out by Swanson and Brooke.

A swatch of the handwoven sample

And where the run of fabric will eventually be made, on the fully automated looms at Forestmann.

All illustrations are from the Fall 1949 issue of American  Fabrics and are copyright Reporter Publications, Inc.

8 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Lady Manhattan, 1958

The mood is excitement and now is the time for Lady Manhattan

Smoothest classic shirt in sight… in Reeves silky Supima cotton broadcloth.  And it boasts the distinctive virtues of all Lady Manhattan shirts…precision cut, collars and extra-long stay-in shirt tails.

Last week when I was looking for a Lady Manhattan ad I couldn’t find one, but better late than never, no?   The shirt in the ad is very similar to the two that I have with the open collar, French cuffs and French front.  I love that the model is wearing it with slacks, even though she’s all glammed up otherwise.  But how else would one present oneself when flying their jet fighter?

13 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Ceeb of Miami, 1960

Thunderbird is the word!

For your sculptured Ceeb swimsuit… get inside this faille Lastex creation from Indian Summer Collection.  A vibrant hand screened print in gold or lilac combinations…For smashing coordinates, try the cotton skirt and the Italian straw hat with matching band and snood.

I find this ad to be a bit confusing.  I suppose the print is a bit “Indian” inspired, with the reference to Thunderbird and the fact that they called the collection “Indian Summer.”  But what’s with that sculpture (Is it African, or is it modern?) and the odd arm gestures?

I love that the ad shows the coordinating skirt and the hat with the matching band and Snood.  But who was still using the word “snood” in 1960?  Odd.

12 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign, Summer Sports

Ad Campaign – Cutex, 1967

Catch a perfect wave of color from Cutex

…True color – blended into lipstick with a new kind of smoothness – awash with a frosted gloss!  Cutex, actually Cutex created it.  The perfect combination of the things you loved about lipstick with the modern message of gloss.  Four luscious looks you’d brave the briny for.  It’s the new wave of Fashion – from Cutex, with color coordinated nail polishes.  You’ll find the effect positively tidal.

It’s rather interesting that this is an ad for a product that you can’t even tell whether or not it is being used.  That was the state of lips in the mid to late Sixties though.  The lips were truly barely there, but note the heavily made up eyes.

And also note, there is no bathing or surfer cap!

3 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Virginia Slims, 1972

Back around the Turn of the Century, fashion dictated that you run around the tennis courts in layers upon layers of clothes.  That made you look elegant when you moved.  If you could move.

I can only imagine the thousands of words that have been written by scholars of women’s studies about the Virginia Slims ad campaign and their crazy mixed message of “You’ve come a long way,” and then, “baby.”  So I’ll leave that issue to others and just talk a bit about the clothes.

In case you are not old enough to actually remember the ads, they put a recreated scene from the past showing how it was for women in the “good old days,” and then the way it was in the early 70s after women got their own cigarette.  The recreated scenes showed an interesting mishmash of Edwardian looking clothing on women who were usually sneaking a smoke.

In the “old” photo above the two tennis players do look overdressed, so what were women wearing to play tennis in 1905?  According to tennis player Violet Sutton:

But it’s a wonder we could move at all.  Do you want to know what we wore?  A long undershirt, pair of drawers, two petticoats, white linen corset cover, duck shirt, shirtwaist, long white silk stockings, and a floppy hat.  We were soaking wet when we finished a match.*

So change these women into white stockings (and shoes as well) and it looks to be fairly close to Violet’s memories.

*Interview with Violet Sutton recounted in “The Sutton Sisters” by Jeane Hoffman, published in Fireside book of Tennis, 1974, quoted in When the Girls Came out to Play, Patricia Campbell Warner, 2006

7 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign

Ad Campaign – Blassport, 1971

We were discussing earlier this week the revivals of knickers that have taken place over the years.  One was in the early 1980s, reportedly triggered by a photo of Princess Diana taken while on her honeymoon.  A quick look through the vintage patterns at Etsy confirmed that knickers were big in 1982.

I remembered that knickers were a bit of a fad for a short while during my high school years, 1970 through 1973.  Again, I turned to etsy, did a search for “knickers pattern,” and quickly realized that 1971 was the year of the knickers.

I would have been a sophomore or junior during that year, and while I can remember some of the girls at my school wearing them, I was not tempted by the knickers.  At the time I was into really short skirts, and especially, short culottes.  It’s a bit strange that they were allowed due to our no pants rule in the dress code, but a blind eye was turned to culottes and knickers.  I think the attitude was that they were better than the short skirts we were wearing.

It was a good thing that I did not buy into the knickers fad because it came and went very quickly.  Had I acquired a pair I’d have been stuck having to wear them because clothes were expensive and we had to wear what was bought until we either outgrew them or wore them out.  I would have been a fashion has-been!

18 Comments

Filed under Ad Campaign, Proper Clothing