Ad Campaign – Dalton Cashmere, 1955

This is CELESTE by DALTON…

the slim and sinuous sweater

that takes a fresh look at Spring!

Gracefully styled of pure

and precious 100% imported cashmere.

Since yesterday’s post was about Hadley Cashmere, I thought today I’d talk a bit about the other great American cashmere company, Dalton.  Dalton was founded in 1949 by Arthur Dery and Maurice Saltzman (who was also the owner of Bobbie Brooks), and was  headquartered in Cleveland and  Willoughby, Ohio.  Dalton was best known for their cashmere sweaters, but they also made woolen skirts that were dyed to match the sweaters.

It is fairly common to find vintage Dalton sweaters that are two-tone;  usually the sweater is a beautiful color with white or contrasting trim.  They also made intarsia designs, often in three colors.  Scalloped edges and appliques  were also Dalton details.  And look at the illustration to see how extra ribbing and buttons were added as design elements.

Like Hadley, Dalton produced a high quality product.   At their best, the cashmere produced by these two companies rivaled that produced in Scotland.  It’s interesting that the ad specified “imported cashmere” because all cashmere fibers had to be imported from Asia.

10 Comments

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10 responses to “Ad Campaign – Dalton Cashmere, 1955

  1. S Geiger

    I live in Canton, Ohio and have really enjoyed two stories you’ve done recently. We are 60 miles South of Cleveland and had a local Dalton factory with store in the 60s and 70s.
    Also The Hoover Company headquareters was up the street in North Canton. The city was famous for two things even before the Pro Football HOF was was built. Thanks, Lizzy!

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    • Richard

      Hi,
      Nice post. I was born in Canton and my mother went to school (McKinley High) with both the Hoover children and, I believe, the Timken children as well. Her family owned Canton Barrel and Bag, which was run by my grandmother starting back in the early-to-mid-1900’s when women typically did not run manufacturing plants. They made wine casks as well as being the first or second company in the US to make plastic (back then they were called polyethylene) bags.

      My dad became associated with Stark’s (O’Neil’s) and, since he grew up in NYC, was friends with a lot of the NY ladies’ wear manufacturers. I know he knew both the Dalton and Hadley people as he purchased from them many times each year. They were the finest products made here at the time. I have items from both that were given to my mom by the owners of those companies due to my dad doing business with them in the ’50s-’70s. One Hadley son went to school with me (UNC), and before they closed down, they used to send boxes of sweaters down to the frat house for everyone as gifts.

      Today, with the purchase of Ballantyne and others by the Chinese, and both Dalton and Hadley gone, the quality and value of these products has nosedived. If you want a check, go to any high-end store and check out their cashmere products today, and then check out Hadley, Dalton, or Ballantyne products from the 60’s or earlier. HUGE difference in the weaving, the ply thickness, the overall weight of raw materials used, etc.
      I collect older sweaters so my daughter will have the opportunity to own and wear quality products when she grows up; she can pass them down to her children as well if they are taken care of. How sad that there are no real quality makers any more. Loro Piana is probably the only one who still makes his own stuff. Even Johnston’s of Elgin stuff is kind of cheaply made today.

      Cheers!

      Rich

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      • Rich,
        Thanks for adding your insights.

        I agree that vintage cashmere is far superior to most of what passes for cashmere today. There are a few quality makers left in Scotland. Barrie Knitwear is one. They are now owned by Chanel and, along with Johnson’s of Elgin, make the sweaters for Chanel. I can tell you that a Chanel sweater is pretty much the ultimate, but at $3000 it is out of reach for most people.

        I love your story about Hadley. One of their factories was near me, in Weaverville, NC. I loved their factory store, and mourned when it closed in the 1970s.

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  2. I love cachmere – thanks for this post! Great job!

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  3. vastlycurious.com

    This style of sweater has come and gone and come again with the detailing but I would love to own just one really nice cashmere sweater !

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  4. I have a Dalton cardigan sweater that belonged to my mother-in-law. It is white with blue cotton velvet trim and appliques of birds on it. I’ve never worn it, but I should! Thanks, as always, for the information on these great American companies!

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  5. Here is a short video of the making of a Chanel cashmere cardigan:

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