Catalina is another of those great old sportswear companies that I love to find. It was located in California, a fact that the company used in their branding. Many of the labels brag that Catalina was a “California Creator,” and that their products were “Styled for the Stars of Hollywood.” In the early years they were mainly a maker of bathing suits, but they moved into sportswear by the 1940s. Especially great were the figural design sweaters they made.
I found the blouse above several weeks ago, and I’ve spent some time thinking about it. If not for that exaggerated collar, it is pretty typical of the late 1950s and early 60s. But that crazy collar might make someone assume that this is a product of the 70s.
It is not. Collar aside, this shirt dates from that period of time – the late 1950s and early 1960s – when people had an ongoing love of all thing Italian. That included harlequin prints, Sophia Loren and Emilio (Pucci) of Capri.
Besides the styling and the fabric, the label points to an early Sixties date. This blue label was only used for a short time at Catalina, and while I don’t know the exact dates, all the garments I have ever seen with it date from the late 1950s or early 60s. You can see a lot of Catalina labels on the VFG Label Resource. While the Resource does not always lead to an exact dating, it is invaluable in giving a general idea of when a particular label was used.
The rolled short sleeves and the squared-off hem with side vents are commonly seen features in casual clothing of this era.