Tag Archives: 1953

Glamour, December, 1953

Let’s focus on the dress.

And who wouldn’t whisper compliments to the girl in the holly-berry red dress? Heavily textured lace overlays satin for a party dress that’s bare of shoulder  but covered of arm.  By Suzy Perette in Liberty cotton lace over acetate satin.  About $35.  Shoes by Herbert Levine.  

Suzy Perette was not an actual person.  It was the name of one of the labels owned by Lombardy Frocks, which was located in the Garment District of New York City.  The owner of Lombardy, Max Blauner, would buy the rights to reproduce dresses from Paris designers.  Dior was a favorite, and you can see Dior’s influence in this lovely dress.

Suzy Perette was considered to be a moderately priced line, and it was marketed toward young career women.  The $35 price tag does seem to be moderate, but in the 2013 dollar, the price is closer to $300.

By looking at the photo, even the original cover, I would never have guessed the dress was lace.  Thank goodness for the “On the cover’ feature.

Photographer:  Leonibruno-Bodi

Models: Not credited

Copyright: Condé Nast

 

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Ad Campaign – White Stag, 1953

Black Magic

There’s pure sorcery in the exciting colors of White Stag’s dramatic new ski jacket.  Soft pastel shades are sharply accented by jet black Zelan-treated corduroy and typically White Stag “railroad” stitching.

Wear it straight or with a black web waist cincher, or tuck it in… it’s magic!

Thanks to the US Patent and Trademark Office website, I can tell you that Zelan is a chemical compound that is applied to fabrics to make them waterproof.  It is still trademarked by du Pont – “Better Things for Better Living…Through Chemistry”.

It’s been snowy all day, and I’m sure the local ski resorts are loving it.  Actually, I’m loving it too.  There’s just something special about the first snowfall of the year.

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Saturday Evening Post, July 18, 1953

Today’s post is a bit off topic, but I’ll be bringing it around to fashion before it ends.

In 1953 the two kids are all consumed by their books (I’m betting there’s at least one comic book hidden behind the “legitimate” books) and today’s kids are consumed by their smart phones and other gadgets.  But the result is the same.  Dad is lecturing about how they could read at home, and mom is taking photos to share with her friends.  In today’s world she’d at least make the kids stand in front of the pretty view so she could post the photos on her blog and write about how much fun they had.

I tried to pinpoint Point Lookout.  I wasn’t even sure it was a depiction of an actual place.  And while there are Point Lookouts all over the country, this one looks like it was taken in my part of the country.  There was a Point Lookout on Highway 70 between Asheville and Old Fort, and it very well could have been the spot.  Today, Hwy 70 has been replaced by I-40, but there is still a trail up to  Point Lookout that people can hike or bike.

And now for the fashion.  I’m sure you’ve noticed that the mom and the daughter are both wearing dresses.  I can remember taking rides on the Blue Ridge Parkway, or through the Smokies, and my great aunt and my grandmother would be wearing casual dresses, but thank goodness that by the early 1960s, little girls were allowed to wear shorts for a day in the mountains.

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Ad Campaign – Sea Nymph Glamour Suit, 1953

by the sea, by the beautiful sea nymph glamour suit

When each wave comes rollin’ in… you’re the most alluring picture by the sea in your Sea Nymph glamour suit!

When was the last time you heard the word glamour being associated with a swimsuit?  Can you imagine a time when glamour was being used to sell instead of sexy?   Is this suit any less appealing because it is glamorous rather than sexy?  And when did this shift to become all encompassing?

For me, I’d take being glamorous over being sexy any day of the week.  Not that I am particularly glamorous, of course, but it just seems to be a more fun alternative.   Sexy implies that it is all about the body, but glamour is about the woman, the personality, the persona.  And which is more important?

Just thinking “out loud.”

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Mademoiselle, August, 1953

It’s August, and that means time for the Mademoiselle college issue.  There was a time when this issue was as important as the Seventeen Back-to-School issue.  Today we think of the big Vogue September issue, but for their demographics, the August issues of Mademoiselle and Seventeen were just as big.

I can’t imagine a more perfect image of a 1950s college girl.  Cashmere twin set?  Check.  Plaid kilt? Check.  Just add a neat pageboy and a fresh face, and you are set.

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Ad Campaign – Kedettes, 1953

I did promise to feature shoes this month in the ad campaign, and so now I’m making good on that promise.  Kedettes was a division of the United States Rubber Company’s Keds brand, making canvas and rubber casual shoes for women.

Some of the shoes in the ad look a bit dowdy to me, but have you ever seen a cuter thing than that Gay Espadrille?  The shoes came with two sets of laces – one to match; one to contrast, and they were available in twelve different colors.  They actually made it for several years in the early 50s, so why is it that I’ve never found a pair?

A few years ago Keds had a collection based on updated versions of the old Kedettes of the 1940s and 1950s.   Most of them had 2 -3 inch wedge heels , which lessened the appeal to me considerably…

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Charm, March, 1953

Black with white dots and a splash of red!

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