I’m really picky when it comes to adding things younger than I am to my collection. There really is a lot of stuff left over from the 1960s and younger, so a collector can afford to wait until something really special comes along. As a rule of thumb, the younger the object, the better condition I want it to have. A pair of Keds from 1923 can have a bit of wear, but I want a pair of sneakers from 1963 to be in excellent condition.
I first spotted these on the Instagram feed of @jessamity and I knew I had to have them. I have an early 1960s set of separates from Tabak of California, that came from the estate of the designer, Irene Saltern, that are a gray and white stripe. These shoes could not be more perfect to go with those separates.
I don’t have a firm date on the Tabak pieces, but stylistically, they date to the early 1960s. I can be a bit more certain about the shoes. I’m pretty sure they came from 1962 or 1963. The story is in the turned-up toe.
This is from a 1963 advertisement for a pair of Daniel Green slippers. I had saved it because I have these slippers in pink. What was it about 1963 that made women want to wear a vaguely Asian-looking toe on their shoes?
I don’t have a definitive answer, but it is useful to get an idea of what else was happening in the world that might have inspired the look. In 1962, Jackie Kennedy went on a tour of India and Pakistan. Also in 1962, Lawrence of Arabia was released. Eastern culture was on people’s minds, and this looks to me as a fuzzy sort of Asian look.
To show just how fuzzy, the Daniel Green slippers were advertised as “Bangkok… Oriental opulence in a brocade slipper…” and the color was described as “Ming” blue.
I have not been able to turn up any information about Cool Notes, but these are a pretty inexpensively-made product. My guess is that they were made for the teen market.
There is one more hint on the box. These were sold at a store called Masso’s. I’ve found a Masso’s that was located in Plainville, Texas. I could not determine if the store is still in operation.
As always, additional information about Cool Notes would be greatly appreciated.