The 1940s was a time when no one gave much thought to sunscreen and you could happily chain-smoke cigarettes and drink cocktails while you tanned, without so much as a thought to the health consequences. In 1948 the Senator Hotel in Atlantic City installed sunlamps in the ceilings so its patrons could tan, even when(…)
Air Hostess Training in the 1940s
Photos taken at the McConnell Air Hostess School which trained air hostesses for TWA in the 1940s. The training included learning the correct way to serve drinks, dealing with inebriated passengers and even learning how to change nappies (did Air Hostesses used to do that?). Even more surprisingly they are also pictured having chewing gum(…)
Miss Lovely Legs 1949
Curious photos from a Beautiful Legs Contest from 1949. The pictures raise lots of questions in my mind – aside from why you’d want to enter a ‘beautiful legs contest’ in the first place.
Marilyn Monroe before Plastic Surgery
Marilyn Monroe photographed in February 1947 when she was still a young starlet. At this time she was still called Norma Jeane, and hadn’t yet undergone her Hollywood makeover. In 1950 she had rhinoplasty (a nose-job) and a chin implant on the advice of her agent who paid for the surgery. She only changed her(…)
5 Strikingly Modern Victorian Photo Portraits
These beautiful Victorian portraits are a type of early photograph called daguerreotypes. Invented by Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre in the 1830s the photographic image is imprinted onto a silvered copper plate, making each portrait unique.
How The World Looked When Airships Filled The Sky
The airship industry effectively died with the Hindenburg disaster of 1937, but for 80 or so years previously the dream of lighter-than-air travel had gradually been becoming a reality. The sight of airships were becoming less of a novelty and were seen in the sky’s across Europe and North America. In truth though, by the(…)
A Rather Intriguing (and Ghoulish) Photograph
I stumbled across this photograph this morning and I’m ghoulishly intrigued by it. The only information I have about it is that it’s captioned ‘Air Suicide Attempt‘, 1929.
An Original 1940s Make-Up Tutorial (Including Contouring!)
This photos were taken at a professional photo shoot for a young starlet some time during the 1940s. It’s really interesting to see the different stages, especially the amount of contouring they used on her face. Presumably the make up was done specifically for taking photographs as it seems a little heavy for real life.(…)
Iconic Wedding Dresses #7: Gene Tierney (1946)
When Gene Tierney married costume designer Oleg Cassini in 1941 she was planning to wear this amazing lace dress, designed especially for her by her husband-to-be. Ultimately though they didn’t have time to get the dress made, as eloped to Las Vegas to get married to escape the disapproval of her family, who opposed her(…)
Bizarre 1950s Body Jewelry
So, who knew there was a trend for body jewelry in the 50s? These photos are from 1951 of ‘Cling’ jewelry, which presumably was somehow stuck to your skin rather than pierced into your skin! Frankly I suspect these twinkling baubles would be uncomfortable, would probably fall off after a short time and also leave(…)
Happy Vintage New Year!
What better way to start off the new year by seeing how they celebrated in years gone by! These are some of my favourite vintage new year pin ups from the 1920s, 30s and 40s. I love the Myrna Loy one – I’m glad I’m not the only one who struggles to stay up till(…)
Iconic Wedding Dresses #6: Mia Farrow (1966)
When 21-year-old Mia Farrow married Frank Sinatra (who was 50 at the time) in 1966 she wore an white skirt suit with a bow at the waist. The boxy cropped jacket had sleeves which finished at the elbow and crystal buttons. Teamed with her famous pixie cut hair she was a truly modern 60s bride.(…)
1950s Wet Proof Paper Bikini..?
Er, I can’t claim to tell you much about these photos except that they were labelled ‘wet proof paper’ 1953. I have to assume that the bikini and beachwear are made from ‘wet proof paper’. Why, or what that is, and whether it’s suitable material for swimwear I have no idea. Sorry! If you can(…)
WW2 Fashion: Liquid Seamed Stockings
If you think you need a steady hand to apply eyeliner, then try drawing straight seams up the backs of your legs! During WW2 when stockings were in short supply women were encouraged to use liquid stockings instead, and to draw the seams using eyeliner (or to get a friend to do it for you!).(…)
Slenderizing Salons of the 1940s
You thought zumba and ashtanga yoga were torture enough in the pursuit of youth and fitness? Be grateful you didn’t live in the 1940s when young women were encouraged to visit slenderizing salons in the pursuit of perfection. These photos show poor Pat Ogden being pummeled by a Wooden Barrel Massager and a Roaler Massager(…)
Iconic Wedding Dresses #4: Ava Gardner (1951)
When Ava Gardner married Frank Sinatra after months of media speculation the world went wild. This was Gardner’s third marriage and she had long been branded a femme fatale by the press. Sinatra also came in for a lot of flack for leaving his wife Nancy for her, both by the Hollywood Establishment and the(…)
The First Ever Miss Universe Contest, 1952
It was the lovely Armi Kuusela from Finland who won the first ever Miss Universe contest in 1952*, with Miss Hawaii, Miss Greece, Miss Hong Kong and Miss Germany in the runner up positions. Interestingly Miss United Kingdom, Aileen P. Chase, who was a runner up in Miss World the previous year didn’t even make(…)
Iconic Wedding Dresses #3: Grace Kelly (1956)
If you want to talk fairy tale weddings then Grace Kelly‘s wedding to Prince Rainier III of Monaco was the real deal. One of the world’s biggest movie stars marrying a prince in a bonefide Royal wedding? You can’t beat that! Of course once she married into the Royal Family and became a princess she(…)