Thursday, March 27, 2014

Walt Disney Visits Hollywood Royalty

In 1932, the three Barrymore siblings - Ethel, John and Lionel - filmed an MGM picture together called Rasputin and the Empress, a period piece with elaborate costumes. Around the same time, Walt Disney was working on a short film titled Mickey's Gala Premier in which a new Mickey short premieres at Grauman's Chinese Theatre and all the big movie stars come out to watch. In the short film, the Barrymore trio appear in the first limousine dressed in the costuming from their recent movie. 

Disney visited the Barrymores on the set of Rasputin and the Empress seemingly to discuss their cameo in his upcoming Mickey short. This is another one of those photos I found and fell in love with because of the unlikely pairing! When I think of Walt Disney movies, I don't think of the Barrymores and vice versa. I love these fun finds!

Lionel, Walt, Ethel, and John
Rasputin and the Empress set, 1932

John assisting Ethel out of the limo in Mickey's Gala Premier

Lionel exiting the limo in Mickey's Gala Premier

You can watch Mickey's Gala Premier below thanks to Cartoon Station on YouTube. It features other Old Hollywood stars such as Mae West, Jean Harlow, Clark Gable and the Marx Brothers, plus many, many more!

Until next time,

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Vintage Adverts

Advertisements from decades ago are extremely interesting to me. The colors, the use of words to tell the consumer why they should invest in the product, and even the products that used to frequent the pages of magazines on adverts are all so much different than what we see today in magazines or on TV. Sure, we obviously still see car ads, makeup ads, and soda ads. But how often do we see advertising for cigarettes anymore? Also, compared to 60+ years ago, we see more ads directed towards both genders instead of just females! 


Advertising in the 1930s seemed to be heavy in cigarettes and Coca Cola. The United States was in the midst of the Great Depression, so ads for big ticket items such as automobiles or radios seemed to be few and far between, and advertising for luxury items such as makeup were also sparse. Even in the '30s, advertisers knew that the use of movie stars would help promote a product big time! 

Actress Claudette Colbert (It Happened One Night, 1934) for 
Lucky Strike cigarettes

Claudette Colbert tells how the throat-strain of emotional acting led her to Luckies.
Miss Colbert says: "After experimenting, I'm convinced that my throat is safest with Luckies." 

Jean Harlow (Hell's Angels, 1930) for Coca Cola

This drink just naturally fits into a pause from work or play....Tastes good when
nothing else does....Leaves you cool and refreshed.

1937 Chevrolet

You get all the newest things of 1937 in Chevrolet
"The Complete Car - Completely New!"

Irresistible Talc

Easily, quickly, you can dust your body odor away with this dainty deodorant talc. Apply it generously all over your body. No matter how great your body warmth....the exquisite perfume of Irresistible Talc keeps its exotic delicacy....keeps you irresistible.

Westinghouse World Cruiser

Just taste the thrill of World Cruising with Westinghouse - of choosing your radio entertainment from the best the whole world affords.


With the Great Depression behind them, advertisers in the 1940s shifted focus to the glamour of Hollywood movie starlets and how to look like them. The war effort and how those at home could help were also prevalent in advertising. With the men fighting overseas, ads were still aimed at mostly women. After the war, more women could now afford the little things such as lipstick and other beauty items and families could spend money on a new car.

Rita Hayworth (Gilda, 1946) for Max Factor Tru-Color Lipstick

The color stays on through every lipstick test.

Martha O'Driscoll (Carnegie Hall, 1947) for Cashmere Bouquet Beau Cake

And, as beautiful Martha O'Driscoll says: "Such a time-saver! When I open my Beau Cake, the sponge is always ready for use."

General Electric appliances

Hers is the bloom of youth. She's taken advantage of the age she lives in - the age of modern electrical servants that lighten household tasks. No wonder she looks younger than women to whom home-making is a daily round of drudgery! 

1949 Ford

We think you'll agree the '49 Ford has "the look of the year!" 

Nestle chocolate

Delicious, nutritious and compact - chocolate is everybody's favorite, whether on the fighting front as an energy food, or on the home front as a quick pick-me-up.


The '50s brought about Marilyn Monroe and women everywhere were trying to attain that perfect figure. With the end of World War II came (mostly) the end of the working woman. More women were able to be housewives, and advertisers took note of that and household products to make running a family easier became a focus.

Marilyn Monroe (Niagara, 1953) for Westmore Hollywood Cosmetics

Even more important, it imparts a radiant natural glow that brings out your true beauty!

Perma-Lift Brassiere

"The Lift that never lets you down!"


Crystal-clear, sparkling 7-Up is so pure, so good, so wholesome that folks of all ages can "fresh up" often!

DuPont Cellophane

Good things are twice as good in Cellophane.


Crisco-fried foods are so digestible you can eat them 7 days a week!

Now, I'm no advertising expert and I certainly don't keep up with today's adverts, but I know we would never see babies in cellophane in an ad today! It's fun for me to see old ads. They all have so much wording, really trying to sell their product! I really love the ones featuring the most beautiful movie stars, but that brassiere one really speaks to me!

 Until next time,

Friday, March 21, 2014

The "I Love Lucy Baby" Doll

In I Love Lucy's second season, it was discovered that Lucille Ball was pregnant with her second child, and, unlike her first pregnancy, it was incorporated into the show's storyline. The audience got to see every pratfall and pregnancy woe that Lucy Ricardo experienced!! 

In the December 15, 1952 episode "Pregnant Women Are Unpredictable," Ricky walks in on Lucy in the living room with a baby doll, practicing bathing and diapering the baby. 

This baby doll was the very one American Character issued for the Christmas season in 1952. What better way to sell your product than to have Lucy Ricardo herself playing with it?! The doll was not gender specific, as the gender of the Ricardo's baby would not be revealed until its birth. 

The "I Love Lucy Baby" originally sold for $9.98 in a variety of department stores across the United States, from Higbee's in Cleveland to Macy's in Kansas City. The baby was advertised as 16" tall and could bathe, blow bubbles, and cry real tears! Take a look!

You will see Lucy and Desi play Poppy and Mommy
with this wonderfully lifelike doll on the I Love Lucy T.V. 
show...You will see Lucy feed it, diaper it, and watch it cry real tears,
pacify it... YOUR little girl too can do all these things with the 
"I Love Lucy Baby".

She drinks, wets, blows bubbles, can be bathed, CRIES with a 
lusty voice and real tears. 16" tall, moulded rubber with plastic head,
beautifully dressed, complete with gift box with a drawerful of baby necessaries.

I adore the wording of this vintage ad... "lusty voice" and "baby necessaries"!  We never see these type of advertisements today. Vintage ads are so fantastic.

What do you think? Would you have wanted this baby doll if you were a little girl in 1952? I know I would!!

Until next time,

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Most Epic Photo In All Of Yesteryear

Sometimes I come across a photo of Old Hollywood that gets me so excited, a photo I've never seen before with some of my favorite vintage movie stars and I begin to wonder where it's been all my life!

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, perhaps more commonly known as MGM, was a powerhouse in the golden age of Hollywood. In 1943, MGM celebrated its 20th anniversary and assembled its biggest stars for one magnificent, enormously brilliant, beautiful photo

Front Row: James Stewart, Margaret Sullavan, Lucille Ball, Hedy Lamarr, Katherine Hepburn, Louis B. Mayer, Greer Garson, Irene Dunn, Susan Peters, Ginny Simms, Lionel Barrymore

Second Row: Harry James, Brian Donlevy, Red Skelton, Mickey Rooney, William Powell, Wallace Beery, Spencer Tracy, Walter Pidgeon, Robert Taylor, Pierre Aumont, Lewis Stone, Gene Kelly, Jackie Jenkins

Third Row: Tommy Dorsey, George Murphy, Jean Rogers, James Craig, Donna Reed, Van Johnson, Fay Bainter, Marsha Hunt, Ruth Hussey, Marjorie Main, Robert Benchley

Fourth Row: Dame May Whitty, Reginald Owen, Keenen Wynn, Diana Lewis, Marilyn Maxwell, Esther Williams, Ann Richards, Marta Linden, Lee Bowman, Richard Carlson, Mary Astor

Fifth Row: Blanche Ring, Sara Haden, Fay Holden, Burt Lahr, Francis Gifford, June Allyson, Richard Whorf, Frances Rafferty, Spring Byington, Connie Gilchrist, Gladys Cooper

Sixth Row: Ben Blue, Chill Wills, Keye Luke, Barry Nelson, Desi Arnaz, Henry O'Neill, Bob Crosby, Rags Ragland

Lucille Ball, Katherine Hepburn, Esther Williams, Gene Kelly, all in one picture?! I can't handle all of this amazingness!!

Until next time,


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