Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing everyone a day filled with love, family, friends and good food.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Pop-up Thanksgiving Card, c. 1940s

This illustration reminds me of 1940s-era movie cartoons.

That's a red feather, still intact after all these years since "Uncle Bob" sent it to "Dear Honey."

And the back has a witty embellishment on the Norcross logo!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Holiday season scrap, c. 1880s

Slow down! That's what I'd like to tell my calendar, which seems to speed up after Halloween. (Those days dragged slowly when we were children, didn't they?) I'll do my best to savor every day between now and New Year's.

The snow squall we had tonight was beautiful. The snow swirled. Then it was gone.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Advertising calendar, 1960s

This is one of the earliest pieces of ephemera that I collected. Lisa's was our place to bring clothing for dry cleaning. It's long gone. I'm pretty sure this was a 1968 or 1969 calendar; many places continued to use JFK on their calendars in tribute, long after his death.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Lorna's Online Book of Paper Dolls

Letty Schwarz, left, and Lorna and George Thomopoulos look through a book from Kwei-lin Lum's phenomenal collection during the convention.

Lorna has created an online book called "The English Paper Doll." Click on the title to view paper dolls from the 16th century up to the modern era.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Paper Dolls With Military Stories To Tell

UPDATE:  I was really impressed that the reporter sought out Judy Johnson for a quote -- the reporter did her homework, and perhaps googled paper doll history and found Judy. However it happened, I'm glad Judy gave a historical perspective. And glad artist Pam DeLuco created this outstanding set.

The illustration above is from Thursday's New York Times; you can read the full story here.

And you can order a set of these dolls by clicking: Shotwell Paper Mill. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veterans Day

Barbara Barnett's outstanding women of the military were distributed as souvenirs at the 2012 convention in Dayton, Ohio.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Show magazine, 1964

From Kwei-lin Lum's display of paper doll oddities: Show magazine, Jan. 1964. A large- size magazine with luscious photography, now gone. Great cover of Richard Burton, just as his fame skyrocketed after "Cleopatra" and his great love affair with Elizabeth Taylor.

Inside, an article about Jackie Gleason, accompanied by a paper doll illustration of the comedian. This is a fun riff on the earliest paper dolls, which had one head to insert in multiple costumes, some with elaborate background scenery. Here, multiple heads, one costume.

"The Hollow Clown" -- apparently Gleason was considered vulgar by some.

Little did they know what was coming down the pike.

How was he considered vulgar? Without reading the article, I can't say what the writer's take was. But here are my thoughts: Gleason's stage persona was an outsized, blustery figure, loud -- and angry at times. Thinking about the figure he struck on TV, especially on "The Honeymooners" -- working stiff, blue collar, the violence close to the surface  -- made me think of Tony Soprano, who was loud, outsized, vulgar, over-the-top violent, scary -- one of the great TV characters. (In a couple of episodes, Steve Buscemi, as Soprano's cousin, does a wicked Gleason imitation.)

In 1964, Gleason's kind of comedy might have turned off a number of people. Lenny Bruce was not mainstream but was playing small clubs back then. Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, Danny Kaye were the kind of comics people were comfortable with -- slapstick, funny but gentle at heart. Bill Cosby and Carol Burnett continued that tradition.

Monday, November 4, 2013

The New York Herald, Paris edition, Paper Dolls, 1895

A Christmas gift last year from my husband: a reproduction of a paper doll page from the New York Herald Paris edition, March 10, 1895. "Actors and Actresses as Children's Dolls." 

The actors are Mlle. De Boncza, M. Magnier and Mlle. Tessandier.

Wanda De Boncza was a French actress of Polish origin who performed with the Comedie-Francaise. 

Pierre Magnier

Aimee Tessandier

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Silver Screen in Black& White

What a great idea for a paper doll book: Black & white sketches of classic silent movie fashions by Norma Lu Meehan. This is a limited edition from Paperdoll Review -- only 250 copies of this 6-page book will be available for $22.50 each. You can order yours here.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

The Younger Set, 1936

The Younger Set, published by Samuel Gabriel, 1936, in mint condition and on display in the Competition room.