Wednesday, December 16, 2009

vintage new yorker ad of the day

Vintage Ad #922: Rose Marie Reid

This ad for a popular 1950s swimwear designer delighted quite a few websurfers when it was posted on Flickr. Chalk it up to the simple, classy style the ad designer used, or the hints of mischief emanating from the model's face.

As for what a New York shopper could have done to amuse themselves after purchasing a "jewel of the sea," let's consult the "Goings on About Town" section (or, as it was subtitled in '58, "a conscientious calendar of events of interest").

If they were in a theatrical mood, productions in first run on Broadway included Look Back in Anger, The Music Man, Sunrise at Campobello and West Side Story.

Under "Night Life", the "Big and Brassy" section might have caught their eye. At the Copacabana, "Ella Fitzgerald, as oracle of many voices, many moods, many tempos, can range from the romantic to the abstract as quick as a wink. She's the one good deed in a very long night." Use your imagination as to what that last statement implied about the rest of the evening's entertainment.

The description of a night at the Latin Quarter is even more colourful:
A fond and foolish replica of the days when floor shows really were floor shows—a pride of showgirls big enough to beat the Chicago Bears; a spate o singers, clowns (the very broadminded Bernard Brothers), pony ballerinas, and whatnot, all marching and countermarching, and a real onstage rainstorm. Lest all this indicate the world to be a ceaseless round of heedless pleasure, there is Johnnie Ray, homely homiletics at the ready, to sing and swing from a flying trapeze.
For high culture, they'd have to forget about visiting the Museum of Modern Art: it was closed "for carpentry and such," with no set reopening date.

The "Other Events" section covered happenings ranging from information on how to attend a Security Council session at the United Nations to prominent auctions. Even university commencements were listed: did our shopper or any readers decide to crash the festivities at Harvard on June 12 or Princeton on June 17?

Source: The New Yorker, June 14, 1958 - JB

PS: A trio of posts for your reading pleasure on Torontoist:

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