Saturday, July 15, 2017

Vintage 1950s Homes




Bathrooms

          The decade of the 1950’s in the United States was a time of monumental change in homes. Soldiers coming back from WWII were ready to settle down, buy houses, and start families. Money generated from the war gave people the income to not only buy houses, but to buy the latest technologically advanced home appliances and cars. Optimism soared in the huge demand for housing. The first prefabricated homes and quickly built homes were popular.

          The space race between the United States and Russia inspired architects, artists, and car manufacturers. The cold, dreary war had ended and people were ready for color. Home interiors were painted with bright, cheery colors such as green, pink, orange, turquoise, and yellow. Bathrooms and kitchens were commonly painted pink, even pink appliances were sold.

          People craved color, style, and technology in their homes including the bathrooms.



Saturday, July 8, 2017

Vintage 1950s Cars



          The DeSoto Fireflite is an automobile produced by DeSoto in the United States from 1955 to 1960.
          The Fireflite was introduced in 1955 as De Soto's flagship model. It was wider and longer than previous DeSoto models and it came equipped with a V8 engine producing 200 hp when equipped with the 4 barrel carburetor and PowerFlite automatic transmission. The transmission was operated by a Flite-Control lever located on the dashboard.

          The 1956 model car was best known for its long, tapering tail fins, often accentuated by a two-tone exterior finish. The interior had bench seats that could accommodate six passengers. The Fireflite had a 0 to 60 mph acceleration time of 11 seconds and a top speed of 110 mph.
          The Fireflite’s bold design increased sales for DeSoto. In 1955, DeSotos sold well with over 114,765 examples produced, making 1955 the best year for the company since 1946. By 1956, DeSoto placed eleventh in U.S. production with an annual production of 110,418 cars. The success was short-lived, however when Chrysler Corporation discontinued the DeSoto brand in November 1960.

          In 1956 a gold and white Fireflite convertible was the Official Pace Car for the 1956 Indianapolis 500. The Fireflite convertibles are rare, only 186 were produced. The most popular color was red and cream.

          It was assembled in Los Angeles (Maywood) Assembly  

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Vintage 1950s Dessert


Magic Tomato Soup Cake

Cake eaters’ delight! Tomato soup cake. You must taste it to believe anything could be so good!

Ingredients:
2 T butter or margarine
1 c sugar
2 c sifted cake flour
1 t each clove, cinnamon, nutmeg
1/4 t salt
1 can (10 oz) tomato soup
1 baking soda

Directions:
Cream butter, sugar well.  Sift flour; measure; resift 3 times with spices, salt. Alternately add dry ingredients with soup-soda mixture. Pour into greased loaf pan. (Size important; about 8-1/4 x 4-1/2 x 2-1/2). Bake (50 to 60 min 350 F oven). 

The Creamy Chocolate Frosting
1 (3 oz.) pkg cream cheese, 3T milk, 3 c sifted confec. sugar, 2 sq. bitter chocolate melted, 1/2t slat. 1 t vanilla. Mash cheese. Add mil grad,. beating till blended. Add sug. grad. beating till smooth. Add melted chocolate, slat, vanilla. Beat till smooth.


Saturday, June 24, 2017

Vintage 1950s Music


          The number 1 hit on Billboard in 1955 was Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White or Cerezo Rosa or Ciliegi Rosa or Gummy Mambo, the English version of Cerisiers Roses et Pommiers Blancs, a popular song with music by Louiguy (Louis Gugliemi) written in 1950. French lyrics to the song by Jacques Larue and English lyrics by Mack David both exist, and recordings of both have been quite popular.

          However, Perez Prado's recording of the song as an instrumental with his orchestra featuring trumpeter Billy Regis, whose trumpet sound would slide down and up before the melody would resume, was the most popular version in 1955, reaching number one for 10 weeks on the Billboard chart. It became a gold record. Perez had first covered this title for the movie Underwater! (1955), where Jane Russell can be seen dancing to the song. Billboard ranked this version as the No. 1 song of 1955. 

          In the United Kingdom, two versions of the song went to number one in 1955. The first was the version by Perez Prado, which reached number one for two weeks. Less than a month later, a version by the British trumpeter Eddie Calvert reached number one for four weeks.

          Al Hirt released a version on his 1965 album, They're Playing Our Song.
The song was featured in the film Underwater! (1955) starring Jane Russell. The recording by Perez Prado was featured in the films Cookie and Parents in 1989.


Want to hear the song? Go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Q4ywIHLAcQ

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Vintage 1950 Men's Fashion


1950s Men's Trousers

          Pants were still moderately wide-legged at the beginning of the ’50s, but they quickly narrowed to 17.5 inches wide at the hem. They were worn at the waist, higher up than men are used to now. Pleats were out of style. Flat fronts created a smoother, leaner look with a sharp creased down the center . Cuffs were no longer necessary. Many chose a plain hem instead.

          Since suspenders were on the decline in the ‘50s, suit pants became more fitted at the waist to stay up by themselves. Belts were possible, but it was becoming more common to have self belts or continuous waist bands. The look was copied from men’s western pants, some with belt backs for a better fit.



           Pants were still moderately wide-legged at the beginning of the ’50s, but they quickly narrowed to 17.5 inches wide at the hem. They were worn at the waist, higher up than men are used to now. Pleats were out of style. Flat fronts created a smoother, leaner look with a sharp creased down the center . Cuffs were no longer necessary. Many chose a plain hem instead.


          Since suspenders were on the decline in the ‘50s, suit pants became more fitted at the waist to stay up by themselves. Belts were possible, but it was becoming more common to have self belts or continuous waist bands. The look was copied from men’s western pants, some with belt backs for a better fit. Go to: http://vintage1950s.blogspot.com/

Monday, June 12, 2017

1950s Scandal

The Judy Lewis Scandal
          Judy Lewis was born Judith Young. She is the secret biological daughter of actor Clark Gable and actress Loretta Young.
          She was the only biological child that Gable had while he was still alive but he had no relationship with her. Loretta Young conceived during their filming of  The Call of the Wild in 1935. She concealed her pregnancy to protect their film careers and to avoid scandal. Young went to Europe for several months and then returned to a small house in Venice, California with her mother. A Hollywood gossip columnist interviewed Young because she was claiming to be ill for weeks and needed rest. She gave the interview from her bed, covered in blankets to conceal her pregnancy.

          Young gave birth, and weeks later, the baby was put in an orphanage. Lewis would spend the next 19 months in various "hideaways and orphanages" until Young's mother retrieved the toddler. Later Young told Hollywood gossip columnist Louella Parsons that she had "adopted" two children and several weeks later, told Parsons that she had to give one of the children back to its biological mother. She did this as a smokescreen to cover up the birth and to make her adoption story more believable.
          When Lewis was four years old, her mother married businessman Tom Lewis, and Judy went by his last name. Young went on to have two sons, Christopher Lewis and Peter Lewis, with Tom Lewis.

          Lewis looked strikingly like Gable as she grew older, including having ears that stuck out like his.  As Lewis grew up, several people in Hollywood, as well as the public, began to believe that Clark Gable was her biological father. When Judy was fifteen, Gable came to her mother's house to visit her briefly. Gable asked Lewis about her life and then upon leaving, kissed her on her forehead. It was the only time that Judy ever spoke to Gable. Lewis had no idea he was her father. When Lewis met her future husband at the age of twenty-three, it was he who told her that Gable was her biological father and that "everyone" knew, which stunned Lewis. Lewis, at age 31, finally confronted her mother when Gable had been dead for five years. Loretta Young confirmed the truth. Lewis wrote a book about her life titled Uncommon Knowledge, because it seemed that she was the only one who did not know about her true parentage. Loretta Young's autobiography confirmed that Gable was indeed Lewis's father.  The family stayed silent about the claim until after both Loretta Young and her daughter, Judy Lewis had died.
          Judy Lewis appeared and produced several TV series. In 1985, she shared a Writers Guild of America award for several episodes of CBS's Search For Tomorrow. She obtained a Master's degree in Clinical Psychology and became a practicing Psychotherapist in Los Angeles.
Lewis was divorced with one daughter and two grandsons.

Clark Gable died of a stroke on November 16, 1960 at age 59
Loretta Young died of cancer on August 12, 2000 at age 87
Judy Lewis died of cancer on November 25, 2011 at age 76.  


Saturday, June 3, 2017

1950s Movies


To Catch a Thief

          To Catch a Thief was released August 4. 1955. It is a romantic  thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock, based on a novel by David Dodge. The film stars Cary Grant as a retired cat burglar who has to save his reformed reputation by catching a new "cat" preying on the wealthy tourists of the French Riviera. Grace Kelly stars opposite him as his romantic interest in her final film with Hitchcock.

          American expatriate John Robie (Cary Grant) living in style on the Riviera. He must find the copycat jewel thief who pinned their thefts on him. Frances Stevens (Grace Kelly) an American who plays with Robie's affection while helping him find his copycat.
In 2002, The American Film Institute included the film in AFI's 100 Years.


Did you know: Alfred Hitchcock appeared about 9 minutes into the film, sitting next to John Robie on the bus. If you look carefully, he shows up in all his films.