Saturday, September 12, 2020

Vintage 1960 Women's Clothes



In the 1960s, Women's wear followed three broad trends: a continuation of the previous year’s ladylike elegance, the youthful styles, the Space Age influence, and the late 1960s “hippie” style. It was a decade that broke many fashion traditions, mirroring social movements during the time.

Here are just a few of the influential fashion designers of the 1960s. They set the trends for the mainstream and interpretations of their designs are easy to spot if you know what to look for.


Meet the influencers behind the sixties' fashions:



Founded by, Polish-born, Barbara Hulanicki, in the 1960s, the lines (which eventually included makeup) were aimed mostly at teenagers and consisted of what we refer to as today's high street fashion. Her color palette was softened colors of brown, reddish-brown, grey, and plum. Best known for:  Mini-skirts, Long tight sleeves, Maxi skirts, Catsuits, gingham print dresses, and triangular headscarves.



Hubert de Givenchy's creations were refined and helped to define the 1960s style of chic and classy dressing of movie stars. The actress, Audrey Hepburn, was dressed in Givenchy's clothes on and off-screen. Givenchy's most famed design was:  The little black dress, which Hepburn wore it in the movie, "Breakfast at Tiffany's"



Courrèges was a fashion designer who made his debut n the Parisian fashion world of 1960 with his futuristic, youthful but  "high fashion" label. His fashion creations included: Triangle shaped shift dress, Halter top, Short skirts, Hip-hugger pants, White mid-calf boots, Vinyl trimmed coats and suits, and Cigarette pantsuits.



He was the originator of the fifties bubble dresses. Italian born, he is also famous for innovative, contemporary designs that bordered on the unusual and futuristic in the 60s. He came up with the use of hammered metal jewelry, industrial zippers, and plastic in his creations. His styles included:  Thigh-high boots, Collarless jackets, Bright colored min-shift dresses, The Unisex cosmos suit, Skinny double-breasted suits, and Space-age designs.



Algeria born, he has had a great impact on the European fashion industry.

He contributed to many of the sixties fashion trends. Some of his most popular clothing styles include the Mondrian shift dress, Peacoat, Safari jacket, Women tuxedos, Sheer blouse, Jumpsuit, and Women smoking jackets



Known as the, "The Prince of Print" his designs were recognized for his

trademark "psychedelic look"- electric colors. Fashionable women and important personalities such as Jackie Kennedy, Sophia Loren, and Marilyn Monroe wore this styles. Best known for:   Palazzo pantsuits, Silk headscarves, Body-hugging mini-skirts, Silk jersey clothing, Cropped Capri Pants, Space-age inspired air hostess uniforms.




The "Quant Look" contained the silhouette mini skirt or mini shift dress, patent leather boots, colored opaque tights, a bob style haircut, prominent and dark eye makeup and false lashes. Her designs included the following:  Colorful raincoats, Boots with detachable tops, Mix and match separates, Tight mini-skirts, hot pants, Lounging pajamas, and Dresses/skirts with matching colorful tights.

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Vintage 1960's Tevision



Gunsmoke was a American radio and television program which first aired September 10, 1955. The stories take place in Dodge City, Kansas, during the settlement of the American West. The central character is lawman Marshall Matt Dillon, played by William Conrad on radio and James Arness on television.

          The radio series ran from 1952 to 1961was written by John Dunning. The television series ran for 20 seasons on CBS with 635 total episodes, from 1955 to 1975.

         During its second season in 1956, the program was on the list of the top ten television programs broadcast in The United States. It quickly moved to number one and stayed there until 1961. James Arness and Millburn Stone portrayed their Gunsmoke characters for 20 consecutive years. George Walsh, the announcer for the show, began in 1952 on radio's Gunsmoke and continued until television's Gunsmoke was canceled in 1975. The first seven seasons were jointly sponsored by L&M cigarettes and Remington shaving products.


Added note

James Arness has a brother, Peter Graves who starred in the TV series Mission Impossible.

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Vintage 1960s Music


Cathy's Clown

          Cathy's Clown was written and recorded by The Everly Brothers in 1960. The choruses were sung by brothers Don and Phil in their trademark close harmony style, while Don sings the bridges solo.

          It was noted for its unorthodox structure, such as beginning on a chorus and having bridges but no verses. The song was a worldwide success and the best-selling single of the Everly Brothers career. Due to its enduring influence on popular music the song was added to the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress in 2013.

          Cathy's Clown sold eight million copies worldwide, spending five weeks at number 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and one week on the R&B chart. The song spent seven weeks at number 1 on the UK Singles Chart in May and June 1960 and was the Everly Brothers' biggest-selling single and their third and final U.S. number 1 hit. Billboard ranked it as the number 3 song of the year for 1960.

          In 2004, it was ranked 149th Rolling Stone on the magazine's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. 

          Phil died January 3, 2014, in Burbank California from Lung Disease. Don is still alive and is 82 years old


An added note:

          In November 2018, a judge ruled that Don was the sole writer of Cathy's Clown, as Phil had relinquished his rights sometime before June 1980. Acuff-Rose Music, which owned the song publishing, and BMI (the brothers' rights society) removed Phil's name from all the royalty statements. In 2011, Don filed to regain ownership, with the estate of Phil following in 2014.


For a waltz down memory lane click on the link below:

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Vintage 1950s Scandal


The Sam Sheppard Case


Samuel Holmes "SamSheppard was an American neurosurgeon initially convicted for the murder of his wife, Marilyn Reese Sheppard.

          On the night of July 3, 1954, Sheppard and Marilyn were entertaining neighbors at their lakefront home on Lake Erie. While they were watching the movie Strange Holiday. Sam fell asleep on a daybed in the living room. Marilyn walked the neighbors out.

          In the early morning hours of July 4, 1954, Marilyn was bludgeoned to death in her bed with an unknown instrument. The bedroom was covered with blood spatter and drops of blood were found on floors throughout the house. According to Sheppard, he was sleeping soundly on the daybed when he heard the cries from his wife. He ran upstairs where he saw a form in the bedroom and then he was knocked unconscious. When he awoke, he saw the person downstairs, chased the intruder out of the house down to the lakeshore where they fought.  Sheppard has knocked unconscious again. He awoke with half his body in the lake.

          At 5:40 am, Sheppard called his neighbor. When they arrived, Sheppard was found shirtless and his pants were wet with a bloodstain on the knee. The authorities found Sheppard disoriented and in shock. The family dog was not heard barking to indicate an intruder, and their seven-year-old son, Sam Reese "Chip" Sheppard, was asleep in the adjacent bedroom during the whole ordeal.

          During the investigation it was revealed at trial that Sheppard had carried on a three-year  extramarital affair with Susan Hayes, a nurse at the hospital where Sheppard was employed. The prosecution argued that the affair was Sheppard's motive for killing his wife.  The autopsy also showed Marilyn was pregnant with a four-month-old male fetus.

          Other issues brought up at trial showed no sand in his hair when Sheppard claimed to have been sprawled at the beach, and his missing T-shirt, which the prosecutor speculated would or should contain some of Sheppard's blood. Prosecutor John J. Mahon made these assertions despite no T-shirt was ever found or presented as evidence.

          On December 21, after deliberating for four days, the jury found Sheppard guilty of second-degree murder. He was sentenced to life in prison. On January 7, 1955, shortly after his conviction, his mother, Ethel Sheppard committed suicide by gunshot. Eleven days later, Sheppard's father, Dr. Richard Sheppard, died of a bleeding gastric ulcer and stomach cancer. Sam Sheppard was permitted to attend both funerals but was required to wear handcuffs. In 1963, Sheppard's father-in-law, Thomas S. Reese committed suicide.


     Sheppard's attorney, William Corrigan spent six years making appeals but all were rejected. On July 30, 1961, Corrigan died and F. Lee Bailey took over as Sheppard's chief counsel. July 15, 1964 a U.S. district court  judge called the 1954 trial a "mockery of justice" that shredded Sheppard's Fourteenth Amendment rights to due process. The State of Ohio was ordered to release Sheppard on bond and gave the prosecutor 60 days to bring charges against him. Otherwise, the case would be dismissed permanently.  The state of Ohio appealed the ruling to aU.S. Court of Appeals Court for the 6th Circuit. On March 4, 1965, the Circuit Court reversed the federal judge's ruling.  Bailey appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which agreed to hear the case in Sheppard v. Maxwell. On June 6, 1966, the Supreme Court, by an 8-to-1 vote, struck down the murder conviction and said that the trial judge, Edward J. Blythin, who had died in 1958, was biased against Sheppard because Judge Blythin had refused to sequester the jury, did not order the jury to ignore and disregard media reports of the case, and told newspaper columnist Dorothy Kilgallen shortly before the trial started, "Well, he's guilty as hell. There's no question about it."

          Sheppard served ten years of his sentence. Three days after his release, he married Ariane Tebbenjohanns, a German divorcee who had corresponded with him during his imprisonment. They  divorced October 7, 1969.

          Jury selection for the retrial began October 24, 1966, and opening statements began eight days later. Media interest in the trial remained high, but this jury was sequestered. The prosecutor presented essentially the same case as was presented twelve years earlier. Bailey aggressively discredited each prosecution witness during cross-examination. In his closing argument, Bailey scathingly dismissed the prosecution's case against Sheppard as "ten pounds of hogwash in a five-pound bag". The trial was very important to Bailey's rise to prominence as a criminal defense lawyer.

          After his acquittal, Sheppard helped write the book Endure and Conquer, which presented his side of the case and gave insight into his years in prison.

          Six months before his death, Sheppard married Colleen Strickland. Towards the end of his life, Sheppard was reportedly drinking "as much as two-fifths of liquor a day" (1.5 liters). On April 6, 1970, Sheppard was found dead in his home in Columbus, Ohio. The official cause of death was Wernicke's encephalopathy (biochemical lesions in the brain caused by thiamine a deficiency). He was buried in Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens in Columbus, Ohio.

          Sheppard's son has devoted considerable time and effort towards attempting to clear his father's reputation.

          After ten weeks of trial, 76 witnesses, and hundreds of exhibits, the case went to the eight-person civil jury. The jury deliberated just three hours on April 12, 2000, before returning a unanimous verdict that Samuel Reese Sheppard had failed to prove that his father had been wrongfully imprisoned.   


          The television series The Fugitive and the1933 film of the same name 

has been cited as being loosely based on Sheppard's story. This claim has always been denied by their creators.


Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Vintage 1950s Food Casserole Sauce


Casserole Sauce

1/2 cup Best Foods or Hellmann's Real Mayonnaise
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup turkey gravy or bouillon
2 cups milk
paprika, salt, pepper

Combine mayonnaise with flour, turkey gravy or bouillon, milk, paprika, salt and pepper. Cook until thickened.

For casserole pictured: to sauce add 2 to 3 cups diced turkey, 1 1/2 cups cooked peas, 1 cup cooked chopped onion, 1 small can of mushrooms and their juice. Pour into greased casserole. Bake at 400˚F for 15 to 20 minutes. Serves 4.

For a creamier, richer white sauce add 1/4 cup of mayonnaise to 1 cup of white sauce.

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Vintage 1950s Cars Dodge Coronet

Dodge Coronet,

          The Coronet was an automobile that was marketed by Dodge as a full-size car  in the 1950s, initially the division's highest trim line but, starting in 1955, the lowes trim liner. From the 1965 to 1975 model years the name was on intermediate-sized models. A coronet is a small crown consisting of ornaments fixed on a metal ring.

          The 1955 Coronet dropped to the lower end of the Dodge vehicle lineup, with the Wayfarer and Meadowbrook names no longer used and the Custom Royal added above the Royal, Lancer, and La Femme  Bodies were restyled with help from newly hired Virgil Exner to be lower, wider, and longer than the lumpy prewar style, which in turn generated a healthy boost in sales over 1954.
          1956 was the last year of this body style before the change in 1957, the only differences offered in 1956 from the previous year were trim packages and the new Dodge S-500. suspension. Under the hood, the engine received larger valves, a full-race camshaft, and a double log intake manifold that used two four-barrel Carter WCFB carburetors and a shaved deck for 8.25:1 compression. This all added up to 285 bhp. It was the fastest car from the factory that year.
          1976 was the final model year for the Dodge Coronet, at least so far as the name Coronet was concerned. There were two body styles offered,  only two four-door models, the four-door wagon. and the four-door sedan. The former Dodge Coronet 2-door model  was replaced by the Dodge Charger Sport 2-door model.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Vintage 1950s Parties


          Picnics were a simple box lunch of sandwiches, a refreshing salad in covered watertight cartons, plenty of fruit, cookies or cake, and coffee and milk in vacuum bottles of your choice. Or you could carry along several sandwich spreads, plenty of bread, crackers, sliced tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, a pickle relish, etc., and let each person make his or her own sandwiches.

          However, if men were given a choice, most of them would probably vote for the picnic where they can cook at least one dish over the open fire. Folding portable grills which burned charcoal briquettes could be purchased for a reasonable sum. Those worked easily and efficiently on picnics and motor trips where you camped out.  The completed meal was served either buffet or sit-down style from a table set up on the lawn, or if you were on a blanket cuddled up on the beach, in a park or forest.

          Some were small family outings, but the memorable ones were the groups for 20 or more.
          The most common simple picnic consisted of a cold roast beef sandwiches, sliced Swiss cheese on rye bread, celery, olives, cut-up fruit (watermelon), cake, and coffee in a vacuum bottle. For large group,  ladies brought salads or desserts or cuts of meat to be cooked. Men toted the grills, baskets, buckets, and chairs, then took over cooking over an open fire.

Saturday, July 18, 2020

vintage 1950s Food Calico Slaw


I remember this being served at buffet dinners at neighbor's homes, but my mother never made it. It was delicious!

Calico Slaw

2 pkg. lemon Jello                                    1/4 cup diced pimentos
2 cup tomato juice (hot)                           1/4 cup diced green peppers
1/4 cup tomato juice (cold)                      1/4 cup diced celery
1 lemon juice and the zest                      3 cup shredded cabbage
1tsp onion salt                                          1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup mayonnaise

Dissolve Jello into hot tomato juice, blend cold tomato juice, water and onion salt, lemon rind, and juice with mayonnaise. Add to Jello mixture, beat until smooth.

Pour into ice cubes tray, chill until firm around the edges and still soft in center. Turn into a bowl and beat with mixer until fluffy and smooth. Fold in vegetables. Turn into 2 qt. mold, chill until set.
Serves 10-12

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Vintage 1950s Mysteries

Beverly Hills Bermuda Triangle

The properties around this triangle of land in Beverly Hills has taken on a mysterious aura.

 On July 7, 1946, Howard Hughes  took a prototype XF-11 reconnaissance aircraft on its maiden flight and crashed into a row of houses. He landed at 808 N. Whittier. 

On June 20, 1947, as Bugsy Siegel sat with his associate Allen Smiley at 801 N. Linden, reading the L. A. Times when an assailant fired at him through the window, hitting him many times, including twice in the head.

Jan Berry of Jan & Dean was in a near-fatal accident in a real-life Dead Man’s Curve on April 1, 1966. His Sting Ray car going 90 MPH crashed into an unexpected parked truck. The accident occurred just a short distance from the fictional site mentioned in the 1964 hit single “Dead Man’s Curve” released two years earlier. Was the song a foreshadow of what was to come?

On November 16, 2010, Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen was shot, multiple times, in her car at the corner of Sunset and Whittier. She careened into a street light at 815 N. Whittier. She died from 

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Vintage 1950s Food

Such an easy buffet  "show stopper".   Simple to make!

Salad Loaf

The bottom layer is raspberry gelatin filled with sliced RIPE bananas
The middle layer is lemon gelatin smoothed with cream cheese.
The top layer is lime-flavored gelatin with pineapple rounds cut in half and placed in the design.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Vintage 1950s Personalities

Audie Murphy
          While doing in-depth research into 1950s Hollywood for our Skylar Drake Mystery series, we came across Hollywood personalities that shocked and amazed us. Really. You can't make this stuff up!

F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote, "Show me a hero and I'll write you a tragedy."

          Audi Murphy was the most decorated U.S, soldier of WWII, returning home as a hero. He became an actor starring in his own story, To Hell and Back. Though he was only 21 years old at the end of the war, he had been wounded three times, had earned 33 awards and medals. After the war, he appeared in more than 40 films. He suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder throughout his life.

          LIFE magazine honored the brave, handsome soldier by putting him on the cover of its July 16, 1945 issue. That photograph inspired actor James Cagney to call Murphy and invite him to Hollywood to begin an acting career. Despite his celebrity, Murphy struggled for years to gain recognition.

          In 1949, Murphy published his autobiography, To Hell and Back. The book quickly became a national bestseller, and in 1955, after much inner debate, he decided to portray himself in the film version of his book. The movie was a hit and held Universal Studio's record as its highest-grossing motion picture until 1975. Murphy would go on to make 44 feature films in all. In addition to acting, he became a successful country music songwriter, and many of his songs were recorded by well-known artists, such as Dean Martin, Jerry Wallace and Harry Nilsson.      

          During his rise to fame, Murphy met and married 21-year old actress Wanda Hendrix in 1949. Their marriage ended in divorce in 1950. He married again in 1951, this time to Pamela Archer, with whom he had two children. Plagued by insomnia and nightmares, a condition that would eventually become known as post-traumatic stress disorder, Murphy became addicted to sleeping pills. In his later years, Audie Murphy squandered his fortune on gambling and bad investments and was in financial ruin.

          He died in a plane crash on May 28, 1971. The aircraft crashed into the side of Brushy Mountain, northwest of Roanoke, Virginia. Murphy was buried at Arlington National Cemetery on June 7, 1971, and was given full military honors.