Thursday, August 7, 2008

Dial P For Plaid

1952 cover of Fashion Sewing On a Budget

This is probably the mother of one of the young ladies in the Mary Maxim advertisement. This is where the strange and terrifying need to dress alike has its dark origins.

It is 1952 and this is the cover of Fashion Sewing On A Budget, a volume in the Homemaker's Encyclopedia Series. The title really ought to be Plaid Sewing On A Budget. Grace Kelly's mysterious imaginary twin sister, jealous of her Hollywood career, has decided to make her mark on the world by sewing an enormous number of red plaid dresses.

And she has initiated her daughter into the Cult of Red Plaid. I think that is her kid. Isn't it? Or does she hypnotize strange children into wearing her red plaid vest and skirt combos? Keep staring at this and it is like an endless mirroring of plaid within plaid within ever smaller plaid outfits. Next she'll sew one for the dog. And the cat. And the goldfish.

Better Dead than Red Plaid? Possibly...Depends on whether you wear red shoes with the outfit, because that might really be scary. You don't know what'll happen then! I'll bet Grace is thinking about it though. I'll bet she knows.

Perhaps this really IS Grace Kelly, in a scene from a lost Alfred Hitchcock movie. Dial P For Plaid...

The doll is clearly freaked out. She is about to try and make a break for freedom. Run, little doll, run like the wind! You can go join Betsy McCall and Saucy Walker in their doll commune. As long as you can bake or clean the floor or something, you should be all right.

[Note: I apologize for the lower left hand corner of this. When I bought the Homemaker's Encyclopedia series, the thrift store had pasted a large, obnoxious white price label right there. And with all the careful peeling thereof in the world, the result is as you see.]

Note, somewhat later: You can tell that I am very fond of this picture, since it is my Entrecard avatar and I have made some banners with it and - I do like my ersatz Grace Kelly and her mad plaid obsession very much!

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