Category Archives: girls

Girls Be Like Stylin’! (Part II)

Last August, when I posted the first part of this theme,  I knew it would require at least several installments.  It was quite clear that just once would not be enough.  As a matter of fact, as I peer into the distant future I don’t see even a hint of when it will end.

Think of it as an homage to the imagination, creativity, and downright passion with which women throw themselves into their wardrobes.  I wouldn’t be surprised if some of you will come away from this post inspired to achieve even more than you have already.

(God save us).

Well, in for a penny, in for a pound so let’s raise the curtains and open up the runway!

painting of two Georgian ladies by Spanish painter Cristobal de Antonio

The Basket of Roses, by Cristobal de Antonio, ca. 1900.

Oh, my!

Would you like to dress up like this?  Wouldn’t it be fun?  Every day?  This is an eye catching glimpse of another time and another world and I’m thinking of adding it our already amazing note card line-up.

Besides, I think the one on the right likes me.

Now let us take a quantum leap across the vast social divide to something a little more homespun:

Cover of Girl Watcher Magazine with two rather lusty busty girls

My how things change

What can one say?  Well, actually one can say a lot but I’m holding my tongue, or at least restraining my fingers.  I did make this into a note card but haven’t yet offered it to the public.  Even I haven’t even found anyone I could send it to yet, but I’m not giving up.

By the way, the one on the right is June Wilkinson, a real “blonde bombshell” of the ’50s and ’60s. She was born in England and made it to the stage at the infamous Windmill Theare in London.  At age 15 she was the theatre’s youngest topless dancer.  When she toured the U.S. she was snapped up by Hugh Heffner and was subsequently featured many times in Playboy.  She did fairly well in Hollywood too, appearing in at least a half dozen films, including the must-see Macumba Love..

“Love Goddess” indeed.

OK, from here on it’s all downhill so you can call the kids back into the room; you’ll all enjoy what’s coming up next!

Woman dressed in a club costume

Club Costume, ca 1920

She looks like someone made her do this.

We recommend this card be used as an invitation to go clubbing.  I can’t think of much else it’s good for except a laugh.  Do you have friends who really like to play cards?  The esteem in which they hold you will soar when you send them this card.  Go ahead, show them  you care!  (You can order vast quantities, or just one, by clicking on the image.)

A 20s flapper wearing an owl  mask

Owl Girl by E. Rousselet

I haven’t found much biographical information on E. Rousselet even though he did seem to have achieved a certain amount of success in the early 1900s with his pastel portraits and illustrations.  This young lady appears to be perfectly serious and confident in her stylish owl mask.  Perhaps it’s just the thing for your next job interview.

A woman in a feathered hat

I think she’s on to something here!  But wait, I don’t remember ever seeing anything like this before or since so maybe she’s not.  She could be though, if just enough of you joined the fashion parade until the need for this hat reaches critical mass.  She kind of reminds me of the dimes I used to have in my pocket as a kid:

mercury dime

Edith La sylphe

Edith “La Sylphe” in her S-Bend Corset

Edith Langerfeld was born in New York in 1873 of a German father and an Irish Mother, a combination that was sure to produce some interesting results.  She became a ballerina and eventually a huge Vaudevillian dance attraction, particularly practiced in the Eastern dance style popularly known as the “Houchee Couchee“.  Here she’s wearing a type of corset that was actually thought to be more healthy than the regular straight kind but of course was not.  I would have paid a silver dollar to see her dance!

[Pause to get my breath back.]

Zelda Boden (Photo by Frederick W. Glasier}

Zelda Boden (Photo by Frederick W. Glasier}

As long we’re touching on show biz, let’s take a look at Zelda, a girl who really knew how to put on the Ritz.  Zelda was a big attraction with Barnum and Bailey’s circus back in the teens and twenties of the last century.  The girl had flair, no doubt about it, and I know she’d be a great dinner guest.

Roller Derby Girl

Just what is this girl doing?

I have had her note card up and for sale for some time, identifying  her as a roller derby  player.  I’ve since changed my mind and believe the original information I received was in error.  Deanna over at the Kitschslapped blog thinks she may have been a supporter of an English soccer team nicknamed the “Black Cats” and just happens to be wearing skates.  Her reasoning makes more sense than the roller derby guess so I think I’m going to have to do some revising of my captions.  In any case, the sartorial splendor of this young lady is commendable and she has certainly earned her spot in this post.

Theatre Magazine Cover

Cover of Theatre Magazine, June, 1925

Theatre Magazine had some of the most gorgeous covers of the ’20s and this one is a great example.  This Spanish lady is taking a break from her soulful strumming to pose for the artist in a most colorful and sumptuous way.  I must confess that at times my choices are driven by such use of color as this.  I would have loved to been a photographer in the artist’s studio!

Poster for Parfum Luzy

Poster for Parfum Luzy

Now this is a simple yet exceedingly dramatic use of a sheet of red silk!  Luzy’s perfume, “Crimson Antique” could hardly be illustrated in a more fashionable way than with this poster done by Leonetto Capiello, one of the most innovative graphic artists of the early 20th century.

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Well, it seems I have once again over-indulged my fancy here .  I hope you can share at least a bit of enthusiasm and fascination with me for this antique imagery.  Although there must be a finite number of such images, “new” ones don’t ever seem to stop showing up on my screen, so stick with me, I promise you and your eyes will have a good time!

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Pistol Packin’ Mamas

While perusing my archive of images looking for ideas for my next post, I realized that over the years I have accumulated a fun little collection of images featuring “girls with guns”.  This was a very reasonable thing for me to do since 1.)  I’ve never seen one I didn’t like; and 2.) they comprise two of my favorite things in the whole world.

Inevitably, several found their way into the Greetings from Other Worlds note card collection. To wit:

Miss May Lillie

Miss May Lillie

Now that’s what they call a “dead-eye”!  Once Miss May had her sights on you I’m inclined to believe she didn’t miss.  She was born Mary E. “May” Manning in 1869 and was an American sharpshooter and equestrian who traveled the country billed as the “Champion Horseback Shot of the West“.

Of course there was another young filly who could also claim that title:

Annie Oakley

Annie Oakley

“Little Sure Shot” ( a nickname given her by Sitting Bull when they both toured with Buffalo Bill), is often considered America’s first female superstar.  Whether she could outshoot Miss May will have to remain one of those unanswered debates of America History – serious American history.

The notion of American women of the “wild west” being so handy with shootin’ irons stirred considerable interest on the other side of the Atlantic, particularly in England.  Not having the advantage of actually being able to see one in action, this artist used his imagination to depict his lovely “Queen of the Ranch”:

Queen of the Ranch

Queen of the Ranch

This young cow girl was part of a fanciful collection of what the artist (or his editors) thought the West must have been like.  It was included as a trading card in packs of cigarettes around the turn of the century.

America’s attention had been grabbed before by a gun totin’ woman in the person of the infamous “Queen of the Oklahoma Outlaws” Belle Starr.  She was definitely one pistol packin’ mama whose sights you didn’t want to be in.  Could this have been meant to be her?

The Belle of the West

The Belle of the West

The stereotype of women being afraid of guns has been thoroughly trounced for some time, and the above ladies were just a well-known few of the many who have proved to be handy and/or deadly with a heater.  One of the most obvious is this young femme fatale:

Bonnie Parker

Bonnie Parker, ca. 1933

If Clyde Barrow had gone on his crime spree without Miss Parker he probably would have ended up as just another sorry crook in a long list of miscreants much more colorful than he.  But to his eternal credit and good fortune (?), he added sex-appeal to his rambunctious doings by recruiting Bonnie, who was neither afraid of guns or cigars.

Now here’s a serious and tragic bit of history:

Armenian Women with Rifles

Portrait of two Armenian fighters during the Hamidian Massacres, 1895

If ever there was a tragic, sad, and thoroughly repugnant moment in modern history, the massacre of Armenians and Assyrian Christians by the Turks in the middle 1890s must rank high on the list.  I don’t want to talk about it so I recommend you read about it HERE.  It will certainly explain the photo above.  These two women look like they were fully capable of sending more than a few jihadists to perdition and I hope they did.

Now let’s step on the other side of the line that separates the good from the bad and take a look at a woman not afraid to handle a bad guy.

woman policeman with criminal

Woman Policeman, ca. 1909

As I understand it, back then the NYPD was toying with the idea of putting gun carrying women “policemen” on the beat.  This is part of a series of photos meant to illustrate the forward looking idea to a public that probably wasn’t ready for it yet.

Here’s a gun club worth joining:

4 women with pistols

A True Gang of “Pistol Packin’ Mamas”

I sort of wish the one on the left would raise her sights a bit.

In the ’60s LIFE magazine ran a story on women and guns and this was their cover photo.  I bet it sold out!

A Girl and Her Gun

A Girl and Her Gun

The image of a woman, or women, with guns has been used innumerable times to raise the temperature of men and thereby sell a piece of literature that might have otherwise languished on the stands.  It was just a plain and simple technique that worked every time (I’m speaking for myself, you understand).

Let’s finish up with just a few colorful examples:

Book cover: sinner's shroud

The Ladies’ Version of Concealed Carry

pulp fiction cover

Another  Nominee for the Pulp Fiction Cover Hall of Fame

Gun Molls Magazine

They even had their own magazine!

Notice it’s a “Real Publication”.  Nice garter too.

I hope you’ve enjoyed our tour through an oh so inspiring chapter of Feminine History; I know I have.  In fact, I have no doubt that you have already picked out a few recipients for these cards; just click on the ones you want and be taken to the appropriate page at my Etsy shop.  If it doesn’t go there it’s because I haven’t made a card of it yet.  In that case simply sweet talk me and I’ll make one just for you!

Now, do not miss the fine audio visual performances below; they will make your day!

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Filed under annie oakley, belle star, firearms, girls, greeting cards, guns, history, Miss May Lillie, note cards, Photography, pistol packin' mama, the past

In Living Color

The theme for today (besides the usual oddness) is old time color!

Many of our favorite images from the past are in black and white, for obvious reasons.  Also, many of our favorite images from the past are in color.  From the latter we have chosen today’s show.

To get started, I want you to get an eyeful of this:

Back Exercise

Assume position as shown. Then strain with arms, resisting with the legs.

English cigarette companies used to pack trading cards with their coffin nails and their themes spanned almost the whole gamut of human experience.  The breath taking illustration above was part of a series that endeavored to teach various exercises in which one could engage after having smoked a few cigarettes.  Whether it is necessary or not to do it on a small round table rather than on the floor is not mentioned.  Perhaps it is optional.

“Doesn’t the exciting image above pander too much to the guys?”  I hear you mutter.  Just in case it does, here  you go, girls!

Developing the Biceps

Developing the Biceps

Looks like we’ll have to keep buying ciggies to find the card that shows us how to develop some guns like these.  But I think it will be worth it.  Maybe the source for the cool workout attire will be given us too.

So, can you imagine how you might use the above cards?  I can recommend a few possibilities:

1.  How about sending one to the fitness fanatics in your crowd?  They’ll appreciate your encouragement!

2.  Or perhaps you should send them to your relatives named Edna and Nigel, just because;

3.  Or to announce your recent hiring by Gold’s Gym;

4.  Or maybe just to elicit from someone one of the most healthful exercise possible:  a smile!

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Somewhere in England in the late 1800’s there was an artist who was told to develop a line of trading cards illustrating America’s Wild West.  I doubt the man had been further west than Liverpool but he gave it a game try.  Here’s my favorite:

Cow girl, Queen of the Ranch

Queen of the Ranch

Head over heels, that’s what I am for this lady!  Know any closet rough and ready cowgirls? If you do, send them this card to let them know you’re on to them!

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Let’s class it up a bit.

La Dormeuse by Tamara De Lempicka

“La Dormeuse” by Tamara de Lempicka

Tamara de Lempicka is an artist of the ’20s and ’30s that you might want to investigate further.  I’m certainly a fan of her work and just couldn’t resist inserting this piece.  If you’d like to see more of her, go HERE

magazine cover by leyendecker

Life Magazine cover by Frank X. Leyendecker

This is just an all-around good card to send anyone for any reason.  You should always have a good stock of them on hand.

Benda life cover

Life Magazine cover by Wladyslaw Benda, 1922

From Hearst's International magazine, July, 1922

From Hearst’s International magazine, July, 1922

“The man gave Peggy a long, keen look as though searching his memory. Peggy’s brain sped backward. ‘Yes it’s me,’ she said. ‘I’ve wondered what it would have been like for me if that shark got you.’”

I know what it’s like, Peggy.  Sometimes my brain speeds backwards too.

Here’s one of our all-time sellingest cards.  It just works for a lot of people.

6Swans

Six Swans

This beautiful image was published in 1913 and is the work of Warwick Goble, a popular illustrator of children’s books in the early 20th century. The Six Swans is a story by the Brothers Grimm about six brothers who were turned into swans and could only retake their human form for fifteen minutes every night. Do you know anyone who has this dilemma?

You I know you must have seen something here you just can’t live without – ‘fess up and stock up!

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And it’s not over yet – here’s one more little delight I know you’ll enjoy:

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Girls Be Like Stylin’! (Part I)

Theda Bara as Cleopatra (1917)

Theda Bara as Cleopatra (1917)

Hang on, we’re going for a ride!

It’s time we paid a visit to those ladies of the past who either had a flare for dressing themselves up or were just plain tasteless.  Either way, we love ’em!

I must confess that I sell these cards because I am completely entranced by the old images.  They are a habit I can’t quit.  And one of the grand reasons are the women – if they aren’t cause enough to want to time travel, nothing is.

As usual, many of these images are now available as ultra-cool note cards. You just  need to click on the image to see if it’s available at my Etsy shop.  If it doesn’t appear to be, just contact me and perhaps we can arrange something.

OK,  here we go!

Esme Dancing by Beatrice Offor, 1907

“Esme Dancing”, by Beatrice Offor, 1907

 

Beatrice Offor was an English portraitist of the late 19th and early 20th century.  She painted women almost exclusively and almost always in lavish, other worldly views.

 

 

 

 

A Zepplin Ice Skater

A Zeppelin Ice Skater

 

 

 

 

This Fräulein was light on  her feet, and for good reason.  Of course, I know you  know the fantastic story of the Zeppelin Ice Skaters, so I won’t bother repeating it to you here.

Bag Head Babes

Bag-headed Babes

I know there’s a joke in here somewhere.

A charcoal drawing by wladyslaw Benda

Women on Zebras, a Charcoal by Wladyslaw Benda

The work of Benda is among my favorites and this one in particular drives me crazy.

Folies Bergere Dancer

A Dancer from the 1910 Folies Bergère

 

 

Few things say “Belle Epoque” as succinctly as the Folies Bergère, and this girl pretty much epitomizes the Folies. Imagine going to work every night on the Metro dressed like this!  Well, a girl’s gotta pay the price if she’s gonna be stylin’!  (Use this card for the invitations to your Halloween party!)

 

 

 

 

Geishas at the Beach

Beach Geishas

 

And now we move to the Exotic Far East, where this year’s daring swimsuit selection is attractively displayed by three of Kanucha Bay’s most sought after Geishas. Relax and soak in the Pacific sun’s life-giving rays as the waves gently wash upon the shores and soothe your frazzled nerves! (Having a pool party? Use this for your invitation!)

 

 

 

 

Girl with big hair

Big Hair (1907)

 

 

 

Some girls wear hats and some don’t.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Suzy Beryl, in "Coeurs en Folie" Photo by Walery,

 

 

Suzy Beryl was a big star of the Folies Bergere and she apparently acted like it judging from this photo.  This is a costume she wore for “Coeurs en Folie”, designed by Erté.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you don’t think someone you know and love won’t think special thoughts about you when you send them one of these cards, you’ve got another thought coming!  (Click HERE to see our entire collection!)

Now for the pièce de résistance:

NancyGoodaim

Now this girl be stylin’!

Don’t snicker – this is a “TRUE life scientifiction” of Nancy’s adventures.  It says so.  The only thing that bugs me is that I wanted to write “Space Slaves of Venus”.

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Now, put the kiddies to bed.  It’s time for some adult entertainment:

 

Important Disclaimer:  I do not approve of or encourage the kind of grammar I used to title this post.

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Filed under art, fashion, girls, greeting cards, history, note cards, Photography, styles, the past, Uncategorized, women