Vintage Inn focuses on vintage topics from the 1920s-1960s. With features on vintage Images, vintage Canadian History (fun and interesting topics), vintage lifestyle posts (hair, clothes, household items, events), vintage travel and so much more.
Last week I did a post on Vintage Cruise Line Advertising (1930s-1950s) and this week I want to share inspiration on what one could wear WHILE Cruising the seas or oceans. Of course theses are all going to be images & advertising from the 1930s to the 1950s that are meant to inspire your wardrobe, but I also want to share some clothes from Unique Vintage and Etsy that you can buy right now (because shopping is fun!).
I have also decided it’s going to be my blogging mission to change some people’s minds on what to wear when on a cruise. Let’s glam it up like Marilyn & Jane in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.
Disclosure: Some of the links on my blog from Etsy & Unique Vintage are Affiliate Links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
1934 summer cruise wardrobe. You would differently turn heads if you came out onto the Lido deck in one of these numbers.
1930s UK Womens Fashion Magazine Plate. “You need this little Jumper. And even if you don’t cruise this Spring, you’ll want it just the same”.
All aboard! Edward Steichen captures cruise liner life on ‘Lurline’ in 1934.
Source: Vogue Australia
Excerpt on Cruising in the 1930s from ‘Cruising the Past’
Women cruisers were reminded that they will probably be going ashore, so they will need appropriate clothes for the ports they visit, as well as evening dress for dining on board: “Don’t misjudge your destination. Havana . . . is a metropolitan city, where you should be dressed as circumspectly as in Boston. In some places, . . . you might want to stop in at the big hotel for tea. Better wear a more conventional costume [than “your little deck dress”] and be ready! Only if you know your ground can you be casual about your clothes. If you plan to grab bicycles the minute you get off the dock in Bermuda and ride all day, then your culotte skirt would be completely comfortable and appropriate.”
1935-Enjoying the sunshine on the deck of the cruise ship Orion, Brisbane.
On Etsy right now are these lovely 1930s/1940s shorts that would be perfect for your next trip.
Lord & Taylor “100% Right for your Bermuda Cruise” Advertisement. “What a well dressed school girl will wear in Bermuda if she’s lucky….”
Suspender Dress with a striped cotton blouse for comfort and style. But don’t forget the suit. It’s vital for your cruise & touring wardrobe.
A wonderful jacket will look good over any party dress.
“Culottes are smartest”- Exclusive Tennis Culotte Dress.
Don’t forget to pack your Reversible Raincoat! And your flannel short-slacks of course (flannel???).
A wrap is a MUST when on the boat, it can get quite chilly on the water. This 1950s Vintage Summer Dress with Wrap will do the trick (avail on Etsy at time of posting).
This 1950s photo of a group of people playing ring games on the deck of a cruise ship, is a mix of sportswear & daytime casual for the women & men.
Don’t be afraid to rock a stylish suit men! Even during the day.
Dressing up for dinner and dancing was a must!
Here is a vintage number that will make a statement when you enter the dining room at night (or to dance like in the above photo). A stunning evening gown from the 1950s with matching reversible jacket (avail on Etsy).
Lastly here is a cute 1950s Style White & Navy Sailboat Island Print Hedda Swing Dress from Unique Vintage that I just had to share. Adorable!
Question Time: What is your travel or cruising style? Share in the comments below.
I love to travel because seeing the world is just something that I have to do! And when I travel, I like to get on a plane to my destination and then explore and find hidden gems with no schedule in sight. Cruise ship life is not something I’m ready for (but I’m sure I will be at some point in my life).
However! if the cruises are anything like what is advertised on these 1930s-1950s travel ads and posters, I just might have to change my mind. Glamorous and even more glamorous. Let’s see what I’m talking about friends.
Disclosure: Some of the links on my blog from Etsy are Affiliate Links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Visit Hawaii with Matson Cruise Lines-1934 (That Dress!).
And again in 1953. How tropical!
“Life at sea is friendly…delightful…on the new “4 Aces”. American Export Lines – 1949.
1930s summer fashions on display as Italian Lines cruises you around the Mediterranean.
1951 Cunard Cruise Ad – Couple Dancing in the ballroom. Looks like a fun time.
Getting there is half the fun! Cunard 1952. Balloon Games! I’m in!
“Every day is play day on an Alcoa ship in the Caribbean”, 1947.
Source: Duke University Library
1953 American President Lines Cruise Advertisement. Cruise the Pacific on a country club afloat to Honolulu, Yokohama, Manila, Hong Kong, Kobe.
“Come aboard for all the fun of France.” 1957 French Line Cruises.
1953 Cunard Cruise ad. Getting there is half the fun! A crowd of happy travelers are enjoying the many fun activities aboard ship.
1951 Moore McCormack Lines Ad. 4 Special winter cruises for 1952 from Moore McCormack include a 38 day cruise to Punta Del Este, Uruguay and a 44 day cruise to see Carnival in Rio.
Take a cruise on Canadian Pacific to see the Great Lakes-1930s.
No need to just sit around and be bored, cruise ship life has so much to do..like tennis and games by the pool. 1951 Matson Hawaii Cruise Ad.
Vintage 1953 Moore McCormack Cruise Lines Ad. Take a 38-Day Cruise to Trinidad, Rio, Santos, Sao Paulo, Montevideo, and Buenos Aires for old world enchantment and cities as modern as tomorrow.
Thanks for stopping by friends! I hope you enjoyed stepping back into time and seeing how travel advertising for cruising was like. I know I enjoyed seeing all that glamour I mentioned at the start of the post.
Question time: Have you been on a cruise? If yes, what did you like about and where did you go? Share in the comments below.
While browsing Flickr, I stumbled upon the most delightful of online photos albums from ‘kirinqueen‘, entitled ‘Old Family Photos-Andersons, Paschalls, etc 1930s, 1940s‘. It’s a collection of images of men, women and children of various ages, in uniforms, classic 1940s fashions and hairstyles, home décor and of course love of family. I’m kind of obsessed with these snapshots and just HAD to share with all of my readers for ‘Vintage Photo Tuesday‘ some of my favourite photos.
Now due to the large amount of photos on this account I’m breaking this post into a couple of parts. This week’s is going to focus on Doris-The Flickr account owners grandmother (seen below).
Doris in Virginia Beach with Friend, September 1940.
Doris Graduates from Highschool in June 1941.
Doris & Betty (that was my grandmothers nickname).
November 1941. Doris & Betty’s awesome fashion sense is making me seriously want to find a time machine and ask if I can browse their closets.
I’m so feeling Doris victory rolls, pants and blouse combo. Stunning 1940s style! And in the second photo Betty in pants and blouse as well.
Villard & Doris, July 25th 1942. LOVE Doris summer outfit. This handsome couple would go on to marry on April 15th, 1944.
D & B Chillin on the front step with another man in uniform.
Doris with her mother and their handbags.
A stylish 2 piece suit never goes out of style. I wonder where our dear Doris is going all dressed up?
I LOVE that Doris is such a pants wearing woman. While I am more of a skirt kind of gal (mostly due to being 6′ tall and not wanting to fight to find pants), I am a big fan of this look.
D & B hit the beach..well rocks in this photo, August 29th, 1943.
Villard & Doris, Summer 1944. That Dress!
Villard spending time with Doris while on leave.
D & B all dressed up with somewhere to go.
Super Spring Fashion Inspiration.
At least from the pictures, it looked like our Doris lived quite a life filled with friends, family and adventures. I hope you enjoyed this post friends!
Now there are so many marvelous photos of Doris that it’s just not possible to share it all here. So for the rest of the photos (there is 450 total and not all of ‘D’) please visit the album HERE. OR stay tuned to my next Vintage Photo Tuesday on “Betty”.
Question Time: What photo did you love of Doris Friends? Share in the comments below.
Hi fans of the Vintage Inn! I have been meaning to do this post for quite some time and a recent comment on another blog post about names that should be mentioned, have motivated me to get off my blogging butt and do a part 2!
Now onto our next group of talented women singers and dancers from the 1930s & 1940s that you need to know.
Note: This is going to be mostly a high level overview of what these women are known for during this time period (with a slight venture in the 1920s & 1950s). I will supply further reading for each women at the end of their feature (only if avail).
Hazel Scott- Pianist & the first African-American to have her own Television Show.
Source: Media Diversified
A talent from a very young age on the piano (and other instruments), Hazel’s career started to really take off at the age of 16 when she began to perform for various radio programs and various other engagements.
Throughout the 1930s and 1940s, Scott performed jazz, blues, ballads, Broadway and boogie-woogie songs, and classical music in various nightclubs. From 1939 to 1943 she was a leading attraction at both the downtown and uptown branches of Café Society (A club that treated black & White customers equally). Her performances created national prestige for the practice of “swinging the classics.” By 1945, Scott was earning $75,000 ($1,043,762 today) a year (Source).
In addition to Lena Horne, Scott was also one of the first Afro-Caribbean women (she was originally born in Trinidad in 1920s but moved to Harlem in 1924) to garner respectable roles in major Hollywood pictures (playing herself).
July 3, 1950 , Scott became the first black woman to host her own, 15 minute 3 X’s a week television show (Source). She would play piano and vocals and often sang tunes in one of the 7 languages she spoke.
A review in Variety stated, “Hazel Scott has a neat little show in this modest package. Most engaging element in the air is the Scott personality, which is dignified, yet relaxed and versatile.”
The show would only be on air for a few short months, but that did not diminish the accomplishment she had achieved.
Hazel Scott’s FULL story is fascinating and a must read for everyone (including her commitment to Civil Rights). Lucky for us, so many articles have been written about this amazing woman and here is just one from the Smithsonian Magazine. Please take a few minutes after this blog post and give her life a read.
Now without further adieu, I’m going to let Hazel show you what she could do..WOW!
~#The great Hazel Scott in The Heat's On 1943 - YouTube
Mary Lou Williams-The First Lady Of Jazz
Mary Lou Williams contains within herself the full essence of jazz.”
New York Times
Mary Lou was a child prodigy, who taught herself to play the piano by ear. She was playing in public by the age of six and was a professional musician by her early teens. As a pianist, composer and arranger, Mary Lou mastered blues, boogie-woogie, swing, bebop and even free jazz with remarkable facility.
In 1927, Mary Lou married saxophonist John Williams who went on to join ‘Andy Kirk and his Twelve Clouds of Joy‘ a short while later. Williams herself also signed up with the group and by the 1930s was a regular member of Kirk’s band.
At a time when there were very few women instrumentalists in jazz, she was soon recognized as Kirk’s top soloist, and the band’s success in the 1930s was due in large part to Williams’ distinctive arrangements, compositions, and solo performances. She was responsible for some of the bands biggest hits, including “Froggy Bottom,” “Walkin’ and Swingin’,” and “Lotta Sax Appeal.” In addition to her work with the Clouds, Williams provided arrangements for many of the top bandleaders of the swing era (Source).
Read all about the rest of Mary Lou Williams Life HERE. A woman who in her career that spanned past the 1930s & 40s’ wrote hundreds of compositions and arrangements and recorded more than one hundred records (in 78, 45, and LP versions).
Consuela Harris was, according to the very rare source on lMDb (rare indeed. There is nothing on this talented woman beyond this post and a couple of videos), “the sensational and best of the shake, hot, swinging dancers in the 1930s. She was a New York headliner who performed at the famous Sebastian’s Cotton Club in California and other New York highlights during this time.
Harris was one of the rare dancer, who told a story with her dancing. Flexible and graceful she was. Consuela appeared showing off her dancing talents in two Oscar Micheaux films, “Swing” (video below) from 1938 and “God’s Stepchildren” also from 1938. She was also in the movie, “Harlem on the Prairie” with Herb Jeffries.” (Source).
Hopefully one day, someone will pickup her story and tell the world all that they know (the Vintage Inn is waiting in anticipation).
Marie Bryant- An American dancer, singer and choreographer
Just like the other women on this list, Marie started performing at a young age to various audiences (like her church) and would go on to make her professional debut at the age of 15 in 1934 with Louis Armstrong at the Grand Terrace Café in Chicago, dancing and singing with the floor show (Source).
By 1939 she was a featured attraction at the famous Apollo Theatre in Harlem, NY and even toured nationally with Duke Ellington. Her career took a more active turn in the 1940s appearing in various movies and touring musical revues.
Not content to just be okay with those roles Marie also began working as a teacher at a dance school run by the famous Katherine Dunham where she worked with Debbie Reynolds, Cyd Charisse, Betty Grable, Ava Gardner and others. When she worked with Gene Kelly, he called her “one of the finest dancers I’ve ever seen in my life”.
During this same time period, she worked as a dance coach and choreographer for Paramount, 20th Century Fox, MGM and Columbia, and developed her own dance teaching style which she called “controlled release.”
It appears that the word “rest” was never in Marie’s vocabulary.
Duke Ellington once referred to Marie as “one of the world’s greatest dancers.” And from the below clip of Marie singing and dancing in a 1942 Soundie: Bli-Blip, I would not disagree with the Duke (or Gene).
Soundie: Bli-Blip (1942, Duke Ellington and His Orchestra, Marie Bryant, Paul White) - YouTube
For further Reading on Marie Bryant’s career 1950s and on, visit HERE (please note the videos in this post don’t work but the content is informative).
Mildred Bailey-The Queen of Swing
Mildred Bailey was a Native American jazz singer during the 1930s, nicknamed “The Queen of Swing”, “The Rockin’ Chair Lady” and “Mrs. Swing”. She is known for her light soprano voice, clear articulation, and jazz phrasing. As a singer Bailey was especially influenced by Ethel Waters and Bessie Smith, and she was one of the first nonblack performers to become a skilled jazz singer.
Her career really took off after Bing Crosby (who was partners with her brother) introduced her to Paul Whiteman (an American Bandleader) who invited her to sing with his band. She would be the front woman from 1929-1933.
Whiteman also had a popular radio program for Old Gold Cigarettes, and when Bailey debuted on it with her version of “Moanin’ Low” on August 6, 1929, favorable public reaction was immediate. However, Bailey’s first recording with Whiteman did not take place until October 6, 1931 when she recorded a song called “My Goodbye to You”. Her recording of “All of Me” with Whiteman the same year was a huge hit in 1932 (Source).
After Mildred left Whitemans band in 1933, she would go on to record with various popular big bands (like Benny Goodman and the Dorsey Brothers).
In 1933, Mildred met her third husband Red Norvo (a vibraphonist, improviser, and band leader). A dynamic couple, they were married until 1942, and were known as “Mr. and Mrs. Swing”. They lived and worked much of the time in New York City. They remained friends after their divorce. Thereafter, she worked as a solo act, singing in New York clubs, such as the Café Society and the Blue Angel. In 1944 she had her own radio show on CBS which aired from September 1944 until February 1945. Her last major engagement was with Joe Marsala in Chicago in 1950 (Source).
Mildred Bailey was truly a talented and outstanding singer. Please take a moment to enjoy just some of her music below and for further reading on Mildred’s career and successes visit HERE.
Friends, I hope you enjoyed reading about these outstanding women during the Big Band Era. They were really something weren’t they?
Now don’t forget that this is NOT everyone just a highlight of that era. If there is someone I missed from this post or my original post, please share in the comments below I always love hearing about outstanding women.
Recently (like last weekend) I was just in Belgium for 3 days for my birthday and to see a friend. During this whirlwind trip we spent my actual birthday (May 4th) in Brussels, sightseeing and day drinking Belgium beer (yum). I have never been to this country and therefore never to Brussels and it was fantastic! What a beautiful city.
During our 1 day visit, we heard there was a Rockabilly festival under the famous Atomium and decided to end our trip checking the music out and of course this fascinating structure in the below photo.
The Atomium is on Heysel Plateau which is the original grounds of the 1958 Brussels World Fair (and what this weeks blog post is about). Designed by the engineer André Waterkeyn and architects André and Jean Polak, the nine spheres (which was the main pavilion) represent an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times.
It symbolized the democratic will to maintain peace among all the nations, faith in progress, both technical and scientific and, finally, an optimistic vision of the future of a modern, new, super-technological world for a better life for mankind (Source).
Isn’t it cool?! Trust me when I say…see this in person if you ever visit. It’s pretty darn amazing.
After we left, I was still blown away by what I saw and decided that I wanted to learn more about the 58 Expo and report back to my readers with pictures, advertising and even videos.
Lets see what I found….
Philips Pavilion -Source: Wikipedia
Fun Facts: The 1958 Fair was the first major World Expo registered under the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) after World War II. Attendance was 51, 454, 412 over 500 acres and ran from April 7th to October 19th 1958.
Highlight of The National Pavilions
The Canada Pavilion.
The US Pavilion was quite spacious and included a fashion show with models walking down a large spiral staircase, an electronic computer that demonstrated a knowledge of history, and a color television studio behind glass (Source).
Expo 58 visitors crossing a pedestrian bridge over a three-dimensional scale map of the Belgian landscape, on display near its pavilion in July 1958.
The Soviet pavilion was a large impressive building which they folded up and took back to Russia when Expo 58 ended. They had a facsimile of Sputnik which mysteriously disappeared, and they accused the US of stealing it (Source). OHHHHH….Interesting!
Fun Fact. The autograph of Mozart’s Requiem was placed on display. At some point, someone was able to gain access to the manuscript, tearing off the bottom right-hand corner of the second to last page (folio 99r/45r), containing the words “Quam olim d: C:”. As of 2012 the perpetrator has not been identified and the fragment has not been recovered (Source).
Glass and ceramics pavilion.
United Nations Pavilion. All the Mid Century Modern Architecture is so fantastic, I’m loving these photos!
Now for a couple of videos showing the Expo in “real time”.
Lastly it’s important for me to mention that the fair was not all fun, the expo also had a horrible exhibit some people were calling the Human Zoo. I’m not going to go into details on this, but you can read about it here. Lets just say…not okay.
Question time: Have you ever been to Brussels? What did you love about it if you have? How about an Expo? Share in the comments below.
One of my favourite posts to put together was on ‘1940s Street Style‘. It was fun to browse images and see what everyday folks wore to go shopping, out to dinner, on vacation etc. No pajama pants and track pants here.
The response to this post was so positive, that I decided to do it again with a 1950s version featuring men, women and even children being their stylish selves.
Let the fashion inspiration begin!
Disclosure: Some of the links on my blog from Etsy are Affiliate Links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
A gingham dress in Atlantic City. Or is it? Maybe our lovely lady is actually in a photo booth in her hometown far far away? What do you think?
3 Generations of 50s men (while technically one is a little man) sitting on their car for a family photo.
April 1955- Snapshot of teen girls with adorable short haircuts and wearing full skirt dresses (one even has pockets!).
Hong Kong, 1950s. I am literally drooling over this woman’s look. Such style! And can we talk about the mid century design in the background? Yooza! This photo is just the best.
Vintage Snapshot Photo: Matching Dresses, 1954.
One cool 50s guy.
1950s Summer Fashions on display at the campground. What gorgeous ladies!
Heading out to a formal event in a formal dress-1959.
Cool sunglasses makes an already stylish outfit even better-August 1957.
Young couple strolling down the street.
Wow what style everyone had! I don’t know about you but I’m super inspired to change up my 1950s wardrobe after seeing these snapshots (Liz leaves blog to rummage thru closet….Ha Ha).
Question time: Did you have a favourite look from above? Do you also enjoy looking at photos of how regular folks dressed? Share in the comments below.
I have said it before and I will say it again, vintage catalogues are seriously the BEST way to see what everyday people were buying. I personally adore them (and have featured them several times before on this blog) and thanks to the Library and Archives of Canada we ALL can enjoy what was to offer for Women in Spring & Summer of 1945.
Time to take a peak….
Coat-Suit Classics for the Teen-Age Girls (note: the word “Teenage” was only starting to be used around this time in the popular press).
Enchanting new blouses and super 1940s vintage hairstyles.
It’s a Jumper Season. I adore a cute jumper accessorised with a pretty broach and blouse (picture above).
Sportswear for the active gal.
Spring shirtwaist day dresses and a pretty dress for nighttime.
Cotton dresses to keep you cool.
Pick your colour for your next dress, coat etc. So much colour and patterns!
Spring Hats to brighten up your day. These would of been perfect for a Easter Parade. Don’t you agree?
Snoods with Daisy’s, beautiful scarfs for your hair and the most stylish of 1940s Turbans makes for some super fashion inspiration. Plus look at those adorable detachable collars?!
New Pyjama Fashions for Spring (Plus Housecoats & Wrap-Arounds)! There are those colourful patterns again.
Save those dresses while cooking and cleaning with pretty stylish aprons.
On Friday I’m off to the Florida Keys (Florida’s southernmost point and boasts some of the state’s most beautiful beaches) to meetup with some friends to spend a week hanging out, snorkelling and diving. This is my first time to the Keys and I’m excited to see what this tropical part of Florida has to offer.