In Sears Catalog Goodness I pull one page from a vintage Sears catalog to highlight neat, interesting, or just plain funny images and products sold by one of America’s greatest retailers once upon a time. You knew I couldn't go the whole Halloween season without sharing some vintage costumes from Sears, right? Well I'm not about to disappoint you on that front, so here is a page from the Fall 1958 catalog featuring the biggest heroes and stars of the day -- Zorro, Superman, Lassie, Woody Woodpecker, Casper the Friendly Ghost, Bugs Bunny, and "Pop-Eye the Sailor Man." The name characters on this page are great, of course, but my eye is drawn toward the costume that probably dates this assortment more than any other -- Satellite Joe, the "man of tomorrow." If that doesn't screa
The Space Age motif on this 1956 print ad for Puffin Biscuits -- "So light they almost fly!" -- is subtle but still hard to miss. And it's worth a look: I can't tell what I like more about the design of this ad, the little boy in the vintage 1950s space helmet for the little biscuit with wings at the bottom.
This week I take a break from my New Jersey-centric photos to feature a pair of really cool images from Life magazine. They were taken in Washington, D.C. by noted Life photog Yale Joel in 1954, although I've been unable to determine when or if they actually ran in the magazine. From what I can gather, some lucky boy won a contest involving a rocket ship. I'm not sure what he did to win it -- dress up and send in a picture or write an essay perhaps. But the rocket rolled into town on the back of a trailer, and quite a crowd turned out to see it. I'm guessing this is the kid who won the contest, all decked out in his space jumpsuit and homemade helmet. Looks like a Timmy or a Johnny. The photo description page says this about this spectacular shot, which could only have com...
I hope you enjoyed the first set of New Year's cards from the USSR of the 1950s, because we're moving on to the '60s. And while most of the imagery found in the '50s was brought over into the next decade, you can definitely see some more of the Space Age creeping in as well. As with the first set, all card scans courtesy Flickr user katya. Enjoy, and С Новым годом! (Happy New Year!) 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
Via the Smithsonian -- This toy “Cape Canaveral Satellite Monitor” bus is a tin toy produced in Japan for export to an American market. In post-WWII Japan, producing space-themed “tin toys” originated as a way to tap into an international market for “penny toys” or cheap playthings. By the late 1950s, however, this home-crafted industry had become a successful international business manufacturing creatively-designed, complex toys with moving parts and/lights that competed successfully with Western toymakers. This toy’s maker, Yonezawa Toys, Co., Ltd., was one of the biggest manufacturers in Japan of tin toys, many of which carried space themes. The design of this toy, which features lithography created to appeal to an American market, tapped into the American fascination with the new