Trying to put my thoughts & ideas down somewhere and give another outlet to my creativity. It's all connected, so I can't say it's a blog about just this or just that. Dolls. Fashion. Art. A little bit on travel, whatever... let's take it wherever it goes...


Meyer's Modeblatt 1946 - No. 5, 2nd February

So, here I am again finally with a "new" issue! No more pushing furniture around or trawling Ikea on a Saturday afternoon (I know, I must've been a little crazy...)!
The first February issue has a pretty, sporty day dress on it's cover. Again though, this was nothing a reader could sew by herself, the dress was by Nabholz. I also like the model, and the way she wears her hair in a natural-looking style.

Since it was still was mostly winter, the magazine recommended again a ski tour, this time from Saanenmöser to Zweisimmen. No lifts there!

The fashion!

I have to put this up front, because I liked this so much! None of the dresses was on one of the sewing pattern pages, but this issue included and order form for one free pattern. There was a double page of children's clothing, and this one, with "early spring" dresses - that's rather optimistic, considering they also recommended a ski tour in the same issue ;-). Anyway, there are five pretty, very wearable day dresses. Note the one on the left, it features kimono-sleeves - very fashionable indeed!
What made me like this page so much was the piece on the left though. It's a column on fashion and the meaning (personal) style. The opening paragraph in short says, you can be dressed not very fashionably but have loads of style, as much as you can be dressed to the lastest fashion, and not have an ounce of style. "Fashion can be bought - no matter if it's in a department store, made to measure or even from a couturier - but style is where the purse can do nothing. Style is something one must have in oneself - and which one must cultivate." Oh, how very, very true this is! Further on, it tells the reader that "now that fashion is almost mass-produced", a woman must recognise her style and be true to it, in order not to be overlooked. And have the guts to say "no, I won't buy it, it's not for me" to something even if they're told that it's the latest style. Though of course fashion is mostly mass-produced today, this piece is as true today as it was when it was written - everybody should pin this to their wardrobe door!

The big, wide world
Next - a "miniature child" - a story about a baby born 12 months prematurely in England. I guess at the time it was pretty miraculous that such a baby would survive, but it seems it did. They did have an incubator - which looks quite crude for us today. Apparently it hadn't been used for years and was supposed to be sold!

Keeping up with news from across the channel, there was also small piece the British prime minister's wife, Mrs. Atlee. Nothing about politics though - no, not in this mag! It's more about here story, and her children - and it says that she didn't "meddle" in her husband's politics.

Next up - a small article about the island of Ischia. This was before the tourism boom of the 1950s/60s set in!

And finally... the mixed page! A procession commemorating one of our civil wars (18th century), a 13-year-old chess prodigy, the young king of Siam (Thailand)...

For your dose of culture
No Hollywood movie, but a whole page about a rising star at the Schauspielhaus, Zurich's most famous theater. I admit, I wouldn't have known the name Agnes Fink before, but she did appear in some movies and later on TV too. IMDb has the details.

Do it yourself
 Cushions and curtains to embroider - and what to make of different remains of woolen fabrics.


 Two products we still know well today! Aspirin of course needs no introduction, and Alcacyl is also still around - the fizzy tablets in the organge package! What I did not realize until now though is that Alcacyl is based on the same active substance as Aspirin!


And here's more companies that are still around in one way or another! Samen Mauser still produce plant seed, and the logo itself has barely changed! Zwicky... well, they used produce their sewing threads not far from where I live, in Wallisellen, but that's history - they are now part of the Gütermann company, and production has been moved abroad.

 This "call to all housewives" is an ad too, though cleverly concealed as an article, or more modernly put, it's an advertorial. And who by? Möbel Pfister! The "call" to housewives is to tell them that they should make their life more beautiful by having a beatiful home - meaning new furniture! It goes on to say that to live with nice furniture is not a luxury. What makes me really laugh though, is the small note at the end that their shops exhibiting the furniture get very busy on Saturday afternoons, so they recommend people to come in on a weekday or on Saturday mornings. Now what was that about Saturday afternoons at Ikea? Some things never change indeed *lol*!

Breast enhancement ad
Yep, it's Rondoform again! Slightly different wording. This time they claimed that a woman's breasts would bring out her "womanly beauty" - and that the treatment with Rondoform was cheap. Ouch!

Slimming product ad
Orbal and Amaigritol were both back again with the same ad. Duh.


Why I've been absent for a bit...

I know, I'm way behind on blogging my vintage magazines. No worries - I will be back with the next issue next weekend! It's been a busy few weeks! It started with my deciding to get a new PC - finally. And then also wanting to replace my old desk, which had a laptop-unfriendly format. Weeeell... I got a few things more than just a new PC and a new desk! And after finally managing to get a really big frame for my big new poster, the room is finished, and the new PC is running, never mind the new TV mediabox that my TV company finally foisted on me, after I never tried to get my by-now obsolete model exchanged for a newer one. Ok, it was free and has HD, but it's also a lot less user-friendly and the old one.

So after weekends of shopping at Ikea, getting rid of old stuff, putting things together and moving furniture around like in a giant game of Sokoban, the place actually like I had always imagined I should. Now I could kick myself that I took so long to get it together, as I like it so much!

 New desk & chair, new chairs, new curtain, new poster... and so on! Sorry for the dark photos, it gets dark here so early now...

Just right for watching TV!

My little kitsch corner!

Vintage and retro touches galore...
This is an original, they used to hang these out in cinema foyers. Classic... Bond schmooozing Miss Moneypenny! I always thought the original Dr. No poster was fantastic - so colorful! This is a modern copy though.

My grandpa's ice cube holder - now holds paper clips etc.

 Vintage 50s kitsch!

 Print of a Byron Birdsall painting of Creek Street in Ketchikan, from a charity shop. Hand numbered and signed by the artist.

These two are new, but fabulously vintage looking! Lots of good storage space!

And here.... is the pièce de résistance! Now, how fabulous is this?
 And... it actually works! Radio, alarm clock and light. The light is a rarity though. The seller added three more bulbs to fit into it - and that I think will be it, that kind of bulb is certainly not available here anymore!


More... next week!

Just a short one today. Since I have a new computer, a lot of new furniture in my living room and a lot of work... there was no time for posting the next magazine last weekend. More then on the next one, and maybe some of my newest vintage finds to decorate this room have arrived by then too! In the mean time, two vintage mail order catalogs have arrived which I hope to be sharing soon too - lots of interesting things in there!


Meyer's Modeblatt 1946 - No. 4, 26th January

 Yes, this is number 4! Number three is the only issue that is missing. But as consolation, number 4 has some fabulous fashion! On the cover: a sporty windowpane-check coat by Carven, in "grey and marron" according to the caption. Love it, and the big belt buckle!

Keep it patriotic?
I'm not quite sure what to make of this article. The (male) journalist makes an experiment - how easy is it to just chat up young Swiss ladies in the street? The journalist (who looks quite young and a bit baby-faced) doesn't only try it himself, but has a few American soldiers and seamen try their luck with the same ladies too! The result? The ladies react friendly enough and say they don't mind as long as they're being treated respectfully, when the journalist tells them of the experiment. One of the GIs is an African-American (politically incorrectly, but at the time probably pretty normally called "Neger" in German - that's the times for you), and funnily enough, the lady has time for him, but not for the journalist! Why? She works in a hotel, and usually doesn't let unknown men chat her up at all, but the GI is obviously a tourist, and these she will talk to of course!

The big, wide world
The "Diamond Horseshoe" is the Metropolitan Opera in New York - but the old one, not the building that we know today - that one is from the 60s if I remember right. It certainly looks packed, and the nickname appropriate! The box decorated with the US flag is the president's box, and on the picture on the top left we have the First Lady and their daughter Margaret. Bottom left is the widow of Cornelius Vanderbilt, and on the right the opera singer Lily Pons. She had quite a career, as Wikipedia tells us: Googling pictures of her also turns up a load of glamour shots!

 Speaking of glamorous - this little blurb talks about "London's number one pin-up girl", 20-year-old actress Jill Evans. To be honest, she doesn't look quite as glamourous or sexy as I would imagine a pin-up. Finding out anything about her has been hard... I guess they were given a couple of nice shots to fill up the page by some pulicist or movie company who wanted to promote her a bit, but she doesn't seem to have had a big career. IMDb doesn't find her in much either, with the last film being from 1945. Looks like she retired from film after that.

The mixed news page is quite interesting this week! At the top, it talks about the collection for the Berghilfe charity. The organisation still exists, still helping farmers in mountain regions. I just didn't know it had been around for that long already! Here it talks about some of their projects, and gives the details where the money can be donated to.
Below: after six years, the bob sled-run in St. Moritz had been re-opened and a female US forces member (they don't say who she was or what her functions was) tried it out. 
Real-life lieutenant John Hoy, hero of the movie "The Last Chance" (check it out a IMDb - what an unusual Swiss film - sounds really interesting!) got married - to a Swiss girl from Lugano. The film is about an English and an American soldier escaping the Nazis in Italy and trying to make it to the Swiss border... The director was an Austrian who had emigrated to Switzerland, the film was produced by a Swiss company and distributed by MGM. No famous names in the cast list, and maybe John Hoy wasn't the only real-life soldier making a once-in-a-lifetime appearance in a film. I shouldn't wonder if he met the girl while filming this! I am fascinated now, and I actually want to see this!
Edouart Herriot, mayor of Lyon, was on a lecture tour in Switzerland.
French actress Michèle Morgan was also touring Switzerland, in aid of a French charity.
UN General Assembly in London (the first one...!) - it's first chairman, Belgian foreign minister Paul Henri Spaak holding a speech. 
And whilst the UN was holding it's first assembly, Mr. and Mrs. Churchill went on a holiday trip to the US, on board the "Queen Elizabeth". I can't help having a bit of a laugh here!
And last... the Swiss ski association was holding ski camps for kids again. 500 girls, raring to go skiing. Just imagine...!

The fashion!
First up, pretty aprons, decorated with colorful embroidery. Just imagine putting so much work into something as seemingly banal as an apron!

 But here comes the first taste of great fashion, Modeblatt style! The title says "Born in Paris...", so the implication is that these chic little day dresses are as good as anything designed in Paris. I love the illustration, and yes, the dresses are all very becoming. And just look at how short they are, they really just cover the knees and nothing more! Patterns could bought or ordered by mail in various sizes for these, but even better, each one was included in one size on the monthly pattern sheet! There were no actual sizes, it just went by bust-measurment, or hip measurement when the item concerned was just a skirt.
Here's a peek at the pattern sheet. Confusing? Indeed!

Household tips
Yes, can't do without those! No better way to plug a cookbook published by the same company ;-). Also included: another gas-saving menu list for a whole week (see issue no. 1).
 I find some of the things here quite fascinating. Yes, there are birchermuesli, rösti and other classic staples of Swiss food. But there are spaghetti with tomato sauce and cheese too! I wouldn't combine that with potato salad though... and there is Russian salad. I've always wondered about that. Basically, it's carrots, green beans, green peas and potatoes, all cut to small pieces, with a mayonnaise-based sauce. Can be bought ready-made in a tin. Looks like this was something normal already then, but of course a the time you'd make it yourself. I did have something more or less similar in a "Russian" restaurant on my trip to Uzbekistan - but I've never been able to find out where it comes from and if it's really Russian...

 Looks like a baking-agony aunt-column... but it's just an advertising vehicle for baking products! Marketing was certainly creative even then.
 Furniture by Möbel Pfister - a "starter set" so to speak for newly-weds. Reminds me of some of the furniture my grandparents had, who got married a few years earlier than this. The interesting thing? Their shop in downtown Zurich is still at the same location, Walcheplatz!

No new slimming-aid ad this time, but the usual Orbal ad is still there (see issue no.1), on this add-filled double page at the back:

 Breast enhancement ad
 Yes, of course, can't do without this! It may look like a normal article, but again, it's nothing but an ad - for the same product as already advertised in issue no. 1, Ronodoform pills! I haven't got the space here to translate it all, but this is... really, really crazy! They promise that with taking these pills, one's breasts would "awaken to new life and begin to grow, to fill up and become rounder" and that almost-flat ones (well, it's not put as nicely there!!!!) would grow to be "harmonically full hemispheres" and hanging ones would "return to their normal location and round normal shape". WHOA! If I didn't know that this was all hogwash (and that kind of thing only being able to be achieved with the help of silicone), I'd say this sounded rather alarming. Imagine this happening to you...!!!! I realise that there weren't as many advertising regulations around then as there are probably now, but still, this is the craziest ad I've ever read!