Thursday, April 25, 2013

K Club Special Part 1: Kay Campbell

Here is my first post where I concentrate on one of the other "K Club" members besides Kathy (1).  After a long internal staff debate of about, say, 5 minutes (2), I decided to highlight Kay first (no offense to the other K Clubbers).  She was absolutely EVERYWHERE back in the 60s and 70s as a model, and she had a smile that could absolutely light up a room!

See what I mean! She also had those eyes that just seemed to draw you to her.  Wow! Her look was perfect for that era.  No  wonder she appeared in just about every kind of print modeling.  Also, her career was a looonnnggg one.  Below are a couple of photos of Kay from 1963!

And here is a photo of her from 1977:

Now that is quite a time span for a model to stay on top of her game (and she actually modeled for a few years after that)!

I admit that, for the longest time, I had no idea what her real name was.  Even after I found out Kathy's name, Kay's real name remained a mystery to me.  Also, I have been unable, to date, to locate much info on her such as where she is from, and what the heck happened to her after she stopped modeling.  If anyone out there has any further info, I'm sure the visitors to this site would appreciate it.

Here's a pic of her in mid-career circa 1971.  I love the pose on the little pic of Kay in the lower left.  Is she about to fall down or something?  Doesn't look very comfortable to me, and why have her do that?  Is that going to make people want to buy these pants?

One problem that I've had in my role as Blogger Historian of the Big Book catalogs of this era is that it's hard to do an internet search on her.  There are too many other people named Kay Campbell out there (3) - including an actress on All My Children.  So, for now, she is a bit of an enigma.

But, when she was an active model, boy! did she model!  I have a ton of pics of her, so expect follow up posts in the future.

Just like the other K Club members and their friends, Kay could really pull off the cute look with perfection. Who else would you want to model this outfit with the potted flowers?

Okay, okay, Let's have one pic that includes Kathy just to get you by to next week...

In the lower right corner we have three of the K Clubbers in small print: Kay, Colleen, and Kathy.  The Big Book catalogs often would have these tiny pics included.  I guess it was to show a different angle or combo or something.

One final pic.  I know some of these have been re-posts from other sites, so for all you Kay Campbell fans, here is an original which displays her versatility.

If you can't make up you're mind on what length to wear, Penneys says you can have them all! And each in the same crazy purple print.  Kay looks great in all of them!


(1) "K Club" is what I call the four catalog models: Kathy Loghry, Karen Bruun, Kay Campbell, and Colleen Corby. Their names all begin a hard k sound, and they often appear together in the big book catalogs.  K Club sounded better than "Gang of Four".

(2) Yea it was one of those corporate staff meetings where nobody could agree.  The R&D department said they needed to do more research on Kay.  Marketing wanted to another swimsuit post (like they always do, they only think about the short term, you know).  IT wanted to spend the week doing software upgrades (like normal).  As CEO of this corporate empire I had to get tough and lower the bloom "Look guys, we are in a very competitive marketplace.  We've got to pull this together.  I don't care what it takes!"  Then Accounting mumbled something about inappropriate charges on the company jet.  "Meeting adjourned" I quickly added.

(3) You get some really interesting looking police mugshots on these kind of Internet searches (not our Kay Campbell, other people named Kay Campbell)!  People, don't drink and drive, please!  BUI is okay, DUI is not!


  1. Kay was everywhere in the 1970's! I have some old sewing magazines with her in them too. Wonder why Colleen always looks so solemn? Occasionally whe will have a smile, but usually it's just that exotic, come hither look!

    1. Yea, I have some pics of Kay in various other publications. I even think that some are sewing leaflets. She was everywhere back then! As for Colleen, I guess she was going for the high fashion look. But she smiled in some also. Expect a post in the future with a few smiling pics of her!

  2. I think it's safe to say that Kay Campbell was absolutely the most prolific catalog model of her time. And that was the highest paying job for a model. She must have made a ton of money. I didn't know she went back as far as 1963!

    1. Yea, she was everywhere. I love the Diet Rite ad - brings back some memories. I've always wondered how the stores like Sears, Penneys, etc. chose the models. It would be interesting if anyone has some info or stories on that. The K Clubbers and their cohorts definitely had a good thing going!

    2. Would like being at one of your corporate meeting. Such big decisions! you are doing a great job.

    3. Thanks! Yea, you know people "complain" about how big time CEO's make so much. But let me tell you - we earn every dern penny!!! Now if I can only keep those twerps from Accounting from snooping around so much about those corporate jet charges!

  3. Either JC Penny or Sears kept track of how well clothing sold and which model was wearing the garment. Whatever Kathy wore must have sold really really well.....we all wanted to look like her!

    1. Wow, I had no idea, but I guess that makes sense. Maybe that explains why you see certain models in certain styles of clothes over and over!