Monday, April 28, 2014

Crazy Catalog Stuff - Part 4: Say Yes to the Dress!

Gentle Readers,

I must address you personally about an issue so abhorrent, so outrageous, that I can hardly bring myself to even discuss the subject.

I refer to the cable television show "Say Yes to the Dress". (1)  Here, corrupting our youth with visions of wedding dresses STARTING at $6K (2) and heading northwards above, "**gasp**" $20K!!  I  implore you (and as a father of several young ladies ranging in age from the late-teens to the mid-20s) to DEMAND a stop to this insanity (or what I jokingly refer to as "wedding porn") (3).

As an alternative I have suggested to my young, female offspring "Well, heck, why don't you just get a wedding dress from the Sears Catalog like they did back in the 70s?  After all they only cost, oh say, 50 dollars!" (disgusted eye-rolls quickly follow that suggestion).

Okay, okay, this dress costs $75 instead of $50.  For my precious pumpkin, I'll splurge for the extra $25.00 (after all it's JCP instead of Sears so you'd expect to pay a little more!)  See!  Here Kathy looks absolutely resplendent in this dress!!  I mean, it meets all the requirements - it's white, it's got lots of frilly, lacy stuff, so there !! Why pay thousands, when you can pay dozens and still look great?!?

So Penney's is a little too "high falutin", well there's always Aldens for the budget conscious.  Still, it's white and the gal looks great, So What's the Big Deal?? (4)  Even mom and dad could get their wedding day outfits from Aldens!  "Happy the Bride" indeed.  Of course, it looks to me like mom and dad are the ones really happy with all the savings!  As a bonus: what kind of pose is the bride doing?  Some kind of limbo-low move?

Those crazy catalogs even displayed a wide choice of bridesmaid dresses!  Just look at these lovelies!!  Ahhh, memories of all the weddings of my friends come to mind - and NO, they didn't spend $20K for a dress!! (of course some of those weddings right after High School were, ah hem, a bit hastily put together, ah hem.)

More bridesmaid dresses, this time from Aldens.  You've got to love the old-time Southern Belle look with the pink parasol.

Kathy as a bridesmaid with a parasol, so lovely.  Hey!! Wait one cotton-pickin'-minute!! Isn't that dude the same guy that was with Kathy in the first pic???  You dad-bern-two-timin'-Sumofabee!! Get away from my daughter or you're gunnin' git a blast of rock salt in yer behind!!!!

So I implore you, dear readers, to join me in this quest to end wedding dress insanity!  After all, there are practical considerations also.  Think of what a young couple could do with all that extra money (or think of the new pickup truck dear ole dad could buy!)


(1) For those of you that don't follow such things.  "Say Yes to the Dress" is one of these quasi-reality shows that follows all the ups and downs of brides-to-be picking out their wedding dress at a high end dress store.  It's on TLC. Often is the time when I come home from work to find all the women of my household huddled around the TV watching this with rapt attention - the horror, the horror......

(2) On the show, a common theme is that the bride-to-be finds the perfect dress, but, alas, it's WAY over the preset family budget.  You can just see the disappointment on her face as her family attempts to convince her to settle for the dress of a mere $6K when her heart is set on the $15K version.  Naturally, after some tear-filled-drama, mom twists dad's arm and little princess gets her wish.  I think I'm feeling sick just thinking about it.

(4) I have even joked about putting parental controls on that station to have it blocked.

(3) So What's the Big Deal was a common theme in the hey day of Aldens catalogs, so I had to work that in.

Monday, April 21, 2014

K Club Special (Part 9) - Karen Bruun (Part 2)

Well, it's time again for another in our "K Club" special posts.  And for the second time, we're going to focus on Karen Bruun.

Karen had the almost perfect look for modeling in the late 60s and early 70s.  The huge smile, the classic femininity, the almost-too-easy sexual appeal, that just made you felt like she was the most perfect gal you could imagine.

Karen was Miss Teenage New York City in 1968 where one of the judges was Cybil Shepard.  Cybil spotted her and Karen became a model with the Ford Agency.  She was also Miss Staten Island in 1969.

Karen was everywhere in this era.  For example, in ads like these. (re-blogged from MiniMadMods60s).

And here with Colleen. (re-blogged from MiniMadMods60s).

Of course, we know her most form all the groovy-istic catalogs of the 70s!

Karen had that quintessential look.  She could simply "own" the camera effortlessly.  Take a look at those eyes again - hard to find that!

Once again, those eyes!  Dang!!

Karen could also pull of the classy look like here in Spiegel..

Or she could pull of the cute girl-next-door-look in ponytails and a bathing suit.  Wait a minute!  Is that an arrow...oh, right, we did that that before in a previous post.  It's an ANCHOR, yes I'm sure now that it's an ANCHOR, oh of course, how silly of me to think otherwise.

"What's Next?"  Well how about Kathy and Karen in cutesy tails, together!!  It seemed that Kathy and Karen almost always appeared together .  They were like a tag-team of perfect 70s catalog modeling or something.  Wow, they (and all the other models of that era) were so great.  It's so much fun to look back on them still!!

Like on the first post on Karen, I have to add that she is no longer with us, and will be missed by all her friends, colleagues, and all of us who grew up during that era admiring her work......

Monday, April 14, 2014

Fashion as Couples Therapy (Part 5) What the Heck Let's Have Fun!

Sometimes I have a tendency to over think what I'm going to post.  So this week, after deep soul-searching and contemplation of the historical influence of Platonic philosophy on modern life, I threw up my hands and said "What-the-heck.  Let's have some fun!"   And what is more fun than His 'n Her coordinates from the 70s!! (okay, the 70s swimsuits are pretty freaky awesome too, but it's not quite the season for that yet).

So where are all the "cool" kids going to get their groovy coordinates?  Well they they boogie on down to "The Inn Shop" at Penney's naturally!  Platform shoes, wide collars, uni-color pants and shirts, and extra wide belts with just a hint of bell-bottoms - sooooo 70s!

We're still in "The Inn Shop".  Now with wheels and totally awesomely matched 70s sweaters.  Perfect for a Spring day of cycling with your lady!!

Yeah baby!, the "Inn Shop" is the most groovin', happen' spot in the JCP catalog!!  Forget those nerds with the bicycles!  Now we've got sports cars to impress the gals!

Leaving the Inn Shop, now we must be with the "out" crowd.  And stepping out in style they are.  You may have noticed that the fashions 70s had this thing about uniformity.  Perhaps it was a reaction against the hyper-individuality of the 60s or maybe because it was just so much groovy fun!

So where are the Kathy pics you ask?

Great shot of Kathy, but compared to the previous pics, these His 'n Her coordinates seem a little less flamboyant.

Well, we can change that!  High rise, blindingly yellow pants with disco-crazy shirts - that'll get us back on track.  Wait.  The belts are not matching!! The horror, the horror!!  (1)

This is an old scan that I decided to throw in at the last minute.  What the heck is going on here?  Obviously, the young lady is sweet on the dude on the right, but dufus on the left still thinks he's got a chance in the game.  Oh well.  Sorry, but I don't see it happening man, time to "let it go" and move on.....

Let's end on a pic with Kathy.  I don't know about those matching shirts, but the brown suede pants with the platform shoes are perfect for an afternoon out at the park!


(1) For all you younger viewers, the little pics running down the side are supposed to be like a roll of film.      That was when you had to put actual film in a camera, take the pictures, and then have them developed.  The entire process would take several days.  That was long before the age of instant selfie gratification.  I wonder what Plato would say about that?

Monday, April 7, 2014

Random Weirdness: 70s Photoshop - Magic or Madness? (Part 2)

Wow, it's been over a year since our first post on 70s photoshop technological wizardry.  And as the Wolf Brand Chili ad used to say "Well, pardner, that's too long..." 

For those of you that missed the first post on 70s Photoshop - Magic or Madness, click here:

As you can plainly tell, Kathy, Karen and the two brunettes are perfectly attired for a day at the beach riding around in a jeep (which appears to be stuck).  What?, you mean to tell me that the sundresses they're wearing are NOT appropriate?  Oh, dear, JCPenney reached for photoshop magic but I'm afraid they produced madness instead!!

You may be thinking "Why is there a jeep?"  Good question.  Don't worry, the jeep is part of a larger theme for this photo shoot.  We'll get to that later........

I admit that I had to study this pic a long time to figure it out.  It was like "What the.....???"  Finally, I realized that  the background must be a view from inside a plane's cockpit.  What this has to do with the models and their spring fashions completely escapes me.  Not only is this madness, it is pure insanity!!

Bonus points for those of you who know the identity of the model to Shelly Hack's right (in the cute yellow hat).  I won't spoil it for the others...

Yep, that's "her" again next to Shelley.  This is a little better pic than the one above, so you may have an idea by now.  Although this is the other half of the pic above, it's still pure madness!!!!!!

"All Aboard!!"  Karen, Kathy, and the brunette look way too cute to board that boat (which kind of looks like a shrimp boat?!?) in the background.  Yeah, "Knits Go everywhere" except for a shrimp boat.  Once again, this is sheer madness!!

We've had three pic in a row of  70s photoshop madness.  Where, oh where, is the magic??..........

"I'm leavin' on a jet plane, don't know when I'll be back again...."   I'm not sure if these models are supposed to be on the tarmac in front of this plane or what?  Obviously you couldn't do that today.  Of course, air travel was so very different back then.  Is this finally photoshop magic?  Well, it's not quite the madness of the previous pics, but, let's face it, no real magic here.  It's just kind of lame really (despite the gorgeous smiles of these gals).

As you have probably picked up, the overall "theme" of this photoshop series is "travel" .  I guess it is supposed to show how these happin' JCP fashions are perfect for the young, "jet set" crowd or something.

Still, it's kind of hard to explain the next two pics....

Now we've gone from a shrimp boat to a freighter or some kind of tanker?  I'm sorry, but Karen is not suitably dressed for that.  More madness!!

I just had to include the other half of the above pic for one simple reason: Kathy in a long dress in front of the ocean.  Huh???  Maybe the technicians just didn't have anywhere else for this.

As you may recall, we finished the last post on 70s photoshop with Kathy in a long dress with a Oktoberfest look.  Hey, that reminds me.  It's Saturday afternoon, so what the heck.  I think I'll "Roll out the Barrel" again!