Monday, March 30, 2015

The Big Book Catalog Series (Part 5) 1972b!

This post probably should be titled "Catalogs that have issues."  Why?  Well the two Big Books that we'll examine this week are the Aldens and Spiegel 1972 Spring / Summer editions!

So what's the problem you ask?  Well check out the cover of the Aldens catalog.  Yep that's a water stain on the cover (if you missed it, you were probably distracted by the guy's leisure suit.)  Note to self  "Do not buy a catalog with obvious water damage on the cover."  And yes, that's Karen on the cover of Spiegel - with zebras on her skirt!

Let's start with Aldens.......
Nothing wrong here.  Kathy and Karen look perfect in this pic.  Except, that, well, although this pic is from the Aldens 1972 SS catalog, it's not from MY catalog.  It's courtesy of JJ's Playhouse (Thanks).  

JJ's pics are fine.  However, when I try to scan from this catalog it comes out like this.....

Yuck!  I tried everything: putting a big heavy book on top, putting a solid backing behind the page. Nothing worked.  After all, it's difficult enough to preserve old printed material when it hasn't been exposed to water.  (And it's not like these catalogs were made with the highest quality materials anyway.)   Still, Kay and Dottie are looking good in these yellow coordinates!

Kathy and Karen in a classic pose, and despite the crinkly wrinkly copy, they manage to make these bargain basement shorts look smashing! 

The worst thing about the water damage is that it mainly affected the front part of the catalog, which, naturally is where all of Kathy's pics are located.  So let's move on to some the sections less affected...

I don't publish a lot of pics from the men's section of the these old catalogs, but in this case I'll make an exception.  Yep, these are some "turned-on" youth.  However, no matter how turned on they are, I doubt they are going to attract many ladies in that attire! 

Two items of note here: the ecology shirt (heck, I forgot all about those!), and the mesh shirt (that's one 70s style I never wore, thank goodness!)

I've had enough of trying to get decent scans from that catalog.  Let's move on to the Spiegel 1972 SS edition.....

Ahhh, that's so much better.  These juniors (unlike the guys from Aldens) know how to dress to get noticed.  Check out Kathy's dress.  Yep, those are elephants?!?  What was it with elephants back then?  They seem to show up on clothing from time to time.  Did I miss something there?

Not sure what to say about this pic.  It's like Spiegel was trying to be hip and modern and still trying to stay upscale and classy - strange mix.

Well these guys are ready to hit the scene in style (which includes the classic denim jacket.)

Up front I mentioned that my copy of both these catalogs had issues.  The water damage with the Aldens catalog is obvious.  So what's wrong with the Speigel copy?........... 

Do not adjust your monitor.  That's the way the page actually looks.  Must have been a printing error or something.  Fortunately it only affected a few pages.  Despite all that, Shelley still looks great. 

Well, after all of these problems scanning these pages and dealing the printing errors, I need a break.  
Good thing I outfitted my den with all the "with-it" styles from Aldens: fake wood furniture - check, weirdly futuristic plastic furniture - check, red shag carpeting - check, well stocked bar - check, pretty blonde sharing a drink - uhh, well, we're working on that one.  


  1. We never had Aldens catalogs at home, for that I am thankful since mom ordered so much clothing! I'm sure we couldn't afford Spiegel. I like Kathy's elephant dress, I had a skirt very much like it except it was NOT from Aldens. My Aunt made it.. sigh.. The 70's....

    1. We didn't have Aldens or Spiegel either - strictly JCP and Sears. Still what is it about elephants? Apparently that trend never reached the hinterlands where I lived!

    2. We didn't have Aldens or Spiegel either, but my Grandma had Aldens catalogs up until the early 80s. There were local Gambles stores (the purchaser of Aldens) and Aldens catalogs were available in my area. The only place I heard of Spiegel is on game shows.

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