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Josephine the Plumber

Oct 09, 2012 |  Retro Staff No Comments

By the mid-1960s an American actress became a household name, despite the fact that it wasn’t her own. Josephine the Plumber was a popular character for Comet cleanser, appearing in scores of television commercials and print ads. Jane Withers started her acting career at age three, and was a popular child film star of the

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Filed under: Retro Memories Tagged with: advertising, Retro Characters

The Edsel Show

Sep 27, 2012 |  Retro Staff No Comments

By the mid- to late-1950s television was dominating the American living room. Sponsorship was a networks’ key form of programming support, and there were plenty of big companies willing to spend the money to get their names out there. Texaco, Colgate, Kraft, and many other corporations, sponsored entire programs that came with naming rights. Texaco

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1950s Colors: Cannon Towels & Toilet Paper

Sep 26, 2012 |  Retro Staff No Comments

In the 1950s bathroom, color was everything. Often the powder room used one primary color from the pastel palette, and one or two accent colors. It didn’t stop with the walls, fixtures and decor items, either. Manufacturers of all kinds of products recognized the ’50s color palette and used it to offer a plethora of

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French Fashion Perfume Ads

Sep 09, 2012 |  Retro Staff 1  Comment

Flip through the pages of any modern women’s magazine and you’ll find pages of sensual images promoting both classic and new perfumes and colognes. Perfumery has been a popular and profitable trade for several centuries. Designer scents have been, for many years, in high demand. In the late 1300s, the Hungarians produced a perfume that

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The Toastmaster Super De Luxe Toaster with Power Action (1953)

Aug 28, 2012 |  Retro Staff 1  Comment

Comparing costs from the 1950s with the 2010s based on inflation alone isn’t exactly perfect. Just like today, new technologies were viewed as luxury items and introductory prices reflected this. The automatic pop-up toaster was first introduced in 1926, but manual toasters maintained popularity well into the ’50s, mostly due to costs. Take a look

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The refrigerator with a thousand faces.

Aug 22, 2012 |  Retro Staff 2 Comments

This 1960s-era ad for a Whirlpool refrigerator offers up something that never really caught on – using fabrics or wood to decorate the doors. Take a look at this 1967 magazine ad, target toward housewives: Like many ’60s ads, this one is text heavy and targets women in the hope they can influence a major

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Silly TV: Classic Silly Putty Commercials

Jul 31, 2012 |  Retro Staff 1  Comment

When marketing consultant Peter Hodgson risked $147 of borrowed money to introduce a bouncing putty to the world, his target audience was adults. As that market dwindled, it was kids lifting newsprint that made him shift gears. The once-failed product that was created in hopes to help the war effort turned into a multi-million dollar

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“The Tape With the Plaid…”

Jul 19, 2012 |  Retro Staff No Comments

It’s usually the “simple” inventions that make significant impacts on our daily lives, and Scotch Tape is no different. Quite often, these simple items have a detailed, interesting history. The Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Co. (3M) was founded in 1902 by five businessmen seeking to mine a mineral deposit for grinding-wheel abrasives. With its first

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