FC: Welcome | to | the | 50's
1: Introduction | Hey all you hipsters and cool cats. The 1950s is something that we all know something about -- whether we are aware of it or not. It wasn't till I sat down to do this project that I realized how much I modern culture holds its roots in the 50s. Even some of the modern slang has the crew cut teens of the 50s to thank for the...interesting phrases that came out of their years. So bunching together all the illuminations I have gathered through my research, I only hope that I'm in orbit as you read through this book. Over and out. -Toria
4: The coolest cats in town
5: After the end of World War II, fashion once again began to take a definite shape. It started with the designer Christian Dior, who took a bold leap at 50s fashion when he came out with the 'New Look' (as it was dubbed by the Life magazine in 1947). This look is shown in the picture on the far left. It consisted of a fitted jacket on top, and a mid-calf length skirt. Dior's New Look was a large contributor to the popular trend of the age. But by the mid-fifties, the style had grown into bigger skirts, that often had layers of nylon petticoats underneath it to create the bell-shaped look that was so popular.
7: Compared to the fabulous designs of the women's wear of the day, men's fashions were fairly plain. The sought after husband of the times was the working man. Following this trend, there was little originality in menswear. Most of the older gentleman dressed in gray suits, made primarily of wool or cotton. The younger crowd dressed more loosely, in flannel shirts, cardigans and loose fitting pants. Influenced by James Dean in the mid-fifties, if boys were going for a more rebellious look, the style changed to a t-shirt and jeans. In the later fifties, the jackets also were designed to fit more loosely around the shoulders, while the pant legs got tighter.
8: Ann Miller April 12, 1923 – January 22, 2004 | Elizabeth Taylor February 27, 1932 – March 23, 2011 | Elvis Presley January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977 | Johnny Cash February 26, 1932 – September 12, 2003
9: On the page opposite, there are several pictures that might give you a good idea on what popular hair looked like in the 50s. For the younger generation of girls, the ponytail rose in great popularity. But for the more sophisticated looking woman, a short, curly hairstyle was the trend. While for men, young and old, the classic 'greaser' look was just making it's way to classic. Coined by celebrities such as Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley (shown opposite)
11: What would we be without the beloved toys of the era? Some of them have been long forgotten, only to be remembered in the minds of the adults who played with them. But others have carried on throughout the years, growing and evolving with the times. And some remain in their classic state, still as dear to our hearts as they were when they first came into being.
13: To say that the hula hoop was invented in the 50s is incorrect, as people around the world have been playing with their own 'hula hoops' for over four thousand years. But it was in 1957 that a Australian retail company began making wooden rings. The idea attracted the attention of a fledgling toy company based out of California, USA. Two of the company's men spent months promoting their new toy, and in 1958, the company sold over fifteen million hula hoops that year. It'd be hard to find someone who hasn't heard of hula hoops, for even today, over fifty years later, they remain a popular toy for young and old alike.
14: Another of the classical toys is the slinky. Shown across the page, the slinky was an immediate hit. The toy was invented by naval engineer Richard James in the early forties. And when it debuted it 1945, the department store it had been displayed at sold it's entire stock in under two hours. Since then, variations have been put on the toy. Including Slinky Dog (shown below) as invented by Helen Malsed in 1952. Its been around for such a long time...and still manages to entertain me.
15: *"What walks down stairs, alone or in pairs, and makes a slinkity sound? A spring, a spring, a marvelous thing! Everyone knows it's Slinky. It's Slinky, it's Slinky. For fun it's a wonderful toy. It's Slinky, it's Slinky. It's fun for a girl or a boy. It's fun for a girl or boy!" | *The original advertising jingle for the slinky
16: It was in the tail end of the 50s that one of the greatest, and most memorable toys of all time came into being. The idea for Barbie was originally thought up by Ruth Handler, who noticed that when her daughter played dolls, she often gave her dolls adult rolls. Even though the dolls designed at the time were mostly constructed as infants. Handler purposed the idea to her husband, who was one of the co-founders of the toy company Mattel, but neither he, nor any of the other men at Mattel thought it was a good idea. But three years after Handler had her idea, Barbie debuted on March 9th, 1959 and became and instant success. Girls everywhere now replaced their paper dolls for the new plastic Barbie dolls. The original doll (shown right) came in a black and white bathing suit, and was manufactured with both brunette and blond hair colors. Within the first year of her debut, there were twenty-two other outfits that you could purchase to dress the doll with. Some casual, and others glamorous that came with accessories like hats, glasses and purses. Since 1959, the Barbie industry has expanded, and kept strong the whole while. Despite the controversies over the dolls. But there are still girls today who ask for the new Barbie doll for Christmas.
18: In | Like | Flynn
19: "I can see where movie acting is going to be my toughest adventure. That's why it appeals to me."
20: Errol Flynn is a name that many people know. He is a legend in Hollywood, and among the slightly older generation. But he is more remembered for the last years of his life, in which he was a alcoholic and drug addict. But it is just to say that the man who died of a heart attack in Vancouver, 1959, is not the same man who so many people idolized in his younger days. However, in his younger days, he was every bit the swashbuckling hero on screen as he was off.
22: In 1909, Flynn was born in Tasmania to a pair of respectable parents. But in his childhood Flynn rebelled against authority, and was expelled from several school over the course of his school years. Later, in his twenties he sought adventure and sailed up the east coast of Australia to New Guinea with a group of friends. There, he searched for gold, smuggled diamonds and escaped headhunters on several occasions. "This period of his life formed who he was." quoted from his daughter, Rory Flynn. ""By the time he got to Hollywood, he was that 'Tasmanian Devil,' and he brought that to his films."
23: Flynn as Captain Blood
25: Flynn appeared in a short film by an Australian director, but it was in England in 1933 that a stage appearance led him to his contact with Warner Brothers. Shortly after that, he came to America. With his appearance as 'Captain Blood' in the same titled movie, Flynn became and overnight star. Flynn was a 'personality actor', where he appeared as the same kind of swashbuckling hero in almost all of his movies. But that was part of who he was. It wasn't all pretend that he was the hero with the devil-may-care attitude, who swooned the ladies with a single wink. It was all natural to him.
26: Flynn was the classic hero. It is only right that he should be remembered how he was in his most glorious days, as opposed to the opposite man that he became in his final years. In many ways, he defined the Hollywood man. His influence has been seen throughout the years in the way that the heroic characters fight the bad guy, and win the girl. Rest in peace.
28: End Notes: | Why I chose my images? I used a lot of images in this project, so I won't go back and say why I chose each one. But I chose each picture with the idea that said image would help embellish the idea and emotions that I was trying to create. | Things I learned: I enjoyed doing this project immensely! Mostly because all of the interesting things that I learned. It was nice to get a couple different views on Errol Flynn, from just being a downright bad guy, to be a decent one who made the wrong choices. I found some of the issues that the Barbie company had really funny! Did you know Barbie is illegal in some countries for being a bad role model? I also took to noticing how much the 50's fashion has influenced modern times. I saw a few things that I would wear myself, without even a second thought! Even when I was researching hula hoops, I read that in the 1800's a similar thing was created, and both children and adults participated in 'hooping'. Doctor's records show that they treated a large number of adults with back problems and heart issues due to this 'hooping'! Altogether, I found this project to be extremely insightful. I feel like I've learned a lot in doing it.
29: References used: [ http://www.fashion-era.com/1950s_glamour.htm ]http://www.fashion-era.com/1950s_glamour.htm [ http://boomers-fifties-pinups.com/1950s_mens_clothing.html ]http://boomers-fifties-pinups.com/1950s_mens_clothing.html [ http://www.newberry.k12.sc.us/mchs/50sSlang.htm ]http://www.newberry.k12.sc.us/mchs/50sSlang.htm [ http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/hulahoop.htm ]http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/hulahoop.htm [ http://www.squidoo.com/10-most-popular-toys-of-the-1950s ]http://www.squidoo.com/10-most-popular-toys-of-the-1950s [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slinky#Slinky_Dog ]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slinky#Slinky_Dog [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbie ]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbie [ http://www.fashion-doll-guide.com/Vintage-Barbie-1959-1960.html ]http://www.fashion-doll-guide.com/Vintage-Barbie-1959-1960.html [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Errol_Flynn ]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Errol_Flynn [ http://www.inlikeflynn.com/flynn.html ]http://www.inlikeflynn.com/flynn.html [ http://movies.nytimes.com/person/90030/Errol-Flynn ]http://movies.nytimes.com/person/90030/Errol-Flynn [ http://themave.com/Flynn/ ]http://themave.com/Flynn/