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October 25, 2021

The Jaguar E-Type: One of the Most Beautiful Cars of All Time

The Jaguar E-Type, or the Jaguar XK-E for the North American market, is a British sports car that was manufactured by Jaguar Cars Ltd between 1961 and 1975. Its combination of beauty, high performance, and competitive pricing established the model as an icon of the motoring world.

The E-Type’s claimed 150 mph (241 km/h) top speed, sub-7-second 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) acceleration, unitary construction, disc brakes, rack-and-pinion steering, and independent front and rear suspension distinguished the car and spurred industry-wide changes.

The E-Type was based on Jaguar’s D-Type racing car, which had won the 24 Hours of Le Mans for three consecutive years beginning in 1955, and employed what was, for the early 1960s, a novel racing design principle, with a front subframe carrying the engine, front suspension and front bodywork bolted directly to the body tub.

It is rumored that, on its release on 15 March 1961, Enzo Ferrari called it “the most beautiful car ever made”, but this statement is not fully confirmed. In 2004, Sports Car International magazine placed the E-Type at number one on their list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960s. In March 2008, the Jaguar E-Type ranked first in The Daily Telegraph online list of the world’s “100 most beautiful cars” of all time.

Here is a set of beautiful photos of the Jaguar E-Type.










Florida-Towel Bathing Suit of the 1950s

A prominent fashion photographer in the 1940s and 1950s, Nina Leen was one of the first female photographers to work for LIFE magazine. She grew up in Europe (Russian born) and her first camera was a Rolleiflex which she used to primarily photograph animals. Nina Leen is mostly known for her animal photography, but in the fashion world, she is well known for her classic and timeless fashion photography.


Here, a series photo taken by Nina Leen in the 1950s. The photographs show some models posing with creative and beautiful towel bathing suit on a beach of Florida.

Bathing suits in the 1950s had a slightly knitted feel to them and considerable weight compared to today’s thin fabrics. An effort was made to make smoother fabrics that hugged a woman’s curves but didn’t show any lumps and bumps. Bra tops were usually lined and many also had Pellon firmed bra cups. Some swimsuits were also boned in the chest area or on the torso (like a longline bra). Separate rubber swimming panties were worn under swimsuits to provide even more smoothing and shaping. Needless to say, the swimsuit was less about swimming and more about looking like a pinup.










October 24, 2021

1959 Drummond Sweaters Ad: Men Are Better Than Women!

This advertisement for Drummond sweaters targets men, focusing on their everyday performance, while also belittling the role of women.


The largest text besides the brand reads “men are better than women!”, which is followed by a statement about women only being useful indoors. This is further illustrated by the two men standing tall and relaxed on a mountain, one of them holding a rope over the edge where a woman is on the other end.

The purpose is to present the sweaters as items that look good anywhere, the well-dressed men becoming a spectacle that can be admired by women (the main audience they show off for), regardless of location. Men dressed in Drummond sweaters can be praised without having to go through the effort of bringing a woman out of her ‘zone of utility’. This advertisement depicts roles for each gender, relying on the value of a man’s ego.




50 Amazing Portraits of Swedish People Taken by John Alinder From the 1910s to the Early 1930s

The people depicted in John Alinder’s portraits are often looking straight into the camera. As if they can see us. As if their gaze can travel the hundred years or so that lie between their time and ours. As if they were saying, “You are alive now, but we were once alive.”


John Alinder, son of a farmer, was born in 1878 in the village of Sävasta, Altuna parish, in Uppland, a province in eastern central Sweden. Alinder remained in the village all his life. He chose not to take over his parents’ farm and instead became a self-taught photographer and jack of all trades. He was a music lover, holder of the Swedish agency for the British record label and gramophone brand His Master’s Voice. For a time he ran a country shop from his home, and he even operated an illicit bar for a while.

From the 1910s to the 1930s he portrayed the local people, the landscape around them and their way of life. He often photographed them in their homes and gardens, using the technology of the time, glass plates. These he developed in a small darkroom he had built and then made the prints in the sunlight.

The Alinder collection was “discovered” in the 1980s when a curator found over 8,000 glass plates stacked away in a library basement. Children placed on chairs, people perched in trees, laborers, confirmation candidates and old ladies; often depicted against a background of foliage and sprawling greenery penetrated by sunlight. Alinder’s portraiture allows for the magic of chance, both liberating and defining the subjects.










Photos of Malacca, Malaysia in 1971

Malacca is a state in Malaysia located in the southern region of the Malay Peninsula, next to the Strait of Malacca. The state is bordered by Negeri Sembilan to the north and west and Johor to the south. The exclave of Tanjung Tuan also borders Negeri Sembilan to the north. Its capital is Malacca City, which is 148 kilometres (92 miles) southeast of Malaysia's capital city Kuala Lumpur, 235 kilometres (146 miles) northwest of Johor’s largest city Johor Bahru and 95 km (59 miles) northwest of Johor’s second largest city, Batu Pahat. This historical city centre has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 7 July 2008.


Malacca is famous for its unique history and is one of the major tourist destinations in Malaysia. With a highly strategic state position for international trade routes, Malacca was once a well-known international trade centre in the East. Many traders anchored in Malacca, especially traders from Arabia, China and India, traded at the port of Malacca and from there were born many of the descendants and tribes that exist in Malacca to this day.

A great diversity of races and ethnicities have long existed among the local community. Malays, Chinese, Indians, Baba Nyonya, Kristang, Chitty and Eurasians are major ethnic groups living in the State of Malacca up to the present day.

These vintage photos were captured by wilford peloquin that show street scenes of Malacca in 1971.










Vintage Photos of Halloween Parties in the Late 1960s

Halloween activities include trick-or-treating (or the related guising and souling), attending Halloween costume parties, carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns, lighting bonfires, apple bobbing, divination games, playing pranks, visiting haunted attractions, telling scary stories, as well as watching horror films.

For some people, the Christian religious observances of All Hallows’ Eve, including attending church services and lighting candles on the graves of the dead, remain popular, although for others it is a secular celebration. Some Christians historically abstained from meat on All Hallows’ Eve, a tradition reflected in the eating of certain vegetarian foods on this vigil day, including apples, potato pancakes, and soul cakes.

These vintage photos were found by Mark Susina that show what Halloween parties looked like in the late 1960s.










Wonderful Knapp-Felt Hat Ads From the 1920s

No item of men’s apparel can give more pleasure, or cause more grief, than his hat. It should have quality, it should have style, it should be appropriate to the occasion, and it should be becoming. A well selected Knapp-Felt fills the bill in every particular.


So how does a company go from one man working out of a cow shed to the second largest hat company in America? (They did eventually become the largest, but that wasn’t until after 1970 and the closure of the Stetson factory in Philadelphia.)

The short, and perhaps overly obvious, answer is through a lot of hard work and dedication. Success becomes much more likely to happen when you throw innovation into the mix, and this is the case with Crofut & Knapp. Add in the talent of promoting your employees into positions where they can do the most for the company, and you have a recipe for success. Two key components went hand in hand with their success. First, they offered a high-quality product at premium prices. While the premium price created a hurdle to overcome with consumers, the second component dealt very well with that hurdle: marketing and advertising. In this, Crofut & Knapp were innovators, setting a standard of excellence that left the other hat companies playing catch-up.

The hatting industry underwent a monumental change in the first half of the nineteenth century due to the transportation revolution and the industrial revolution, just as most American industries did. The hat factory evolved from a small, locally-owned shop into a much larger facility employing ever greater numbers of people.

Prior to the industrial revolution, hat manufacturers worked out of small shops and sold their hats locally. The shop was run by a single craftsman, or master, who might employ up to perhaps as many as four apprentices. Each craftsman performed all of the required steps to make a hat from a handful of fur to a finished, wearable product. Each small shop served a town, or perhaps a county, but their market did not reach much beyond that.

With the advent of the industrial and transportation revolutions, machinery aided in the manufacturing process and the concept of division of labor meant that workers began specializing in different parts of the production process. Some factories only performed one part of the process, such as the forming of felt bodies, and left the finishing to other companies. Distribution of the hats was left up to jobbers in the cities. Some companies did keep everything in house. In any case, hat production was increased, hat prices became more affordable, and more people could afford to buy better quality hats.

Into this new era of mechanization came James H. Knapp, who started out exactly as hatters had for centuries, as a one-man operation. With the partnership of Andrew J. Crofut, they launched the Derby as their chief product, and began the long road to success. Much of the first fifty years of Crofut & Knapp is shrouded in the mists of time. Advertising was typically done in local papers by the retailers, usually consisting of text and very few, if any, images of the product. The text would extol the virtues of the product, addressing the needs of the individual being targeted in the ad.

It was not until well into the twentieth century that companies would change the nature of advertising, focusing not on customers’ needs, as had previously been the case, but on their wants and desires instead. Advertising would move away from the traditional textual analysis of the properties of the product into a much more ambiguous and visual form, designed to entice consumers to purchase the product merely because they desired it. Croft & Knapp led the way among hat manufacturers in this advertising makeover and perhaps among most industries as a whole.












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