Tuesday, April 28, 2009

handprinted "Kilroy was here" t-shirt (1947)

"Coney Island, 1947" photo by Sid Grossman (look him up, awesome photographer!)

I was just checking out my buddy Jimmy's blog over at defunk'd which features an incredible ebay find you must see- go ahead and check it out, i'll wait- but it got me thinking about the utilitarian beauty of the handprinted t-shirt. I remembered this photo by Sid Grossman that I saw a few weeks ago. It stopped me in my tracks because I thought that handprinted t-shirts were an outgrowth of punk rather than at the very roots of nascent American teenage culture. I shall look deeper into this.

How perfect is it that this young lady took to adding the legendary post-WWII graffiti "Kilroy was here" to her t-shirt? The famous slogan is shrouded in mystery, but it somehow caught the imagination of a generation. "Kilroy was here" is akin to the modern practice of idiotically commenting "first!" to a blog entry or news story on the internet- there's no point but there's a certain thrill to getting there first and having everyone else who follows see that you have already staked claim to this turf. Supposedly, James Kilroy was a shipyard inspector in Quincy, MA, during World War II and would chalk "Kilroy was here" on every bulkhead he inspected. GIs were baffled by this ubiquitous slogan, but took to spreading this simple and mysterious image throughout the world. The joke is not so much what the phrase says, but where it would turn up. A perhaps apocryphal story claims that an outhouse was specially constructed for only the world leaders at Pottsdam. As Stalin emerged from christening the outhouse, he supposedly queried an aide, "Who is Kilroy?"

Not to be confused with:

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Karen Allen in National Lampoon Black Sox t-shirt (1977)

I have had a huge crush on Karen Allen since her turn as Marion in Raiders of the Lost Ark, since I was too young to see Animal House or The Wanderers before that. She just has that too-smart-and-funny-for-you but still devoted girlfriend quality about her, ya know? She especially gets me in Scrooged as well (not such much Starman, which is frigging awful).

Enlarge this cute ad to see more of what I mean. I'd LOVE that shirt in an XL!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Girl in a glass house (1942)

"This girl in a glass house is putting finishing touches on the bombardier nose section of a B-17F navy bomber, Long Beach, Calif. She's one of many capable women workers in the Douglas Aircraft Company plant. Better known as the "Flying Fortress," the B-17F is a later model of the B-17 which distinguished itself in action in the South Pacific, over Germany and elsewhere. It is a long range, high altitude heavy bomber, with a crew of seven to nine men, and with armament sufficient to defend itself on daylight missions"

photos by Alfred T. Palmer.

I absolutely LOVE the style of all of the Rosie the Riveters. This particular photographer, Alfred T. Palmer, was especially gifted at capturing their hardworking femininity. I love how women of that era managed to be stylish and feminine while keeping the world safe for Democracy.

previous posts: Save vs Death (my other blog) "the many faces of Rosie the Riveter"
Carpenter at work on Douglas Dam, Tennessee (1942)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Gayle Sayers and Billy Dee Williams on the set of "Brian's Song" (1971)

it seems that something gets in my eye every time I watch this classic.

Gayle Sayers is one of the all time greats on and off the field.

Pendleton ad (1974)

Jeez, is this artwork Seventies enough for you? The sort of monochromatic plaid with fake fur collar jacket reminds me of Archie Bunker and every Polish grandfather in Chicago.

Pendleton is still pretty right on in my book. I love their flannel shirts and hunting jackets. I still have my heart set on an old school Pendleton blanket from before WWII.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Evel Knievel for Chuckles brand candy (1974)

"Diamonds, not to mention sponsor's decals, are a boy's best friend"

Monday, April 20, 2009

selling on ebay: Swatch funwear camp shirt (1986)

I just listed this gorgeous Swatch camp shirt on ebay. There was not much about Swatch funwear on the internet, but these were all the rage when I was in Junior High. Unfortunately, I could not afford Swatch gear when I was a kid, though I did bully a poor Indian kid at my high school in to selling me his X swatch a few years later at the tail end of the Swatch trend- which I later sold on ebay after unfortunatley shattering the face a few years ago after wearing it almost every day for 10+ years. I really dig the comic book art on this shirt, but the internet couldn't help me to find the name of the artiste'. There are a few print advertisements on eBay for Funwear, confirming the date on this item.

Swatch Funwear (1987)

tag sticker grabbed from Flickr

Every girl in my Junior High had this sticker affixed to her Trapper Keeper. Ah, this image brings back many memories of plaid skirts, jelly bracelets, banana clips and saddle oxfords. Damn you, Catholic school girl fixation!

From Fortune Magazine, August 5, 1985- so don't bother calling your broker. Please note- if Fortune Magazine describes something as "funky", you must understand that you have the blessing of corporate connoisseurs of dubious middle class cool and your days are numbered:

"The Swiss watch industry ticked back to life with Swatch, a popular,
inexpensive plastic watch sold by Swatch Watch U.S.A., a subsidiary of
Switzerland's ETA. Now the company is opening 300
Swatch shops in U.S. department stores to sell Swatch-brand items such as
sweatshirts, sunglasses, and funwear -- funky shirts, pants, and hats -- in
addition to watches. Retail sales from Swatch products are expected to top
$140 million in 1985, vs. $32 million last year. "

Sunday, April 19, 2009

those were different times- the Philadelphia Fillies (1971)

from the same April 19, 1971 Sports Illustrated article:

"Throughout the game considerable fan reaction was focused on the usherettes, known as the Fillies. There were 140 of them, recruited from 432 applicants after being advised by letter to wear "your shortest skirt and tightest blouse" to the interviews. The 35 Fillies officially designated as best looking were called, collectively, the Hot Pants Patrol and were attired in red hot pants. in 48 degree inauguration-day weather they were also fitted out in blue cold legs."

Sorry about the terrible screen grab. Any more info about the Fillies would be appreciated, as I am an afficiando of gams, hot pants, and go-go boots.

previous posts: The Soxettes

Friday, April 17, 2009

Red socks for the Chicago White Sox (1971)

From April 19, 1971 issue of Sports Illustrated.
I dig the red and of course LOVE the stirrups!

Monday, April 13, 2009

1930s Wisconsin embroidered gym shirt

Sexton Athletic Togs! I love the ring to that.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Eddie Einhorn, Chicago White Sox vice chairman (1983)

Grabbed from Sports Illustrated, 1983
I've never seen a White Sox jacket like this- perhaps Mr. Einhorn had it commissioned for himself? Eddie Einhorn, who is still part owner of the Sox, made his fortune in syndicating college basketball in the Fifties and Sixties and later became the head of CBS Sports.
I dig how the stripes echo but do not copy the horizontal stripes of the early Eighties White Sox uniforms. I'm sure this thing was 100% polyester.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

vintage ad: Converse "The Winner" shoes exclusively for Sears (1974)

I spotted these kicks over on The Vintage Aficionado's brilliant "Going once, going twice, going broke" ebay round up section last week and then stumbled upon them again today whilst flipping through an old Sports Illustrated- in the same badass colors no less! These bad larrys apparently go for $250+ on eBay these days.

Sasson- official jeans of the New York Rangers (1980)

Grabbed from Paco Camino
Sasson jeans were also the favored jeans of moms everywhere and the wannabe Valley Girls in my grade school in Houma, Louisiana in 1980. The 1980-81 Rangers finished 4th in the Patrick and were swept out of the playoffs by the Islanders. Ooh la la!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Runner Magazine advertisement (1981)

More like run from us!
I dig the Runner shirt and old school Nikes, but I could do without the shorty short shorts on dudes and three ring circus socks.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Britt Eklund and Peter Sellers- comic book dress

photo grabbed from Sugar and Spice

I'm not real big on ladies clothing, except in a rumpled pile at the end of my bed- am I right, fellas? huh huh! But I know what I like. I'm kind of breaking my own rule about focusing only on American style since Britt was born in Stockholm (another city on my must-visit list), but this photo was too good to not pass on. Ms. Eklund in her prime made anything look good.
Gentlemen, this is even more proof that if you are outrageously funny and fabulously wealthy, you get the best dames. Keep working on those prat falls. Britt and Peter were married from 1964-1968, arguably Britt's prime era of doability, those she was extremely hot in The Man with the Golden Gun, the ninth James Bond film which opened in 1974. Her later taste in dudes took a real plunge in the 70s, seeing how she dated Rod freaking Stewart, but she bounced back in the Eighties, marrying Slim Jim Phantom, drummer of the Stray Cats!
Anyway, cool dress and purse I guess, but it takes a world-class dame like Britt to do it justice!

Britt Eklund and Peter Sellers, 1964.

Monday, April 6, 2009

1924 Chicago White Sox baseball jersey, or hey brother, can you spare a $10,000 starting bid?

Grabbed from the Uniwatch blog- From the auction:
"To the best of our knowledge, this is one of only three 1924 Chicago World Tour
uniforms in existence...The cream-colored flannel jersey is lettered “Chicago”
across the front in two-tone red on navy felt. Identical “Flag” patches adorn
each sleeve. Both the sleeve ends and collar display a red and blue piping. The
front of the collar also features four small felt “Stars” (two red and two blue). A “Spalding” label appears in the collar as does a white strip tag lettered “Chicago –
Picinich – 40” (team, player, jersey size). The name “Picinich” is stitched in navy on the rear right tail...The 1924 World Tour was the third such tour made by the New York Giants and Chicago White Sox, with the first two having taken place in 1913/1914 and 1917, respectively. As stated in the official program, “The object and aim of the tour of Europe by America’s two great baseball teams from its two largest cities, namely New York and Chicago, has a twofold object. One is to exhibit America’s National Game in foreign lands – by the game’s greatest exponents, namely the New York Giants, champions of the National League, and the Chicago White Sox, members of the American League. But the higher and greater object of this trip to Europe is to try and transplant America’s game in athletic and sport-loving countries – who desire to adopt some game that has both the athletic and mental attributes conducive to the physical development of the youth of their country.” Like the previous two trips made by the clubs, the nucleus of each roster consisted of members of the Giants and White Sox, but each lineup was augmented by players from other Major League clubs. Val Picinich was a member of the Boston Red Sox in 1924 and, along with Washington’s Muddy Ruel, was one of the two catchers on the White Sox roster. The tour took the clubs to seven countries, including England, France, Italy, and Germany, and was highly celebrated at the time. It must be noted that world baseball tours were very infrequent, and the 1924 tour marked the last one made by the Giants and White Sox. The next major world tour did not occur until 1931, when an all-star contingent, led by Lou Gehrig, traveled to Japan."
Dear God! It's bad enough that the Sox home open was SNOWED OUT, but to stumble across this absolutely beautiful jersey has got me itching for the beginning of baseball season in the worst way! When I'm an eccentric internet millionaire, I will buy these kinds of things on a whim for my White Sox museum/pinball emporium/ punk rock show space/ vintage video game arcade/ vintage record listening club and exchange that I will open within walking distance of my season tickets at Comiskey behind home plate. Won't you help me to realize that dream?

Carpenter at work on Douglas Dam, Tennessee (1942)

Carpenter at work on Douglas Dam, Tennessee (TVA) (LOC)
Originally uploaded by The Library of Congress

Classic American propaganda and classic American vintage workwear style. This is the real deal!

Reminds me of a Woody Guthrie song- Pastures of Plenty:

Green pastures of plenty from dry desert ground
From the Grand Coulee Dam where the waters run down
Every state in the Union us migrants have been
We'll work in this fight and we'll fight till we win

It's always we rambled, that river and I
All along your green valley, I will work till I die
My land I'll defend with my life if it be
Cause my pastures of plenty must always be free

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Grabowski Shuffle style guide

Designed by Travis of Punk Rock Paint for the ubernerdario Card Blog League ie fantasy baseball for supernerds. Uh-mazing! Check out all of the other style sheets there and drool with envy!

Friday, April 3, 2009

A Clockwork Orange sweater

Made exclusively for Stanley Kubrick to commemorate the film (and to distribute to *important* cast and crew members only — I showed those wankers, eh?), this limited edition sweater features an Alex DeLarge (Malcolm McDowell) appliqui, droog eyeball patches on the left and right sleeves, a RITVA MAN tag, and the number 1 embroidered in the collar. There is also a handwritten tag reading "Clockwork Orange by Stanley Kubrick, HAWK FILMS, designers proof, 1/3, Edition of 30, 1972 MR [Mike Ross]."

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Frank Gifford, Jerry West, and Bobby Hull- Jantzen pitchmen

6% Chemstrand Blue C Spandex
Originally uploaded by IAAFOTS

"As Frank Gifford, in the $7 webbed belt style, says, it gives more than it gets. Jerry West wears crossed belt loop stretch, about $8. Bobby Hull is in the button tab stretch, about $6. Comfortable, tough, good-looking, and available in the colors shown on the surfboard."

Jantzen Actionwear advertisement from the May 27, 1966 issue of Life.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Truck-About-Town- Mack bulldog ad (1963)

A Truck-About-Town
Originally uploaded by IAAFOTS

Mack Trucks advertisement for the new Mack MB, from the July 1963 issue of Fortune.