Vintage Friday

buttermilk_pancakes.jpg Long ago I told Paper Dolls for Boys that I would post vintage photos on Fridays, but I really haven’t got that many great vintage photos.

I do however have a nice collection of mid-century cookbooks — many I found when I bought two big boxes of old papers at an auction. They appear to be the entire 1950-60’s Home Economics classroom files of a woman named Frances, and are full of leaflets and brochures about choosing silverware, how to use a deep freeze, bug sprays, dieting, and more.

I love looking at these old cookbooks, finding a lot of humor and inspiration for my work from the drawings and advertising copy in these retro pieces of domestic history.

So Tracy, I hope you won’t mind if I post some of these instead of photos. For some more inspiration from retro graphics, check out my Flickr set here and the Flickr group mid-century illustrated.

Update: I almost forgot to post these, here are some folks who actually did the photos:
Los Angeles is My Beat

Laughing Living and Loving in Austin
A Jen Too Many
and  be sure to check out the hula hoops on

10 thoughts on “Vintage Friday”

  1. Reading about your vintage collection and how part of it talks about ‘how to use a deep freeze’, reminded me of something and I just thought you would find it humorous…
    I spent 5 prime childhood years growing up in Buras, LA (60 miles South of New Orleans). English was the official language, but it was kind of different. Down there, a “deep freeze” was a “chesta-freeze”. For some reason, it still makes me laugh-and I don’t know why.

  2. It took a long time to get my large collection of the pamphlets that were packed with all those exciting new appliance introduced in the 40’s and 50’s. Marvelous drawings and photos. I came home to a backed-up sewer in the basement. My collection smelled too bad for me to iron them flat. I do have several oookbooks and housekeeping books from the early 1900’s. To keep butter fresh without refrigeration, wrap in a wet gunny sack and hang from a tree in the shade. The breeze flowing thru the wet sack keeps it cool.


  3. Oh I love the graphics and photos of 50s & 60s cookbooks! All those pineapple rings with maraschino cherries just get me. The Suzannas Pancake mix is great. I love her spatula and her tongue sticking out!

  4. LOVE those old cookbook graphics! I, too, have a fairly large collection of cooking, sewing, knitting and crochet ephemera! Hmmm? Great idea to post it on VPF!

  5. Hi Tracy, I saw your post earlier today with the ephemara, that’s what gave me the idea.

    I know I have some packed away, but the cookbooks are something I’ve been wanting to sort through for a while, since they really do give me new ideas for my own drawings.

    Thanks for sticking with me!

  6. How funny! Today I posted some family ephemera, grew a little boxed in by the whole photo thing!

    I LOVE the vintage cookbook image of the pancakes in her belly. Yum!

    Play along anyway you want! Just happy to be playing together. 🙂

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