Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Early Jean P

From the same 1948 issue of US Vogue as those photos of a 16-year-old Elizabeth I posted comes these two images of the glorious 50s top model Jean Patchett. Jean would have been only 21 or 22 when these photos were taken, and in the first year of her modelling career, which lasted until 1963. She signed with an agency in early 1948 and by the end of the year she was already a cover-girl, gracing the pages of Vogue.

The editorial that the photographs come from is called 'Fashions For A Man's Eye' and has models posing in some of Vogue's favourite recent frocks for the benefit of a panel of men who give their thoughts. It's all quite amusing really and is a concept still used in magazines today.

As the point of this issue is 'Will a man like them?' we went to four acidulous young columnists, who were part of the male rebellion against the new-born new look a year and a half ago; showed them the dresses, invited them to say exactly what they wanted to about them, pro or con.

You might like to know that the judge for Jean's first dress said men embarrass easily. This dress isn't embarrassing.
And for the second dress the male critic said I like halter-tops. They show off a good back.

When it comes to men, it seems not too much has changed. All the men declared that they detested ballet flats! (Lucky we don't care what they think).

The advertisements in this issue are just as exciting to pore over as the fashion editorials. I think my favourite frock is the gorgeous Patullo - Jo Copeland for the opening of the Opera ... for a brilliant ball. Patullo - Copeland was a shared ready-to-wear label designed by Jospehine Copeland, based in New York, that existed from the 20s through to the 60s. You can read more about her over at the Vintage Fashion Guild.

Interestingly her daughter, the novelist Lois Gould, wrote a memoir in the 1990s about her mother, from a child's perspective. Called Mommy Dressing I'm sure it would provide a fascinating insight into the world of early American high fashion.


Bubble My Licorice said...

great post and the photos are amazing!this is the first time I'm reading for Jean Patchett.seems to be a glorious model.

what are they wearing now said...

Great post Louise. Oh the clothes, photography, model ... just the sheer elegance.

what are they wearing now said...

Hi Louise again,
Just had to post to your post on Jean Patchett because I am so in love with the top photo. Thanks again.

Louise said...

Thanks for that!