Friday, May 13, 2011

Pretty in Pink

Helen's Day...

What's that? Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound already?
Oh, hello there, you caught Helen relaxing around her home in a kicky after bath outfit she whipped up from her bathroom linens! A confident woman can look attractive and at ease in anything, n'est ce pas? But better get changed...

Ahhh, that's better. Here I am in my lovely pink hostess outfit, la la , something I just threw on when a few friends popped in unexpectedly... what a breeze... what a simple matter of good grooming and planning... what... a load of... of... creme de bain.

Creme de Bain... cream of the bath? Enriched with Cream of the bath! Oh, I needed more of that! 
That's not me, not in the photo and not in a million years. We did have a surprise lunch guest today and you know what I did? I shoved everything on the kitchen table into a handy Target bag (because in Helen's house there is ALWAYS a handy Target bag), threw the tablecloth down the stairs in the general direction of the laundry room and lit a Yankee Candle. My appearance? I think I dug my shoes out from under the bed and put them on. That's real life but ever since... well, ever, women have been told we have to look...
I have this exact outfit for housecleaning!
Thank heaven for women like Peg Bracken - this from my new find -  I HATE TO HOUSEKEEP
by Peg Bracken, circa 1964. The photos are from another find this week - a Ladies Home Journal, also 1964. Both came into my orbital path the same time as the story of the kiddie pageant mom who botoxed her 8 year old to get rid of facial lines.
"OMG, I know she's 9 but she totally looks 71/2!"

Deep Breath. But it's ever been thus, Loved Ones. Women have been told how to dress, how to wear their hair, how to BE since biblical times, probably before.
Zeigfield Girls were the ideal of their day.

By the 1950s marketing had gotten into the game and pamplets like this disguised and guides for everything from better living to coping with the problems of becoming a woman - think you know what this one - with a grooming check list and a quiz to see how grown up you are is selling?
It's from a deodorant company! Betcha didn't see THAT coming.
One of the joys I've had these last few months of actually actively blogging and reading far and wide, I have seen so many beautiful women (yes, I mostly read blogs by women, that's what interests me) beautiful in their attitudes, and in the generosity, in their senses of humor, their talent, their fashion sense, the way they live their lives. How I wish there were pageants for those qualities -- to show little girls that there is so much more to being lovely than cosmetics, clothes and conformity.
(And that certain pageant moms could get injected with a dose of that brand of real 'grown up' beauty.)

Have a great weekend - I am going to try to make a dress from towels and rub tons of creme de bain on my skin to see if I can be younger looking by Monday! (Hey, I said I admired inner beauty, not that I didn't want to hang on to the outer stuff as long as possible!)


  1. I wish I believed that we had come a long way since the 50s in believing that beauty comes in all sizes, shapes, colors and ages, but in some ways I think we're worse today than back then. Now many girls even think they have to wear certain designer brands to be pretty. So sad...

  2. There is a rather sweaty women who i see walking down the road most days that could do with a towel dress (or underwear eugh! lol). Blogger pagent - sweet! mwah Scarlett x

  3. Hello Helen:
    We cannot imangine you at any point, anywhere, other than 'in the pink'.

  4. Dana - I think it's gone on so long, the marketing of beauty and what is beautiful that it's part of every day life. isn't it?

  5. Scarlett - yikes! Perhaps you can offer her some cream of the bath.

    Lance and Jane, thank you. (I did have a terrible year when I wore only white then one day I bought a pink shirt and my son exclaimed - You're Back!) Was glad to read your tale of coming back.

  6. AWESOME!! I am a new follower right back at ya! Thank you for following me! Your blog is so cute and I have only read the first post! Off to read more!!

  7. Great post. I am sure Helen was pleased you featured her on Pink Saturday.

  8. I adore Peg Bracken and have all of her books! And I love your pink pictures...maybe I'll join that meme today too :)

    Happy Saturday!

  9. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder... right???
    Then why, oh why ,Dear Helen do I never leave the house without eye makeup and my hair done. lol. :)
    Love this post and the crazy botox mom, is just that CRAZY!

  10. Chuckle! You are a kick! Love my visits with you.
    Have a beautiful PINK weekend ~
    TTFN ~

    5 Day GIVEAWAY, pop over

  11. Hi! So glad you found me, 'cause in turn I found you!! I'm your newest follower. Thanks for following me, too! Your sweet funny blog is truly a breath of fresh air! Love it! I've looked over quite a few of your past posts and I must admit I actually have the Amy Vanderbilt Complete Book of Etiquette!! It was my mother's Bible! LOL

    Thanks for being excited about our upcoming Wedding Blog Party on June 10th! If you add my button about it to your sidebar or decide to party with us, just let me know and I'll add you to my sidebar participants and add a couple of extra entries for you into my giveaway!

    Big TX Hugs,
    Angelic Accents

  12. Happy Pink Saturday right back at everyone. Have to say it brings around the nicest folks.

  13. Hi there, I have to say I got a real kick put of this post! When I see a Dear Helen Hartman in my in box, I can't wait to open it! I know I will be entertained, and there's always a lesson to be learned...
    Thanks for stopping by the other day...I lost the comments from my post(blogger) but yours sticks with me,,,
    Pinkim from TrulySimplyPink

  14. You are a royal peach! Loved this post. I was appalled over the Botox story. I am with you, let's teach girls about serving others,about being honest, and making the world a better place. All of this vanity is freaking me out! Enjoy the rest of your weekend. :)

  15. Love this blog of yours....and your writing one, too. I look forward to reading more of both when I have a bit more time.

    I was also so shocked to see that crazy mom injecting Botox into her little girl's face! Lordy...she's a wacko to be sure, but sadly it's pretty much a statement of our society. Makes me realize how hard it is to be a sane parent in this day and age with all of the pressure put on "superficial" stuff. I honestly am grateful for growing up fairly poor. . . we appreciated what we had and certainly didn't have the money for entry fees into beauty and dad were busy paying bills and putting food on the table.

    Hope you had a great Pink Saturday. dana

  16. The lady in the "How To Look As Good As The Lord Intended" has to be my favourite fashion icon ever. I'm a domestic slattern, too. Nothing beats a carrier bag and a swift sweep of the arm when a guest threatens to make an appearance. xxx

  17. And this is one gorgeous post!!!! I took a day off on Friday to escape the mayhem at home and found the best book. Ready for this? It is from 1924 and called "How to be a Spinster". It's a beauty...all leather bound and everything. I can't wait to sit down and read the advice in it. (that might be sometime next year....ha!) Happy Pink Saturday. xo Lynn

  18. are one funny lady. I so enjoy reading your tongue-in-cheek posts. Will you make me one of those towel dresses too?

  19. Y'all make me smile, thanks for commenting! How To Be A Spinster? You must share when you get the chance to read it! I made a towel dress just this morning - it was a wrap around! Made a turban hat too!

  20. Love these photos! where on earth do you get them? :-) Great blog!


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