Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fashion Files - Beauty on a Budget: Woollies

Winter isn't over yet, folks! Perhaps some chic and toasty winter fashions by Elizabeth will warm you up?!

"Beauty on a Budget"
by Elizabeth
Young Love #124 (March 1977)


  1. I hope you don't mind me asking you a question inspired by "beauty on a budget"? One of things I've always been struck by is how poorly the superhero mainstream of US comics actually represents the visual realities of American life. By this I mean that, for example, when I came across Joe Meyerowitz's photos of '70s New York, or Helen Levitt's work in the same city, I was naively astonished by how unlike the version of NYC being peddled in Marvel & DC comics it was. (I was British & young, so please forgive me!)I know of course that comics didn't pay well enough for most artists to research even their own world, but is it possible that romance books, even to a small degree, had to be more accurate in areas like fashion? Perhaps the audience for romance books would notice if the representations of hair and dress, for example, were incredibly dated? Is it possible there's just a touch more of the visual sense of the time in romance comics than elsewhere in the mainstream output from those decades?

  2. Jacque: Apparently these beauties have budgets that are so strapped they can't afford a good meal. Jeez, they're skinny. That one in the underwear looks malnourished. For heaven's sake, someone make that poor child a sandwich! -- Mykal

  3. colsmi: Excellent observation! I definitely think that the romance comics portray quite accurately the fashions of the time, though some outfits may have been a bit outlandish. I am guessing that many artists observed the women and men around them (family, friends) as well as turned to fashion magazines and catalogs for inspiration. Staying on top of fashion and trends would have benefited the publishers, I am inclined to think. Not only could readers turn to the romance comics for a good story, but I am willing to bet that a number of young readers flipped through the pages to fantasize the potential of their own closets, and emulate and integrate aspects of what they saw into their wardrobes. I have lots more fashion posts coming up in the near future, so be sure to stay tuned!!!

    Mykal: They are skinny, but remember -- fashion is meant to be viewed on a hanger. Not on a real person! I actually like them; their stylized rosy cheeks are cute. Although it makes me regret having that ice cream this evening... :)

  4. Jacque: Thank you for so helping me with my question. I certainly will be staying tuned!