Category Archives: Vintage Kiddo Photos

Seeing the Past in the Present :: Amazing Photos

Being a vintage lover, I’m expecially fond of old photographs. I’ve posted them on here many times—found images from old photo albums, estate sale goodies and thrift store scores. Part of the fun, I think, is examining them for details….like the clothes the people are wearing, the furniture and knick knacks in the background or cars on the street. I recently stumbled upon a really cool take on the “old meets new” photo I’ve been dying to share with you! Maybe you’ve seen them before, but these were all new to me when I discovered the Looking into the Past Flickr group. You take an old photograph, go back to the location where it was first taken and line up the perspective…..snap a new photo that shows the old in a modern context. It sounds complicated the way I’m describing it, but it’s very simple. Take a look! I think it’s utterly fascinating. Some photos require a second look….

image: amy cox

image: jasonepowell

image: haunted snowfort

image: ohdarling

image: katie artzner

image: Edward Barnieha

image: jasonepowell

image: katie artzner

image: haunted snowfort

Pretty cool huh. There is something so beautifully nostalgic and poignant about the images. I can’t wait to dig through my old photo albums and try this out myself!

Vintage Kiddo :: Creepy Cool Retro Halloween Costumes

So I was shopping the other day and wandered into the Halloween aisle. I was kind of bummed out and horrified by all the creepy masks—the weirdo from the Saw movies, the Scream ghoul, super slasher monsters. I thought to myself, “Where is the childhood innocence? Who lets their kid dress up as a crazy murderer?? These masks are terrifying!” I shook my head thinking, “It’s not like back in the day when we were kids!”

Um…..OK. So I’m not sure when you last looked at old school Halloween masks, but shut mah mouth because some of these are positively terrifying!!! The cheap plastic only adds to the appeal. Of course I still love ’em all. And frankly, they’re miles better than the Scream ghoul. Let’s take a look at come vintage kiddo Halloween pics. I swear each kid is better than the next:

Yes the clown is terrifying, but my heart belongs to the stressed out little Planet of the Apes dude on the end.

The vacant Snoopy. That draggy clown. The “phonin’ it in” Charlie Brown. All genius. Not sure what’s happening with the faceless Mr. Skelly. Is that kid just wearing a pulled down hat over his head??

OK. These little kiddos from 1951 are actually really cute.

I love that you can see her little dress in the reflection of the mirror. So sweet!

Here are the same happy kidlets one year later:

I’m amazed at this nonchalant baby…like it ain’t nuthin’ but a thang….If that devil child showed up at my door step I’d run screaming. I can’t imagine anything more terrifying.

Oh wait, that’s because this little creeper hadn’t showed up yet:

This poor child is like a Tretchikoff painting on acid.

I can’t stop starring at and giggling at this next kiddo:

That poor child….looks like a classic victim of the dreaded, “It’s freezing out there! You wear a coat under that costume or you’ll catch your death of cold!” I always hated when mom made us wear our coats under our costumes.

These guys are actually all pretty cute:

The Top Hat wearing ghost is oddly adorable. Wolfie would never have let me get away with that…

This next one kills me. Devils in a Red Granny Flannel Dress.

OK, check out the wig on the little nurse. Hee.

I love this one. What child decides that they want to be George Washington??

Count Chocula? Cheap Bear in a Micky Sweat shirt? Love these guys…

Mod Darth Vader looking suspiciously like an Ewok….

And finally, my favorite of the bunch:

The Colonel Sanders girl? I mean….c’mon now. Seriously, I can’t wait for Halloween.

IMAGES: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Don’t forget, there is still time to send me your Best and Worst Homemade Costume Photos! Check here for details! We’ll be posting the Costume Parade on Wednesday!!

Real Life: Fairyland.

One of the real joys of living where I do is that I’m less than 15 minutes away from Fairyland!

What is Fairyland you ask?

I must admit, I had no clue either for the first 15 years of living in the Bay Area. I used to see the technicolor sign early in the morning when I rowed on Lake Merritt, but I finally experienced it as I should—as a parent the other weekend and had a blast. I might never have thought of going until I saw these cutie pie pictures of Wolfie going and rave reviews from Alix.

See that key that Wolfie is using?  Well, a big part of Fairyland lore and history centers around the Talking Storybooks and Magic Keys.

At every little tableau, like the Snow White one Wolfie is at, there would be a small box that boys and girls could insert a special magic key. Once the key was in the box, it would spill out some delightful little Bing Crosby-like diddy that matched the little scene. Pure vintage awesomeness. They just created a new magic key for its 60th anniversary celebration last weekend!

Oh, and the Peach had such a good time. Who wouldn’t when you see things as yummy as this:

Fairyland was built in 1950 by the Oakland Lake Merritt Breakfast Club.  Rumor has it Walt Disney even came to Fairyland often to get ideas for Disneyland.  Numerous artists have contributed exhibits, murals, puppetry, and sculptures to the park. Some of the better-known artists are Ruth Asawa and Frank Oz. I wonder who did these for these two cuties, eh?

The park opened on September 2, 1950. Admission was 9 to 14 cents, depending on age. The original guides to the park were a dwarfish married couple dressed in glamorous Munchkin-style costumes. How terrifying would that have been!

The entrance to the park was the shoe from The Old Woman in the Shoe. The entrance through the shoe was sized for children so that adults had to bend over to go through. When we went you could see that the Old Woman in the Shoe was still kicking, although her digs had certainly re-heeled and polished up a bit.

It’s amazing to see how little has changed from when it was built in the fifties.

And a few signs of the times…

There weren’t that many rides, but there were enough to keep the average six year old very happy. Check out this great Alice in Wonderland ride.

The Peach was completely entranced. Albeit a bit nervous at first…

And after a little coaxing she also was a big fan of the crooked house too.

Sadly, the Peach tuckered out before we could get to the big attraction—Willie the Whale!

When we told our neighbor, Joyce that we went to Fairyland that afternoon, she smiled and asked about good old Willie the Whale. Joyce grew up in the house next door and inherited it from her parents.  She is a long-time resident of the East Bay and went to Fairyland herself as a little girl.  She said that everyone who grew up going to Fairyland and returned as a parent always says the same thing—”I remember the whale being MUCH bigger!”

I wonder what the Peach will think of it when she’s an adult?  We plan to go again very soon!

Say CHEESE! Vintage School Photos Have Style.

Greetings friends! I’m back from a wee, sunny vacation and can I just tell ya that I feel soooo refreshed. Greg, Wolfie and I hit the Tiki Oasis weekender down in San Digeo and it was a totally needed little spoonful of awesome sauce. My friend sweet friend Doe and her hubs Otto throw one heckuva party, you’ll die when you see how fab it was! I took a zillion photos and can’t wait to share them all with you (I went crazy on the photos—I think I took over 400!!!!) so it will take me a day or two to sort through ’em all. The weekend was all about sun, fun, retro fashions, mai tais, great music and lots of family-friendly action down at the pool. Wolfie was even in a little fashion show for my friend Stephanie, of The Pineapple Princess Shop. Hilariously adorable.

In the mean time, can we West Coasters just brag for a moment? HOUSTON, WE HAVE SUMMER!!!!!!!!! Of course San Francisco had to be fashionably late, but we are *finally* experiencing what you all have been yackin’ about all summer long. HEAT. People, we are actually in the midst of a heat wave, propa. It was 98 degrees in downtown SF, which is UNHEARD OF.

So beside marveling at the hot hot weather, I’ve totally got school on my brain. School starts August 30 out here, and I can’t believe my little guy is going to be a first grader. I know some of you are already in the throes of a new school and others are gearing up for everything. I thought it would be fun to take a look at some classic Classroom Photos. I am obsessed with these, I think they are so cool. You just want to know the stories behind all these sassy little kiddos! Make sure you check out all the great fashions goin’ on…..

This first one is Mrs. Cliett’s Third Grade class, Shiver Elementary, 1963-64, Cairo, Georgia. Mrs. Cliett looks about a million years old, but I love her prim grey suit! You know she was the kid of crankster who rapped her ruler on yer knuckles.

image: janet sumner
Best Fashions: bottom row, red polka dot dress and cat eye glasses. yeah! also, a handsome row of lads on the top there..

This next one is also adorable. Grade 1 and 2 at Gray’s Lake Elementary, 1955. A whole lotta plaid going on.

image: takomabibelot.

On to the 70s….and COLOR, COLOR, COLOR. Mrs. Fujita’s Grade 1 & 2 class at Haskell Elementary in 1977.

image: C-Monster
Best Fashions: where to start? bottom row, love the two pinafore girls but hellllo jumpsuit on the end! Please note how teensy Mrs. Haskell is on the end there behind THE JUMPSUIT. Also, middle row, middle girl with huge bow is awesome, but the the two guys on the top row ends (far left, denim vest and far right…little bad ass stance) rule.

Next, Eisenhower School Kindergarten class 1973, Fergus Falls Minnesota. Dig that crazy teacher’s suit. WHOO, WHOOO is wearing an owl pendant? Why yes I do believe it’s Mrs. Teacher Lady.

image: Precious Kitty Kat
Best Fashions: the two kids with the spex are amazing, but BOTTOM ROW WINS! red, white blue dressie and tights, FOUR cute pants set, a boy with tie…..and a crochet vest on the end. The owner of this photo is the adorable girl on top in red and white!

Miss Michelle Frenette’s First Grade Class at Eisenhower Elementary School, 1974, Fergus Falls Minnesota.

image: Precious Kitty Kat.
Best Fashions: Love the middle row boys on the end (baby Joey Lawrence Bowl Cut on the left and cutie cowby on the right) but again the bottom row takes it. This time with the Plaid-O-Rama pants suit, plaid maxi skirt, the baby blue maxi dress, boy with tie AND yellow pants suit with photo of a water fall on it. Huzzah! Feeling badly for girl in sweatshirt. I bet her mom forgot it was picture day. Also, i think that’s the same kid in the tie as above…. love Miss Frenette’s jaunty neck scarf too.

Mrs. Amundson’s Second Grade Class at Eisenhower Elementary School, 1975, Fergus Falls Minnesota.

image: Precious Kitty Kat.

I love this photo from a primary school in Scotland. But uh oh, someone wore their jumper/ski sweater instead of regulation ties. Minus ten points Gryffindor!

image: joevl, Catrine Primary School, 1970s.

This is perhaps my favorite. Such a bunch of cuties. The boy’s all look like *such* rascals.

image: joevl, Catrine Primary School, Scotland, 1970s.

Miss Davis’ first grade class at Northside Grammar School, 1961. Hmm. “Miss” Davis is looking a little long in the tooth…

Check out the groovy Miss Groob’s Third Grade Class at Sheridan Elementary School, 1973-74 in Ohio.

image: brian glass

Mrs. Alford’s  kindergarten class at Spring Shadows Elementary, 1971-72.

Oh 70s, how we love ya. This whole class wins Best Dressed.  Front row snazzers, Cindy Brady on the end, two pairs of gogo boots, little boy in purple on top left….and especially Mrs. Alford’s crazy zig zag poly dress!

Mrs. Thren’s fourth grade class at Landisville Elementary in Hempfield, Pennsylvania. 1974-75.

image: brechtbug
Best Fashions: All the kids are swell, but helllllo gams! Check out those minis on the teachers!

Let’s take a little jaunt across the pond and check out some the “Preschool” (aka Kindergarten) class at the Princes Marijke School in Nieuw-Vennep, The Netherlands. 1974. LOVE all the colorful clothing.

image: christiaanV
Best Fashions: how could I pick?? But the little guy RECLINING is kind of brilliant.

Here’s the same school the next year in 1975, First Grade Class:

image: christiaanV

And finally, we head back to the states to Houston, Texas. This is Mrs. Dahlem’s First Grade Class Spring Shadows Elementary, 1972-73

image: Rowland Kodachrome
Best Fashions: These guys win BEST SHOES all around. Gogo boots, mod little saddle shoes, and even t-straps on Mrs. Dahlem. Little girl on the top right is kind of fabulous, with her jaunty scarf!

Let’s see how Miss Lamoreaux’s class at Spring Shadows Elementary holds up. This is from 1974-75.

image: Rowland Kodachrome

And finally, Mrs. Harper’s Second Grade Class, Spring Shadows Elementary, 1973-74.

image: Rowland Kodachrome

How fun are those? I wish they still did group photos. Wolfie’s school does a Classroom picture but it’s made up of all the little photos from the kids. Somehow it’s not the same as everyone sittin’ all proper on their little benches.

Lawdy, I wish you could see me right now. It’s late at night and as I peruse all these cool old vintage photos I’m realizing I’m totally clammy from the heat of our house that was baking in the sun all day. This is taking Sweatin’ to the Oldies to a whole new level. Hewwww.

Vacation Flashback: Heading Outta Town.

I know when August hits many families are exhausted from a full summer and can’t wait for school to start. As a workin’ mama, however, I have to say I’m totally not ready! My schedule has been action packed but all with work. Wolfie’s been at a fun summer arts camp and then he and Greg visited grandma and grandpa in Myrtle Beach ….but I haven’t really had a summer vacation to speak of yet. That’s why I’m soooo looking forward to this weekend. We’re all heading down to San Diego for Tiki Oasis—a fun, retro weekender celebrating  tiki culture. I’m plotting outfits, thinking about squeezing in a day trip to Legoland, dreaming of lounging poolside and of course some nice quality time with my sweet boys. Also, August 22 is mah birthday and I’m soo looking forward to hangin’ with my girlfriends who will be down in San Diego with their families too. Expect a full report next week!

In honor of the elusive Family Vacation that I’ve been chasing all summer long, here’s a little virtual slide show of retro holiday fun!

image: bunchofpants

image: striderv

image: panta rhei

image: Harold HAESLER

image: kristina^^

hubba hubba….

image: kristina^^


image: Kristina^^

Hahaha, awwwm what’s up, Playboy University? Check that kiddo out!

image: striderv

image: king power cinema

image: musicmuseCA

image: striderv

image: striderv

image: spajadigit

image: MS2172

image: striderv

Oh for the love of matching lavender (orchid??) purple shorties, I hope you’ve had a smashing summer. Where have YOU gone this summer, dolls? Or are you planning on squeezing in one last great escape before school starts? DO TELL! I love to live vicariously through ya….