What on earth was going on in the 50s??

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What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by missF »

This watch wasn’t what started my fascination with the 50s, but it certainly revived it.. that and my exploration of -matic watches.
0369D5AD-3D85-4C41-9E5D-F0FDD8FA5086.jpeg


In watch terms I LOVE the mid century style. Minimalis, classic. I’m endlessly searching for my endpoint white dial watch on a leather strap, and I think now that I’d have found it in the 50s a long time ago if it wasn’t for the fact that mostly the watches are a bit small to be a real successful daily wearer for me.

But it’s not just the watches - it’s the whole decade! I’m fascinated, and I don’t know why. As far as I remember I didn’t experience the fifties... Perhhaps it’s because of the advertising and imagery that shines through to us today. The optimism (?), the look towards space and a better future? I’m not so sure...
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After a world war that destroyed any notion of humans as a benign species, that also liberated women in the workplace, the 50s seemed to get a bit jangly, discordant, and, well, I just wonder if it wasn’t a decade of denial?? There was lots of Valium being taken but everything in the advertising we see is so damn shiny!

Women returned to the kitchen and were delighted by their new kitchen appliances:
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Men were delighted by the prospect of space travel (when they weren’t following world affairs by reading the newspaper). Though it seems they planned to take their wives with them - presumably to open the beers :lol:

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This thread doesn’t have any purpose or aim - I’m not well and the only solution is really a lot of bed rest. So if this triggers a conversation we’re good to go.

By the way - as a complete aside - was Mad Men about advertisers in the 50s? Maybe I should watch it...

Give me your thoughts, or pics especially of 1950s ‘stuff’ - I remember my grandma’s stainless steel and pale green Formica kitchen... Or suggest me some modern 50s throwback watches, like the Longines. With the mark xvi on my wrist pretty permanently, if I find that white dial watch it might be the end of the search for me :D
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by missF »

F2491B16-00BA-448D-9DBF-FB030BBDC9BB.jpeg
This was 1956. They (the tobacco companies) absolutely knew the dangers by then....
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by Bahnstormer_vRS »

@missF

There's one thing for certain, Lindsey, the Ad Agencies had a view of life in the 1950s that is so very different, almost unrecognisable, to the one they have today.

As for Mad Men? That is actually set, based on true life, starting in the early sixties but I think you'll find a lot of what is familiar from the 1950s still exists.

It is, by the way, an excellent Emmy and Golden Globe Awards winning series. I've seen a few episodes and I think you'll like it.

Guy

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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by Noush »

We are talking about a time after The War. A time of renewed hope, optimism, new possibilities. Looking more forward than back and it's reflected in the kind of consumerism that's shown in those ads and pics.

So the jet-engined long range aeroplane, 'aqualung', and eventually the exploration of space. Also a more 'formal' time where people knew what manners were, that transitioned through jazz to Rock 'n Roll. I was born too late in the decade to remember any of it, but surely the decade that followed.

It is indeed a fascinating time, so culturally different to today we can barely recognise ourselves. So I absolutely get the sense of wonder about it.
And yeah, the Silver Arrow is a gorgeous piece.
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by tikkathree »

I put this comment first: I write from my own perspective and I'd love to hear how things were in post war Germany.

In many ways @Noush summarises it all very nicely. Growing up through the 50's in the northwest of England was a time of striking contrasts: Britain was largely bankrupted by the war (not that us kids knew about that when we were exploring bombed out housing areas) so times were tough.

Back then I think the realisation was that we needed the economy to be massively kickstarted to help us climb out of debt so all the up-beat advertising of "commodities you need" was about getting people to stop looking down and start looking up. That was engrained in me and I've never stopped.
Life simply had to be about recovery and even as a kid, I was aware that people had their shoulders to the wheel and we had to get on; we had to work hard and long.

Not every woman across the western world had been rosie the rivetter but whether your mum/aunties/grandmas/sisters had spent the war years working at "the fuse" (the local generic name for any Royal Ordnance Factory) or in the mill or whether she'd been the fulltime home maker was to an extent a side issue probably nothing more than an indicator of social class.

Was it a great time to be a kid? Looking back I'd say that it was with plenty to explore, relatively simple times where you played with what you found.
Was it a great time to be a working adult with a home and family? My guess is that it was hard but rewarding with the prospect of "work hard and better your situation" being within the scope of every man. Looking back at how lifespans were significantly shorter than today with much industrial pollution and poorer health care I think my vote is to stay here.
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by A1soknownas »

Thank you for posting. The themes of the adverts are unimaginable today so bring more amusement now than offence. It is really interesting to see what era some peoples parents were part of or those in their 70/80s now.

I am mostly drawn to consider and appreciate the logos in the advertising and really like the Schlitz and Kelvinator fonts. We often see a very minimalist and sterlie approach to brand fonts these days.

I think Spinnaker watches had a font similar to the Kelvinator one but was changed to a standard font a year or so ago and in my view losing some of its character.
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by missF »

A1soknownas wrote: Sun May 21, 2023 10:43 am I am mostly drawn to consider and appreciate the logos in the advertising and really like the Schlitz and Kelvinator fonts. We often see a very minimalist and sterlie approach to brand fonts these days.
I totally agree about the fonts- they can put you instantly in an era at a glance. I love the energy and space-age-ness of them.
And - thank you - you made me go back and take another look at the Tissot Visodate range
B499E50C-AA15-4B36-B1BB-410B66F3B0EC.jpeg

Every time I spy a visodate I always go back and take another look, then remember that it’s 42mm, and too big for me. But this time I realised that the quartz version is only 40mm. :shock: Might have to reconsider everything :lol:
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by Thegreyman »

Before my time but oh dear those 50s ads were totally sexist and promoting cigarettes with mother and baby... :ka:

That Longines silver arrows is gorgeous and a great size too @38.5mm for a dressy watch. I think a great contender for an endpoint white dial, leather strap watch is the 39mm (or 36mm) Sealander. For that reason, I've kept one to give my son to wear when he starts work.
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by A1soknownas »

missF wrote: Sun May 21, 2023 11:32 am Every time I spy a visodate I always go back and take another look, then remember that it’s 42mm, and too big for me. But this time I realised that the quartz version is only 40mm. :shock: Might have to reconsider everything :lol:
I feel the same about the heritage Tissot logo, it looks great.

I actually think the 40mm dial looks better balanced without the day complication and the use of 3,6,9,12 compared to the 42mm auto.

If only they did the current 40mm in an auto version - but it always seems to happen with watches that a combo doesn't exist! A bit like the the CW 12 titanium only having the bright colours and not the subtle basalt grey.
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by missF »

A1soknownas wrote: Sun May 21, 2023 2:18 pm
I actually think the 40mm dial looks better balanced without the day complication and the use of 3,6,9,12 compared to the 42mm auto.
I agree. And might have possibly just ordered one ?..... :oops:
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Re: What on earth was going on in the 50s??

Post by A1soknownas »

Ha, I admire the decisiveness. Looks great value and unbeatable really for what you get.
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