Imagine that you need to advertise a fine product, but one not known for excitement. Your ad needs to be eye-catching, beautiful, and hint at luxury — and it has to appeal to women. P.S. Sex appeal won’t hurt.
The gorgeous illustrations are by E. Trumbull:
Once Rudolph Valentino tangoed his way into the hearts of women in Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921) — followed with Blood and Sand (1922), A Sainted Devil (1924) and perhaps before that, “Spanish” shawls — many probably imported from China– were a Twenties’ craze.
Click here for another vintage Illustration of a lady in a shawl wearing a Spanish comb in her hair.
This shawl is vintage, and had a crisp rather than silky feel to it:
So many of these shawls were used as decor, rather than clothing, that I’ve heard them called “piano shawls.”
Click for an exotic comb and shawl combination from a 1926 film of Carmen. Pola Negri‘s 1923 film The Spanish Dancer may have contributed to the fashion for spit curls. (My mother had one right in the center of her forehead in the 1920’s.)
Butterick offered its version of a “costume for a Spanish dancer” in 1924 and again (twice) in 1925.
It showed up again in February (for masquerade parties?) and in October of 1925.
Have you guessed what those glamorous paintings by Trumbull were advertising?