Would you love to make exquisite cheval mats in crochet? There’s a mag for that.
Do you know how to plan a picnic with luncheon meat and pressed tongue? There’s a mag for that too.
Or maybe you need a potion to help you when you’re ‘off colour’ or a little bit grumpy at ‘certain times’? Don’t worry. You can rely on a mag for that.
The mags in question are my small batch of Woman and Home magazines from the mid-50s and early 60s.
Going by their contents, the magazines should be retitled Woman, Stay at Home.
The magazines depict an alternative universe.
On the face it, they paint a world that’s full of post-war enthusiasm for all things new and bright. It’s a world full of ridiculous dreams and expectations.
In reality, they’re an instruction manual on how a woman can make the family home absolutely wonderful and ‘gay’.
That’s as long as she stays at home and makes sure that everything is fine and dandy for the husband and kids.
It’s stereotyping at its best.
This subservience is reflected in the advertising. I’ve selected a few ads here.
Read, and cringe.
Old sexist ads that are so cringeworthy, they’re funny.
A charming birthday card for a plumber’s wife.
Judging by his living room, George is a very posh plumber. He had his lads bring the sink round before the missus finished her shift at the local chippy.
As she loves her sink so much, George did the decent thing and superglued it to her head.
Hilarious get well soon card.
She could take a couple of Fuck-You tablets and be done with him. He may be a slide-rule wizard in the accounts department but he’s probably the biggest wet blanket of them all.
Witty birthday card for a drunk husband.
Not wholly sexist but there’s something mildly uneasy about all the expectations heaped upon a housewife. What are the rules and criteria for this competition, I wonder?
Here’s Housewife Of The Year propping up her husband after he’s been on the razzle with the boys after work. Stinking of cheese and onion crisps and six pints of Watney’s Red Barrel, he won’t remember a thing in the morning. And it’s only Monday.
Funny birthday card for mummy’s boy.
This man is clearly a mummy’s boy as he’s incapable of looking after himself. He can’t even stir a small bowl of porridge by himself. It’s a surprise he can wipe his arse.
Stylish birthday card for a stylish idiot.
No dear. Do it for your own sake. Look the way you want to look. For all you know, he may want to look like a hooker working the streets of King’s Cross. Some men are a bit weird like that.
A funny builder’s birthday card.
See that spade? Give him a good whack on the back of his head with it. The patio needs doing anyway.
Well, what can I say? If you have any you'd like to share, please do. It'll be a hoot.