Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mae West: Traveling Dress

In 1948, MAE WEST wore a black dress with a full skirt, draped bodice, and padded shoulders when she sailed back to the USA from her happy trip abroad. She had toured throughout Great Britain with her play "Diamond Lil" from October 1947 into 1948. Upon her return, she joked with the news media at a press conference on the sunny boat dock under the West Side Highway: "Well, they were wonderful there, in London . . . England. But the men were a little reserved . . . and I'm not."
• • The EBAY vendor who sold this well-preserved garment (with a carefully established provenance) reminded buyers that he had "never seen a personal Mae West item sold that had accompanying photos. Most are 'claims' at best. But this dress is the real deal." Mae's traveling dress sold this week [on 16 October 2011] for $920.00. It is en route to its new home. The lucky winner scored quite a treasure.
• • It's true that there are many Mae Items on EBAY that are not authentic. How extraordinary to see that this lovely dress came up for auction seven decades later, and many fans got to see Mae wearing it (even if they could not afford to bid).
• • On 20 October 1933 • •
• • The Wyoming readers of the Natrona County daily newspaper saw a startling image — — on the movies page — — in the 20 October 1933 issue of the Tribune-Herald. Mae West was inviting the public to "come up and see me."
• • Printed on page 4 was the movie star Mae West, cupping her hands under her breasts in a motion picture advertisement for Paramount Pictures. Wyoming! Hubba-hubba!
• • I'm No Angel was released in the USA on 6 October 1993.
• • England on 20 October 1947 • •
• • A British reporter spotted Mae West in 1947 at Euston Station in England.
• • The Guardian's London correspondent wrote: All too briefly yesterday the grey gloom of Euston station was lifted by the presence of a radiant personage with strikingly blonde hair and a dazzling smile. Miss Mae West was on her way to Manchester for the opening to-morrow of her play "Diamond Lil." A quarter of an hour before her train was due to leave, Miss West swayed, the tophatted station-master at her side, along the platform to her compartment. Her arrival was the signal for crowds to desert the train and clamour for autographs. It seemed that the actress must have signed almost a hundred small photographs displaying to advantage her well-known features before she took a rest.
• • Then, in the voice Hollywood has made famous, she invited her audience to "Come around and see me in Manchester." The crowd was enchanted and some porters signified their approval of this invitation with loud whistles. Then came a more official whistle. The train started and Miss West, with the 18 men over 6 ft. tall and the 20 girls appearing with her, was carried northwards. ...
• • Source: Review: "Miss West Comes Up" written by The Guardian's London correspondent; published on 20 October 1947
• • On 20 October 1987 • •
• • To publicize the new motion picture "Too Outrageous," an ad appeared in The Village Voice on this date showing the drag performer Craig Russell totally made up and costumed as Mae West.
• • Gay male impersonations of Mae began to be popular during the 1930s, according to historian George Chauncey.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "He who hesitates is a damn fool."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • An article on a one-man show about Groucho mentioned Mae West.
• • Diane Andrews writes: Music director and on-stage pianist Jim Furmston set the rhythm for Frank Ferrante through every classic wisecrack, anecdote, and song of the 90-minute show. Some of the jokes were suitable for the youngsters in the audience only because they probably didn't get the sly — — and sometimes not so sly — — innuendos.
• • According to Diane Andrews: "It's an aerial view of Mae West," Ferrante says as he has two bald men put their heads together. ...
• • Source: Article: "Actor Frank Ferrante Transports Packed Santa Clara University Theater to Irreverent World of Groucho Marx" written by Diane Andrews for The Santa Clara Weekly; posted on 19 October 2011

 • • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started seven years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2089th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original. 

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google 
• • Photo: • • Mae West • • 1948 dress • •
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Mae West.

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