A good friend from college sent me a surprise Christmas gift this year — a vintage 1958 Better Homes and Gardens magazine that she found at an antique mall.  1958-Better-Homes-and-Gardens-magazine

My friend put sticky notes on all the interesting/funny/weird stuff that might be good fodder for blogging all over the magazine — and let me tell you — reading her notes was half the fun!


While it was interesting to read some of the articles, the ads were definitely my favorite part. I poured over the magazine for a solid hour and a half. I read every ad and studied all the photos carefully. It dawned on me that whoever had originally bought this magazine back in 1958 probably did the exact same thing. I wonder what they might think about me reading their magazine so carefully 55 years later…Vintage-General-Electric-ad

One of my favorite ads was for this General Electric stove with a built in meat thermometer. Genius!

The graphic designer in me loves all the imagery and vintage typography. The retro enthusiast in me loves all of the cool devices and decorating. Just recently, I’ve acquired several more vintage magazines from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s — all of them are patiently waiting for me to peruse their pages. Sifting through a vintage magazine is like taking a step back in time — now if only I could still order that bathroom vanity for $5.34 per week…



  1. I have a stack of vintage mags from the 50’s and 60s, and like you, I pour over every one of them! The colors, furniture, fashion, ads, and the typography are to die for! Those ads are fabulous to frame too….I have several scattered around my walls! 🙂

  2. I recently found two Sunset kitchen books, one from the 60s and one from the 70s. No ads, but tons of great photos–and great ideas. Doing something with our kitchen is on our “down the road” list, but when we get there, we’re definitely going to be drawing upon the ideas in those books. In the meantime, I love getting them out just to look at the great fashion and decor.

    As for the range/cooktop in that ad–I think those are the ones I grew up with (in our 1959 ranch). Only ours were turquoise! 🙂

    • Oh yes, vintage catalogs are a great way to get ideas for retro remodels! I’ve been particularly interested in the bathrooms as of late…

      What a cute range/cooktop that must have been — in turquoise! 🙂

  3. I have all my Country Living magazines from the late 80s through the early 2000s, plus the December issues of almost every other home magazine during that time frame. I wonder if someone in 2045 will enjoy them as much as I enjoyed them then and as much as I enjoy 1950s and 60s magazines now.

  4. I too love mid century home magazines. Ads full of cool gadgets, that slightly musty smell, and the diy spirit that seems to have prevailed in that era. But to have to send away for further info and wait to receive it – we are so lucky to be able to just type in a web address and have so much at our fingertips instantly.

    • They had much more patience back in those days I think…but imagine the excitement when you received what you had sent away for — must have been fun! The musty smell is about the only thing I don’t like about vintage magazines — only because it makes me sneeze! 🙂

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