While reading my March 1947 Vintage Chatelaine, I found an interesting article entitled ‘Charm Check-Up‘ by Adelle White.

1940's charm school tips

Are you making friends and having lots of fun? Your popularity should be unlimited if you can honestly answer “Yes” to these questions. But even if you can’t, be of good cheer; you can always change your type — and no time like now!

I thought for today’s post it would be fun to put ourselves into the shoes of a 1940’s woman and read some of the charm check-ups thru her own eyes. What would your imaginary ‘1940’s gal’ check yes or no to?

**First Category: Your Looks

1940's Woman from 1947 Vintage Chatelaine

Do the small details of grooming seem important?

No matter how ultra-fashionable a costume may be, if hair is untidy, back of shoulders, unbrushed, gloves even slightly soiled or heels run over at the sides, the effect of smartness will be ruined.

1940s vintage fashion

Do you change your hair style every so often?

It’s a treat for your family and your friends to see you with a brand-new hair-do — if only to assure you that they like the old way best. Don’t be afraid to try something new — you’ve nothing to lose and the gain may be exhilarating.

1940's Vintage hairstyles vintage ad

Have you learned to carry yourself gracefully and with poise?

Whether you’re slender or plumpish you can improve you figure 90% by stretching upward with the top of your head….lifting your chest out of your ribs….and pulling in your tummy. It takes inches off your waistline and makes you seem taller.

1940's posture class Miss Cook's School of Manners
Image by Β© Lucien Aigner/CORBIS

 

**Second Category: Your Personality

1940's yearbook photo

Do you talk in a natural and unaffected way?

Just think of the number of girls who spoil an otherwise charming personality by speech affectations, such as kittenish baby talk, or a superimposed accent. It’s a temptation, sometimes, to vary, your type by imitating the dulcet tones of a movie siren — but don’t do it. You’re you — a pretty important person, with no need to borrow tricks from someone else.

singing in the rain movie image

Do you like other women?

You and I have both heard girls say, quite proudly, that they get on better with men than with women. Just imagine some man tossing off a remark that he liked women but couldn’t hit it off with other men! What a raised-eyebrow situation that would be! Haven’t you found that a woman who studiously avoids her own sex is putting on an act which won’t go over with other females?

vintage archie comic
Source: coverbrowser

Are you as casual and friendly with men as you are with other girls?

If you act naturally and are not self-conscious when men are part of the group, you’ll enlarge your circle of masculine admirers much more than if you put on a special act for their benefit. Like everyone else, a man wants to feel relaxed and comfortable when he’s talking to you.

1940s vintage image of man and woman talking life magazine

Are your compliments always sincere?

People who toss flattery about like confetti soon find their compliments lose value. If you don’t admire another woman’s hat or dress it’s best to say nothing — or praise something else about her. Honest compliments, the kind which can be trusted, make friendship jell more firmly.

1940s katie keene comic book cover
Source: Comics Beat

 

**Third Category: Your Party Style

Do you start off for a party with the full expectation of enjoying yourself?

High spirits are contagious. If you arrive looking as though it were a special treat, you’ll not only be a joy to your hostess, but you’ll infect the other guests with the same spirit of gaiety. It just takes one or two guests with a zest for fun to give the whole party a lift.

1940s toga party vintage image
Source: Etiquipedia

Can you forget to worry about how you look?

If you know your dress is becoming; if you’ve spent plenty of time on hair and make-up; if you nails are freshly manicured and your hands do you proud, there will be no need for nervous peeks in mirrors or constant fussing with comb, lipstick and powder puff.

1947 Vintage women's fashion vintage illustration

Have you social assets?

You may not be a pianist or a fine singer — but if you’re good at dancing, card games, ping pong, table tennis, or some other indoor sport, you’ll be a sought-after guest. One of the quickest way to enlarge your circle of friends is to become an expert in some field — such as bridge, rummy, chess, or a sport such as skating or skiing; badminton or squash; tennis or golf. Special sport fans tend to band together. But when you’re with other groups, go easy on your specialty.

1940's party vintage image
Credit MOHAI, Al Smith Collection, 2014.49

Can you forget your own shyness by concentrating on other people?

If you’re the shy type who takes a bit of time to shed reserve and get into a party mood, you can speed the process by picking out another guest sitting alone in corner, and coaxing him or her out of the same shell. Time yourself mentally at just how smart you are, in drawing people out and making them feel comfortably integrated. You’ll please your hostess, probably make a friend for life, and that social diffidence you suffered from at the start will melt like snow in the sun.

1940s bobby soxers teenagers vintage image
Source: Corbis Images

 

Question Time: Do you think that any of these “Charm Check-Up” ideas are applicable in today’s society? Or better left in 1947? Let me know in the comments below.

Liz

10 comments on “Chatelaine Magazine-March 1947: Charm Check-Up”

  1. My, how I love early Archie comics. That’s how my mom would bribe me to go to church, by buying new Archies afterward LOL. Great pics as usual. Please talk to my mother-in-law about changing her hairstyle. It’s been the same short perm since the 80s and it’s driving me nuts. “It’s a treat for your family and your friends to see you with a brand-new hair-do.” !!!! That is one of my biggest peeves when people won’t change it up. In a decade of marriage, I’ve had brown, blonde, and auburn hair, short and long, curly and straight. A gal can’t stare at the same old reflection each day or she’ll just die, absolutely die.

    • I am a huge fan of Archies as well, the early ones are my favorite now but I grew up on the one’s from the 80’s first.

      Give me your mother-in-law’s phone number and I will tell her it’s Chatelaine charm school requesting a moment of her time lol!

      I have changed my hair colour many times as well, and I think that change is good. Whether it’s bangs, shorter length or even extensions, one should have fun with mixing it up in their life πŸ™‚

  2. Oh goodness. Katy Keene comics (she was still around in the early sixties). And Millie the Model. All those dresses. You could design your own and send them in, and if they used them you got credit.

    • I would of loved to have owned one of the dresses that Katy Keene or Millie the Model wore, so dreamy.

      Now that is cool that you could of designed your own for the comic, I would of done that in a second!

  3. There’s still some solid advice in there among some outdated notions. I think focusing on others when you are shy is good advice, sincere compliments are always good, and being relaxed, happy and natural are great things too! But I will make a point of explaining to my husband that any new hairstyle is a treat for him, not me.

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