The reason I called this Blog post thus so, is because I was born in 1960, so was busy growing up, learning to read and write, watching` Watch with Mother` and the Moon landing, and choosing clothes from the Ladybird catalogue, so no time to `swing` except on a rather bumpy splinter-ridden seat of the swing in the playground.
They say if you remember the `60s you weren`t there…well I most definitely was, along with Blue Peter, milk that froze on the doorstep, the Milky Bar Kid and Topsy and Tim.
So where is this leading you may ask… Well, I absolutely love PINTEREST, a place online where you can store ideas and images that you love, be it for work-many Interior Decorators use it to show clients `storyboards`, or just for pleasure. You can keep them to yourself or `share` your ideas with other `pinners`. Now many of my `boards` feature cool, arty type photographs, with headings such as `My Style`, `Coastal Home`, `Favourite Spaces` and so on. All inspiring and exciting and a good place to find new `stuff`, be it clothes, earrings, places to visit et al. But the other day I started a whole new Pinterest board. One full of memories. A friend , a similar age and newish to Pinterest, started `pinning` photographs of her childhood memories of things from the 1960s, and so it began that we both have gone a little bit mad with it, but hey what fun it is. I have to say I love looking at my `boards` as bar this one titled ` Memories of 1960s and 1970s`, they all look stylish and inspirational. This one looks bit of a mish mash, but it`s very personal and anyone who was born in the same decade as me will be oohing and aaahing like we are. It is all great fun and we have been texting each other re various images we have found online to share with each other. Who remembers those ghastly, but innovative at the time, walk-about hairdryers that had a sort of plastic bath hat affair in which hot air was blown in via heated dryer type funnel thing. I had one and carried it around in 1971 listening to my hero of the time , David Cassidy singing to me(only me of course), and we found pictures of things like Bunsen burners-every school Biology lab had one–a good trick was to fix the rubber tubing to the taps and switch on! What struck me most looking at pictures of old toys and games was that there were toys and games, something that sadly so many children miss out on now in this age of computers. I realised when I saw books like Milly Molly Mandy and the Enid Blyton series of stories like The Elves and the Shoemaker, that I had bought them all again when my son was small, wanting to recreate a few of my childhood memories for him too. Above are just a few of the images I have saved and what they mean to me.
So, the Test card, this seemed to be on the television screen rather a lot, possibly due to the fact that in the 1960s there wasn`t actually a lot on TV.We really only watched BBC of course anyway.
One of my favourite programmes apart from Blue Peter, was Bewitched, which was in black and white and I was allowed to watch (circa 1969 ) after tea and before Brownies.
A 1960s Christmas Cake complete with rather naff festive figures( which came out each year) still with a greying lump of Royal icing attached. I have to admit I trawled Ebay and have bought similiar ones and replicate this now retro look each year.
Two of my favourite books were Topsy and Tim and Milly Molly Mandy, and I still have the full set which I subjected my son too. There was a Topsy and Tim book for each day of the week, and I also loved Milly Molly Mandy`s adventures with Billy Blunt; cooking baked potatoes on the fire and other , to me, rather brave things like sleeping outside…
Sweet cigarettes-horror of horrors to one who hate hat hates smoking. I though I was the epitomy of sophistication sporting one of these. I also had paper ones that if you blew into them you puffed out a talcum powder type waft of something resembling smoke. The sweet cigarettes were only any good if they had a red tip, the plain ones being far less authentic.
Tressy-the doll everyone wanted. She had a rather odd button in the middle of her tummy which you pressed and if you pulled her hair at the same time , it grew, well a long `tress` really, so you could style away and pile it on top of her head. I chewed my doll`s hands to buggery and then the day came when we were allowed to take our dolls to school and I was so embarrassed about her hands, that I fibbed and told everyone that my younger sister had done it.
Green Shield stamp books, collected by every mother in the land, you got them at the till of the supermarket and at garages when you bought petrol I think. My mother kept them in a drawer until she had sheets and sheets of them, then I was allowed to stick them in using a sponge. We then spent hours looking in the Green Shield stamp catalogue to see what we `qualified` to get.Exciting things like oven gloves…
Gonks, like Trolls, were widely collected and kept on the bed. Scary really.
Rolling down the hill. This was only possible if you lived near a hill,which we did living in Buckinghamshire. Great fun, you got covered in grass stains.I don`t think children ever do today.
Ah Pretty Peach by Avon. The Avon lady never visited us but I had a set of this for Christmas in about 1967 and absolutely adored it. So grown up,I can still smell it.I particularly loved the `soap on a rope` a new thing then.Too good to use.
A leather bound pencil case. I think I used to get these for Christmas, a veritable array of goodies including a compass, which my Mother always took out as it was deemed too dangerous for a delicate flower such as me.
A ballerina jewellery box, this had a key which you wound up;being careful not to overwind, and the dancer pirouetted for you. My cousin-whom I hated as she seemed to have everything I ever wanted ( including birthday parties with a clown, and holidays on cruise ships) had one of these. Another reason to hate her.
Bunty was one of the comics I had as a child, and I loved the cut-out clothes so you could dress the cut-out doll.There was also a story in it called the `Four Marys` who were at boarding school and rather butch, and I was convinced that they were men!
The Fishing game I am sure is one that most people had as a child. I bought one for my son who loved it. Each time I opened the box, however careful I had been putting the magnetic rods away, they were seriously tangled, so much so I would go to my parents house with it and get my, much more patient than me, mother to sort it out for him.
As a child I used to go and stay with my glamorous granny in Yorkshire and to emulate her, I would persuade her to buy me makeup sets and these rather awful looking `high` heels which had an elastic strap across that pinged and broke after about an hours wear. But I used to teeter around her sitting room with lipstick on, two balls of my grandfathers yellow(?) typing paper shoved up my jumper and these gorgeous heels.
Animal Bars were the only chocolate my little sister was allowed to have. I guess it was a small bar, and also we collected the rather jolly wrappers.
We all played the recorder at school. Good old `London`s Burning, London`s burning`.Terrible noise. Luckily I don`t think my son progessed higher than playing the triangle.
Spain. We first went to Spain in 1968 I think ,and it brought new riches, like these lovely Spanish Dancer postcards, Spanish dolls and Bull fighting posters on which you could have your name printed.
When I was eleven I discovered Jackie magazine. Oh wow. Full of gorgeous men like David Cassidy and Donny Osmond, high fashion purple suede tasselled belts, and Cathy and Claire, this was who you wrote to with a `problem` and of course the most read page. Being at an all girls school a copy of Jackie was most coveted, and we would huddle around it at break giggling aloud.
My first hamburger( called beef burgers in those days) was in 1970 in the Wimpy Bar in Bury St Edmunds after going to the dentist. I remember my mother struggling to drink a cup of coffee and have a cigarette with a frozen mouth.
And finally the Galloping Gourmet` the first of all the many many TV Chefs, and where food `porn` all began. He would cook, groan with pleasure and slurp red wine, then lay a table complete with candles and flowers, and grab a woman from the audience to join him to try his cooking. More groans of delight. I think it`s know as a `food-gasm` nowadays. He left TV at the height of his fame to become a Morman…
Ah simple pleasures.
See my Pinterest boards online here: http://www.pinterest.com/sjruffhead/