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Location July 1947:

Mam'selle Bags Inc.
30 East 33rd Street
New York

Fall bag from Mam'sell was available in calf, broadcloth and suede. (July 1947 Handbags Illustrated, page 7)

Also illustrated in the July 1947 issue, this suede Mam'selle bag with Swagger handle was priced to wholesale at $72 a dozen in suede or crushed goat.

"A rhapsody in suede with a staccato touch of gleaming gold. Note the interesting pattern formed by the inset flap treatment. Smartly designed by Mam'selle."

The "What's New in Handbags" column of "Handbag Buyer" June 1949, included news about Mam' selle's Fall 1949 line. These styles retailed for $3. (page 81)

"Welcome fall innovation is use of silver plated frame tastefully combined with subtle gray suede in classic box design. Silver repeated in pocket binding. Made in calf too. All colors. "

Silver Frames Make Fall Debut

"A refreshing and welcome change is the re-appearance of silver plated frames. After so many seasons of gold frames and gold ornamentation, silver is destined to make a successful debut in the fall. Smart gray suede as well as black are particularly good when teamed with silver. Seasonal broadcloth and smooth Hubschman calf in rich fall shades also take on a new look when combined with silver. Silver binding on pockets take their cue from the polished frames.
To cater to those who wish no metal glints, this firm has complied by making many of its bags on covered frame construction. Especially good looking from this group is a modified satchel. It is neat and smart with its completely covered frame and luggage type of handle that swings up on a metal ring when carried, and falls flat against bag when not in use. Broadcloth is particularly adaptable to this style."

The 1950s

Suits and accessories "set the pace" in an article in the February 1950 issue of "Handbags and Fashion Accessories," pages 40-41


New suits with their 1950 feminine details have definite accessory counterparts . . . Suits shown here are typical. Note their fashion points . . . play up their coordinates Chart these details for your staff and your customers.

DETACHABLE shoulder strap is interpreted by Mam'selle in a calf envelope bag with snap tab slip-lock closure. Cherry cluster is from Aster. Smart checked acetate umbrella by Haas-Jordan has a ten rib frame and long black handle. Petal-like folds form soft wrist frame for Superb's glace' slipons

"Casual Accessories for the Easter Parade" were highlighted in the February 1950 issue of "Handbags and Fashion Accessories," pages 42-43

"POUCHY adjustable shoulder strap bag of calf opens to a big triangle with Fa-cile frame, and has half-moon base, by Mam'selle. Jacques Path designed this fabric glove for Shalimar. It has flaring cuff and hand stitched wristlet. King Fashionable belt of cowhide with buckle back and front lacing."

The HANDBAGS column of the same February 1950 issue of "Handbags and Fashion Accessories," page 71

William Green Joins Mam'selle

William Green, former president of the Handbag and Accessory Salesmen's Association, has become midwestern representative for Mam'selle Bags. He will continue to represent Vassar Import Bag Co. VassarImports, and Paragon Leather Goods ParagonBagCo.

July 1954 Handbags & Accessories, page 31

The October 1955 "Handbags & Accessories" features an extensive collection of bags for The Holidays and these words of guidance for buyers looking for enticing possibilities.

Show novelties and classics for Christmas

MATERIALS: look for fur, the real thing and imitations thereof processed cowhide elegant calf, rich suede
DETAILS: note whangee touches, medallions tabs end buckles double entry openings
SHAPES: include severe through softened silhouettes continue the slim look

"GOLD BAR tops two faced vagabond with turn lock close on one side, snap close on other. Flaps open into common center. Suede bag comas in two sizes. Mam-selle"

"Handbags & Accessories" October 1955, page 17

Accessory market round-up

"Mam-selle offers a group of fine calf handbags using mostly Hubschman and Ohio leathers. The group retails from $10.95 through $18.95 and many styles are available in suede as well as in calf. Diverse shapes appear; many are touched with unusually distinctive detailing. A modified envelope is trimmed in a narrow bead effect and has trench gussets"

"Handbags & Accessories" October 1955, page 36

Bags for Spring 1956 were presented on January 3, 1956 by agreement as a member of the National Authority for the Ladies Handbag Industry. 1956NationalAuthorityMembers

In October 2005, I was delighted to find a web site by Walter Grutchfield 14TH TO 42ND STREET that documents painted signs on building exteriors from 14th to 42nd street in New York City. Since the handbags industry was grounded here in early to mid-20th Century, I hoped the site would provided a glimpse of the real places and Walter exceeded my wildest hopes!

This document of Industrial Americana can be found on the side of 30 E. 33rd St., the Crystal Building near Madison Ave. This picture was taken by Walter in 2002.

Categories: Makers

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