Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Ginger Gene for The New Year



This circa 1951 creation was released in 2003. Like "The Kiss," this one also makes me think of Jean Harlow, which puts it closer to the 1930's. Either way, J'Adore is gorgeous with her ginger hair and green satin gown. She is ready for New Year's Eve! I decided to "plus" the jewelry (Facets by Marcia) and shoes (Jamieshow) from what Ashton-Drake offered with the original outfit.



From the Story Card:

"Who's double crossing who? Or is it 'whom'? Crosser or crossee, you'll never know whodunnit 'til the end!"

So went the ad campaign for Criss Crossed, Gene Marshall's 1951 mystery thriller.

Gene had already made Tango and Daughter of the Nile that same year—and this foray into an atmospheric "dark old house" melodrama was a welcome change.



The tale of the reunion of thirteen casual former school chums at a gloomy and forbidding beach house had audiences on the edges of their seats. Gasps and nervous laughter filled the theater at every showing (along with appreciative whistles whenever Gene as the glamorous Christina Cross appeared in a new gown).

Shadowy hallways, dark passages, and a chilling chase crossing the craggy coast for the climax confounded moviegoers as to who the killer was—right up until the last few minutes of the film. And many an office watercooler jockey was told off after revealing the surprise ending to coworkers who hadn't seen the movie yet!



Gene loved her role so much in Criss Crossed that she jumped at the chance to spread the word about the film—even appearing in a one-hour radio version that recreated the film…right up to the final revelation! The day after the broadcast, theaters across the country bulged with eager fans dying to know exactly WHODUNNIT!!!


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Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Kiss



After doing a photo shoot with this outfit, I can't believe it took me so long. Released during year one, 1995, "The Kiss" is a Tim Kennedy design listed as circa 1946, but it seems much more appropriate for a 1930's Jean Harlow era (as the story card references). An Integrity Gene with hair expertly restyled by Kathy Johnson is the model. Trent Osborn, sporting his "After Hours" smoking jacket and monogrammed slippers, makes a guest appearance in Gene's photos.



I'll remember the end of this film as long as I live. There was Gene Marshall "slipping into something more comfortable" before sharing a romantic moment with her onscreen husband as the two held each other in their arms, looking out over the twinkling lights of the Manhattan skyline. And then he kissed her, tenderly, yet so passionately…and the credits started to roll as the scene faded to black. It was the end of the movie, but not for me. That perfect kiss went on and on, even as I walked out of the theater in perfect bliss.



The Kiss invites romance with a marabou-trimmed pink satin peignoir lined in shimmering silver lamé. Also included is a matching gown with "diamond" pin, earrings, and high-heeled mules. Circa 1946.



You remember how you used to be thrilled by the languid love scenes played by your favorite stars. And now it's you on the set, waiting to play that scene with a leading man the world's women would die for, could they but see him at a distance. Soon, you'll be in his arms, in front of the cameras! And at the end of the scene…the kiss!



In Hollywood's golden age, there's a love story the public never tires of. After an evening on the town, the couple returns to Gene's penthouse apartment. He puts a record on the phonograph. She slips into something "more comfortable." For Gene at this moment, everything must be perfectly romantic: her dramatic entrance back into the scene from the bedroom, her stunning costume, even the sparkling "diamond" brooch worn provocatively at her bustline.



Gene's pink satin gown and peignoir, lavishly trimmed in dazzling white marabou feathers, are of legendary design, harkening back to the slinkiness of Jean Harlow, and looking forward to the buoyant sexiness of Marilyn Monroe. Gene captures the scene with smoldering looks, the toss of her head, the touch of her hand on his. As the credits roll, Gene receives "the kiss"…and we can only guess what happens next!




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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas, 2013!



Here's wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas/Happy Holiday Season. J'Adore Gene is wearing "A Touch of Hospitality" as she hangs the first ornament on her tree.

With hat and purse completing her Wayne Nilson ensemble, Gene is ready to step out on the town to celebrate the holidays with friends and family.



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Monday, December 23, 2013

Little Blessings



Released in 2001, this circa 1951 maternity outfit was designed by Vince Nowell. If you've ever read Carolyn Cook's fantastic book about Gene, then you'll know that Vince's creation changed a bit once his sketch left the drafting board.

"It was a shock when I saw this as a maternity outfit! It was originally designed to be a companion piece to Meet Me In Paris and was to be a vacation outfit. The scoop-necked sheath dress is sexy and tight fitting — collectors can take the coat off if they don't want Gene to look pregnant! The top was not originally that boxy — it was to be a dusty pink which a soft drape - the French trapeze that Saint Laurent made popular."

Vince is definitely right; the polka dot sheath that he designed is va-va-voom on White Orchid!





Here's the story that goes along with the outfit that was released:

The film Little Blessings told of a young couple separated by the Korean conflict. Following them from their first chance meeting through their emotion-charged reunion, crowds responded with tears and cheers to a story that hit as close to home as yesterday's headlines.

Gene shone in a part that seemed perfectly tailored to her talents. Breathlessly innocent and beautiful in her opening scenes, she captured the audience's hearts right at the start. Then she captured their funny bones as the young bride shares an off-base home with another army wife when their husbands are stationed in the South. Gene's sense of comedy was at an all-time high during her battle with a pot of grits.



But the key moment comes as Gene reads a loving letter from her husband, who has been sent to the front. She folds the letter and gives it a little kiss. Just then, a knock. In a tight close-up, a look of concern comes over Gene's face. Still in close-up, she goes to the door and opens it. Standing there is an officer, hat in hand. "Ma'am," he says, "I'm afraid I have bad news. Your husband has been reported missing." Gene gasps—and the audience gasps even louder as the camera pulls back to reveal her impending motherhood for the first time...

But all ends happily, and the family is reunited just in time for the new father to witness his little one's first steps—just one more of the "little blessings" that true love can bring!


Cinched in with a belt, the outfit becomes completely different. Which do you prefer?



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Monday, December 16, 2013

"Too much of a good thing...



can be wonderful." - Mae West

I just got an email from George at Jamieshow/Angelic Dreamz last night. Can you believe he had the NERVE to introduce another cool vintage wig cap?!? This time, it's The Betty, inspired by famous retro 1950s pinup Bettie Page. Available in black, brown, lite blonde, and auburn (see photo below).



Pre-order now to receive The Betty in January.

Visit the Jamieshow website to order your favorite wig cap.

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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Jamieshow for Christmas



Not sure what to ask for when it comes to the Holidays? I'd say that Gene collectors need to look no further than Jamieshow for some amazing items that are now available for pre-order. First up is this deco-style wig cap called Scheherazade, available in Black, Platinum, Dark Red, and Brown.



Tired of fussing with gloves...attempting to get them over the fingers and the snagging? What about the ones that are supposed to be gloves but look more like children's gloves? Jamieshow now has you covered with these lovely red, black, and white gloved hands, each appropriately accented with a matching bow.



If you're bored with Gene's old outfits, how about this stunning new firey red ensemble called Scheherzade? Yes, it is meant to coordinate with the new wig cap previously mentioned. Act fast though; it's being released in a limited edition of only 30.



Last but not least, they are also releasing a new dressed doll named Natalie. Violet who?



You can pre-order these items on the Jamieshow website.

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Sunday, November 24, 2013

White Orchid and Peachtree Stroll



Between my recent trips and commissioned photo shoots, my time to take pictures of Gene has been non-existent. I managed to get a few of White Orchid in today. This one shows her cavorting at the Chateau Marmont pool in West Hollywood.

Here's one of J'Adore, also taken at the Chateau.



Hopefully over the Holidays I'll have more time during the break to get some more shoots in. Meanwhile, in Tonner news, photos have been released of their upcoming Scarlett O'Hara release titled "Peachtree Street Stroll."



I'm not sure what I think of the hairstyle; the mess of curls on top doesn't look quite right.







The outfit looks pretty enough and for the most part very accurate. Compared to the Franklin Mint version, it only seems to be missing the purse.

You can pre-order this doll on the Tonner website.

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Wednesday, October 2, 2013

New Marilyn and Scarlett From Tonner



New photos from Tonner's Fall 2013 collection have been released; two definitely appeal to me. The first is a new Marilyn Monroe doll called Shipboard Wedding, based on an outfit that Marilyn wore in the final sequence from the 1953 film "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes."



The new 16" vinyl doll sells for $224.99 on the Tonner site (link above); $99.99 for outfit only and includes applied black eyelashes.



The doll comes with a rhinestone ring & necklace (neither is included in outfit only package) and is being released in a limited edition of 300. It looks like the finger has a hole so that the ring can be pushed into it.





Based on the photos, it looks like Tonner has done a fantastic job of re-creating the outfit worn by Marilyn:



The new Scarlett O'Hara "Gone With The Wind" release is only being shown so far in sketch form, but is titled Peachtree Street Stroll:



The 16" dressed doll will retail for $234.99 (link to Tonner site above) and includes pink and black stripe cotton dress with a black and gold brooch, pink satin skirt, pink crinkle chiffon under sleeves and collar, and black velvet attached belt, white cotton petticoat, black and gold earrings, black straw hat with a pink satin sash, black stretch knit gloves, and pink satin shoes. No mention of a purse, which was included in the Franklin Mint's release. Tonner is putting this one out in a limited edition of 300.

Here's a photo of the Franklin Mint version:



A photo from the movie, showing the sequence that the outfit is based on. Scarlett strolls down Peachtree Street with husband Rhett and daughter Bonnie Blue. They are attempting to woo the "fat old cats" who have been appalled by Scarlett's greedy behavior in the past.



I'm on the fence about Marilyn, but the Scarlett...with each new release Tonner has shown improvements in the face paint and Vivien Leigh likeness...I may have to pick this one up.

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Gene Marshall: Almost a Hitchcock Blonde



Most people know of Alfred Hitchcock's affinity for cool blondes. Tippi Hedren is one of his most famous, having burst onto the scene in "The Birds," Hitch's 1963 classic. The photos from today's post show that Gene Marshall could have given Tippi a run for the money. In photo one, Star Entrance Gene borrows Phoenix's outfit while allowing a crow to pose on her arm.

Photo two finds Gene in Bodega Bay, taking a smoke and beverage break outside of the elementary school used in the film.



Here Gene recreates the famous attic scene. Don't open that door, Gene! Oops...too late...



The last two photos show Gene re-creating two images from Tippi's Look Magazine cover shoot.





The talented Kathy Johnson restyled Star Entrance's hair to make her look just like Tippi and the amazing Diane Wagner created the three-piece green suit that Gene is wearing.

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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Evening Encore: Who wears it better?



Evening Encore is one of my very favorite Gene Marshall outfits, and yet, I have only photographed it once, back in the "early years." Today's post shows J'Adore modeling it (unfortunately, I couldn't get the gloves over her hands) in both her original auburn wig cap and a raven one. Which do you think looks better?



Either way, she's a knockout in this ensemble that looks like something Jacqueline Kennedy would have worn during her White House years.



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Saturday, August 24, 2013

More J'Adore



More from my J'Adore photo shoot. She looks great in black and white AND color.

By rotating the hat and cocking it at an angle, a bit of film noir mystery is added.



Yes, she's standing on her own.



My favorite from the shoot:





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