March 8th, 2013

carole lombard 05
  • vp19

Wondrous in wool

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 wool 00a

One of Carole Lombard's earliest creations by Irene of the fabled Bullocks Wilshire, this smart wool outfit was featured in the September 1939 issue of Photoplay to conclude a three-page spread on wool fashion for fall. (Note the magazine lists her upcoming film as "The Kind Men Marry"; by the time this hit newsstands, RKO had changed the title to "In Name Only.") The first two pages starred Glenda Farrell and future Lombard co-star Anne Shirley:

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 wool 01

Lombard is also shown with co-star Cary Grant in a publicity still from the film...but the page designer made it look as if Cary was less interested in Carole than in how curvaceous Ann Sheridan fills out a sweater:

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 carole, cary and ann 00

Lombard may have gotten a chuckle out of an illustration entitled "Going, Going --", where a movie-struck fan ruefully notes that Clark Gable, Tyrone Power and Robert Taylor are now off the market (although James Stewart, Brian Aherne and David Niven are among those still available):

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 going, going 00a

And since "Oz, the Great and Powerful" is hitting theaters this weekend, check out this MGM ad for what remains by far the best-known version of L. Frank Baum's characters, even more so than his series of "Oz" books:

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 wizard of oz ad

Note the ad used spot color, rather than full color; was MGM hedging its bets (there was still some skepticism over the viability of this adaptation), or did Photoplay simply lack the ability to run a full-color, two-page inside spread?

One of the actresses first rumored to play Dorothy Gale was on the cover...but Shirley Temple would have to settle for a version of the children's story "The Blue Bird" the following year, a film that's hardly remembered today:

carole lombard photoplay sept 1939 cover 00a

You can buy this magazine straight up for $24.99, or make a bid of at least $19.99, in which case bids close at 4:24 p.m. (Eastern) on Thursday. This is from Photoplay's oversized days, so the magazine measures 10 1/2" x 13 1/2" and is in good condition. Think you'd like to own it, or simply learn more? Then go to

An update on the 2013 Favorite Classic Movie Actress Tournament, 1930s division: As of 9 a.m. (Eastern), Carole Lombard has a commanding 47-4 lead over Margaret Dumont, while in other "Funny Ladies" quarterfinal matches, Jean Harlow is trouncing Margaret Sullavan, 43-8; Jean Arthur has a 30-21 edge on Una Merkel; and Myrna Loy is comfortably ahead of Thelma Todd, 39-13. In the "Singers/Dancers" quarterfinals, Temple is barely up on Bebe Daniels, 25-23; Eleanor Powell is routing Luise Rainer, 34-10; Ruby Keeler has a slender 26-22 lead over Mae West; and Joan Blondell is far ahead of Jeanette MacDonald, 33-14. If you haven't voted, do so at, which has links to the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s brackets. This round of voting ends Saturday.
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