Saturday, May 16, 2009

Bridal coloring books

#19 in an occasional series of repressed 70's memories that turn out to be true.

Today's power parents may be surprised to learn that coloring books were not always ads for Summer blockbusters. Coming of age post-Shortcake, as they have, they may not know that coloring books were meant for advertising other items besides toys and license franchises.
Like our American way of life.

Bridal coloring books had very simple plots: Kathy was getting married. Not Barbie. Not PJ. Just....some stunning campus beauty from your town who had found her true love and was going to marry him.

After the picture of Brad on one knee, was the close-up picture of Kathy holding the ring up to her flawless cheekbones. The ring was absolutely no fun to color, because of course, it should be clear. You could use white, but it looked milky, which any American girl knows is just no good in diamonds.

Brad wore a sweater, of the collegiate/tennis variety. Always color the boy FLESH and the girl PEACH. These colors are now melded as TAN.
The couple tell the parents. In the long-shot of the 4 in the living room (Mother clasping hands to cheek, Father shaking Brad's hand or clutching shoulder. Kathy, of course, is showing the ring) Sis is in the foreground, peeking through the door, or over a banister. This is you, of course, with better ponytails than yours ever work out.

Brad has a little brother. This will become important later, then implied more important even later. Stay with the story.

The middle part is the best-est because there are so many CLOTHES to color, and since bridal gowns are WHITE, which is a ludicrous topic for a coloring book, you color the bridesmaids, the mothers of bride and groom, the brunch outfits, the trousseau (which you have no idea what it is, but if you are raised Southern as I was, you know they require a hope chest to live in), and ---wait for it... -- the flower girl outfits.

Sis is the Flower Girl of course, and Brad's little brother Buddy or Butch or some other dog's name is Ring Bearer. Families who have mixed offspring would not have the poor taste to appear here.

The Bride and her court have a SLEEPOVER (how old are they?) which is what the court did apparently before the bachelorette caught on with such a death-grip. (side bar to the 9 brides I served. thank you for not putting us through that.) Here are pajamas, fuzzy slippers, at least one set of pink curlers and a face mask.

There is at least one picture of the generic-vicar, another waste of a good coloring page, but Kathy might have on a smart twin-set that is good for a festival of periwinkle.

Finally the wedding section, and there are flowers here, which are entertaining, and the cutting of the cake, which you make chocolate if you have an ounce of creativity. Sis and Buddy are made to dance with each other. (without benefit of cotillion) The couple runs in a platoon crouch to the waiting car under a flurry of rice. Also white.

More proof that your toys do not define the girl you turn out to be. I had two of these handbooks. I also had this one. That's a tepee. And though you can not see it well in this image.... a first aid kit. Well naturally.

One thing you can see is that I am not using a WHITE crayon.


  1. And what a great picture!! M

  2. So many crayons. So many choices. I guess first you play Mystery Date - and later in the afternoon you color in the Bridal Book.



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