I have always been a huge fan of Elsa Schiaparelli (1890-1973), the outrageous Italian fashion designer who designed fabulously whimsical surrealist fashions from the 1920s until the 1950s. She was also famous for her vivid signature shade of shocking pink, and her perfumes, most notably, Shocking de Schiaparelli.
So I was absolutely delighted when I came across this wonderful ad while thumbing through the April 1945 issue of McCall’s magazine! It is for Cutex Nail Polish and features a shade created by Miss Schiaparelli called “Honor Bright”. It is a blue-red fire shade, almost plum or fuchsia. “Schiaparelli captures the pulsing excitement of this lovely Cutex shade with a fabulous-skirted, proudly beautiful evening coat.” There are five other shades of nail polish: Alert, Young Red, Off Duty, Black Red, and Saddle Brown, that she sponsored to “electrify the fashions in her latest Paris collection!”
Since I have always been partial to this shade for nail polish and lipstick, I can testify that it is a hard one to find! Cutex admonishes us in the ad to “Try and find a lovelier polish at any price“. Sigh…if only I could find this polish; it would be glorious to wear this shade. For now though, I will have to gaze at this magnificent piece of advertising, and dream dreams of wearing the wonderful shade of polish, and the magical Schiaparelli gown.
“In difficult times fashion is always outrageous.” ~ Elsa Schiaparelli