Thursday, January 20, 2011


I collect vintage woman’s magazines, particularly, those from the 1930’s – 40’s. They have some darling photographs that recall great fashion eras when women dressed to kill every single day, often on shoestring budgets. I love culling the magazines for images and articles that pertain to working women since I am one, and I often wonder how women managed their lives while working long hours away from home.

A beauty of an article caught my eye in a 1942 Woman’s Home Companion. This one was about good grooming habits while working and I was all over it! The image above was the photo that was used to illustrate this interesting article.

One of the highlights was the recommendation to employ a used candy box in the office. Apparently, every 1942 working woman needed a supply of grooming products for the office which could be charmingly placed within a candybox (for that matter, a cigar box or other shallow box would work as well).

I passed the article along to a few working friends who admitted they had some slap dash and messy cosmetics tucked away in their work desks including crushed eye shadows held together with rubber bands, compacts with broken mirrors, and wrinkled up bandaids.

I purchased a lovely box with dividers that is about the size of a Whitman Sampler. Soon, I filled it with two new lipsticks from the drugstore, some dental floss, a toothbrush and a tube toothpaste, a petite box of bandaids, travel sizes of handcream and hair spray, and a spare set of contact lenses. Later I added a wee sewing kit and some small first aid items. Also, some packets of nail polish remover pads which are immensly convenient when that red polish begins to chip and needs to be removed quickly before a meeting.
The sense of control and organization my little "candybox" has given me cannot be underestimated. It's discreet, organized and always at the ready to make my work day more lovely. Do you have a candybox and what is in it that is essential?