Wednesday, January 23, 2019

More Picnics & Berets

Picnics with berets weren't limited to Citroën C4's (see yesterday's post), but there are a good number of beret/picnic/Citroën combinations to be found on the web. 
The two Citroën 2CV's for example (above).
But also in Brittain were berets the headgear of choice for some women while out on a motor-picnic.
And these folks here are enjoying themselves while waiting for the cyclists of the Tour de France go by. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Picnics with Berets & Citroëns C4's

Four old photographs of happy people picnicking, all in the good company of berets and 1930's Citroëns C4's. 
The Citroën C4 and C6 models were designed to replace the Citroën Type A 10 hp and Citroën Type B model family cars. 
The traditional grill styles of previous Citroën models were abandoned and a sleeker, flatter grill was used. 
There were numerous options in terms of body styles, including a particularly popular commercial line.

Monday, January 21, 2019


Snoopy is Charlie Brown's pet beagle in the comic strip Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz. 
Since his debut on October 4, 1950, Snoopy has become one of the most recognizable and iconic characters in the comic strip, and is considered more famous than Charlie Brown in other countries than the US. 
The original drawings of Snoopy were inspired by Spike, one of Schulz's childhood dogs.
Snoopy is a loyal, innocent, imaginative and good-natured beagle who is prone to imagining fantasy lives, including being an author, a college student known as "Joe Cool" and a British World War I "flying ace" in the Royal Flying Corps. He is perhaps best known in this last persona, wearing an aviator's helmet and goggles and a scarf while carrying a swagger stick (like a stereotypical British Army officer of World War I and II).
Snoopy can be selfish, gluttonous, and lazy at times, and occasionally mocks his owner, Charlie Brown, but on the whole,  he shows great love, care, and loyalty for his owner (even though he cannot even remember his name and always refers to him as "The Round-Headed Kid"). In the 1990s comic strips, he is obsessed with cookies.
All of his fantasies have a similar formula: Snoopy pretends to be something, usually "world famous", and fails. His short "novels" are never published, and his Sopwith Camel is consistently shot down by his imaginary rival enemy, the German flying ace the "Red Baron". Schulz said of Snoopy's character in a 1997 interview: "He has to retreat into his fanciful world in order to survive. Otherwise, he leads kind of a dull, miserable life. I don't envy dogs the lives they have to live."

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Johan Fabricius

Johan Wigmore Fabricius (1899 –1981) was a Dutch writer, journalist and adventurer.
Fabricius was born in Bandung, Java. He wrote approximately 60 books, among them many books for children, including De Scheepsjongens van Bontekoe (1924), which was reprinted 28 times as of 2003.
When World War II broke out, Fabricius was living in Antwerp with his family, and fled to England by way of Saint-Malo. In London he worked for the Dutch news department of the BBC, first as a news reader and then as a free-lance correspondent. In the spring of 1945 he was sent to Asia as a correspondent for 
The Times and the BBC, hoping to witness the liberation of the Indies. 
In September 1945 he flew from Singapore to Batavia, and was one of the first foreign correspondents there. His recollections of a country ravaged by war and revolution were published in 1947 as Hoe ik Indië terugvond. At the end of 1945 he left, moving to the United Kingdom by way of French Indo-China, Japan, and the United States.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Role Models?

For those who were under the mistaken believe that berets typically are worn by old men, it may come as a shock to learn how two young American bandits influence today's fashion (from their graves).
Bonnie Elizabeth Parker has got many 1000's of women into beret wearing, although it may have as much to do with the myths, US folkore and countless films and TV shows being made after their unfortunate deaths. 

Friday, January 18, 2019

A Concert of Tractors in the Gers

According to the organizers it’s a world premiere, six very old tractors giving a concert.
It is an interesting sextet playing one Sunday afternoon in Fourcès, in the Gers (France). Six tractors interpreted the "Se Canto" for the first concert of a polyphonic ensemble of single-cylinder tractors.
In front of several hundred spectators, with the scenery of a few haystacks and a combine harvester, six farmers with beret, in their sixties, played pistons.
The conductor and his musicians 
At the first piston, was André Riu on a Société Francais hV1; on the cornet, Gérard Vingnoles on a Field Marshall 1 H; on trombone, Christian Lavigne-Casteran on a SVF 401; the bass was provided by Daniel Cassagne on a SVF 302; the bugle was the responsibility of Henri De Biasi on SVF 202 and the percussions devolved to Marcel Lacouture on an SVF 302. Of the six machines, five tractors were manufactured by the French company Société Francais, in Vierzon. As a result, the concert recorded by many spectators is entitled "Concerto for Vierzons”."

Thursday, January 17, 2019

The Golden Frame

De Gouden Lijst (The Golden Frame) is a picture book by Dutch author Rindert Kromhout.
"There were once a man and a woman who had almost everything.
They had a nice house, a big garden, two mischievous children and work they loved a lot. But they did not have a painting yet. That is why they bought a golden frame one day and asked a painter to make a beautiful painting.
'A beautiful, colorful painting that makes us happy.'
But the painter was planning something completely different ..."

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Early Female Aviators: Laura Ingalls

Laura Houghtaling Ingalls (December 14, 1893 – January 10, 1967) was a pilot who won the Harmon Trophy. She was arrested in December 1941 and convicted of failing to register as a paid German agent. She had been receiving approximately $300 a month from Baron Ulrich von Gienanth (Ulrich Freiherr von Gienanth), the head of the Gestapo in the US, and, officially, second secretary of the German Embassy in Washington. During the trial it came out that von Gienanth had encouraged Ingalls's participation in the non-interventionist America First Committee, a significant embarrassment for that organization.
Laura Houghtaling Ingalls was a distant cousin of Little House on the Prairie's Laura Ingalls Wilder, and became a friend of her daughter Rose Wilder Lane.
Her most well-known flights were made in 1934 and earned her a Harmon Trophy. Ingalls flew in a Lockheed Air Express from Mexico to Chile, over the Andes Mountains to Rio de Janeiro, to Cuba and then to Floyd Bennett Field in New York, marking the first flight over the Andes by an American woman, the first solo flight around South America in a landplane, the first flight by a woman from North America to South America, and setting a woman's distance record of 17,000 miles.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Early Female Aviators: Pancho Barnes

Florence "Pancho" Barnes was one of the most important women in 20th Century aviation.
A tough and fearless aviatrix, Pancho was a rival of Amelia Earhart's who made a name for herself as Hollywood's first female stunt pilot. Just before WWII she opened a ranch near Edwards Air Force Base that became a famous -- some would say notorious -- hangout for test pilots and movie stars. 
Known as the "Happy Bottom Riding Club", it became the epicenter of the aviation world during the early jet age. Chuck Yeager celebrated breaking the sound barrier there in 1947, and Howard Hughes and Jimmy Doolittle caroused in the bar. The Club's destruction by fire in 1953 is seen by many to mark the end of a Golden Era in post-WWII aviation. In the same fashion Pancho herself has become something of a legend, a fascinating yet enigmatic icon whose swagger is often celebrated.
Her life and personality were portrayed in the 1983 epic film The Right Stuff adapted from Tom Wolfe's bestselling book of the same name.

Valerie Bertinelli as Pancho Barnes
She was also the subject of a heavily fictionalized 1988 TV film, Pancho Barnes, written by John Michael Hayes, directed by Richard Heffron, and starring Valerie Bertinelli.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Flying Horses

Flying horses with a Continental Airlines Golden Jet air hostess, with beret. 

Sunday, January 13, 2019

This week on SPECIAL: bi-colours from France and Spain!

On Special this week, some very special beret models: the bi-colour wool and Eco berets by Le Béret Français and (a small number) of the beautiful and exclusive Exposición Edición Limitada Paso-doble made by Boinas Elosegui.

All details can be found on the respective pages (here and here); the slashed prices only on this Special-Page.

For this week only up to $21.50 discount (as long as stock lasts).

Laos (#3)

Three Yao children in the village of Houei Lai in Houa Khong Province
Young Akha boy walking on a path between villages in Houa Khong Province
Yao (Mien) villagers meander on village streets. It is interesting to note that the young boy on the left side of the photograph is wearing a blue baseball cap while the man on the right side is wearing a maroon beret.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Laos (#2)

A Yao (Iu Mien) man crouches on a log in his village of Houei Lai in Houa Khong Province
An Akha man wears his beret in the village of Houei Thu, located near the village of Phate in Houa Khong Province. The maroon beret is a Royal Lao Army one.
Men pose with their rifles in the village of Kiu Katiam, flasks of gunpowder around their necks. A wind tower introduced by Father Yves Bertrais of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate is in the background.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Laos (#1)

Laos is a Southeast Asian country traversed by the Mekong River and known for mountainous terrain, French colonial architecture, hill tribe settlements and Buddhist monasteries. 
A Yao (Iu Mien) father walks with his son in the town of Nam Kheung in Houa Khong Province
In the late 19th century, Luang Prabang was ransacked by the Chinese Black Flag Army. France rescued King Oun Kham and added Luang Phrabang to the Protectorate of French Indochina. Shortly after, the Kingdom of Champasak and the territory of Vientiane were added to the protectorate.
Four Blue Hmong (Hmong Njua) boys pose in a Hmong village in the vicinity of Muang Vang Vieng in Vientiane Province wearing traditional black baggy pants. One wears a beret.
Laos never had any importance for France other than as a buffer state between Thailand and the more economically important Annam and Tonkin. By 1940, around 600 French citizens lived in Laos. 
The new cement block school in Muang Meung in Houa Khong Province was officially dedicated on September 14, 1972. The different ethnic groups were represented at the celebrations, including these three Akha boys.
Apart from French colonial architecture, it is the berets that form a strong link between France and present day Laos population. 
Unidentified gentleman, 1964-66