“I’m a redhead and what I wanted for my birthday even more than a new fur coat was a bedroom that would flatter me… Luckily, I had gone first to look at Alexander Smith Carpets and the salesman introduced me to the Alexander Smith Colorama Selector. That’s how I found out that I could wear a pink room… and to think I’d always been afraid of my favorite color!”
This ad, which I found in my copy of the April 1942 issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, introduced me to the fun vintage invention called the “Alexander Smith Colorama Selector”. This was a way that women in the 1940′s could create the perfect room for themselves, based on the color of their hair! From what information I have been able to find on the Selector, I’m guessing it was not much more than a simple color guide letting the decorator know which colors best flattered blondes, brunettes, etc., but the thought that women were actually matching their homes to their hair amused me. I suppose drastic changes in hair dye were just not happening in these homes!
I found a few of the colorama selection guide brochures on ebay, so if you are curious just search that site for “Alexander Smith Colorama Selector” and you should be able to locate some.
As far as the changes made to the newly-colored pink bedroom above, a small picture of the dull old room is also provided in the ad:
“Here’s how drab our bedroom looked before. We pushed our beds together under one headboard, painted the walls, treated the two windows as one, dressed up my dressing table, put down new carpet – and presto, look at it now!”
So for any “Blondes – Brunettes – Brown Hair – Redheads – Silver-Gray”, there was a carpet made to flatter you.