Category Archives: About Hilda

1958 – My Year

This August, I celebrated my 58th birthday.  My stepson, now a computer science major at college, taught me all about video games, so I now see myself more as Level 58.  It sounds like so much more of an accomplishment… Anyway, I digress.  So I’m 58 and I was born in 1958.  I like this.  Mom was almost 45 in that year. She and Dad had been married for almost 20 years.  He was a painter. She was the breadwinner. But after 20 years, she decided that more than anything, she wanted to have a baby.  And he agreed.  I was one of those fortunate ones who was wanted and loved.  I never felt a day growing up without the security of feeling that I was the center of their world.  I would give anything to have one more day with them both.  But they surround me still with their work.  This blog is about Mom, but Dad’s paintings fill my home as well.

So what happened in 1958. Here’s a page from my baby book.

My Baby Book from 1958

My Baby Book from 1958

Ike was President, although Mom was a huge fan of Adlai Stevenson, his opponent in the 1952 and 1956 elections.  Averill Harriman was Governor of New York and Robert Wagner Mayor of NYC.  The Polio Vaccine had just been introduced.  It helped wipe out the disease in this country.   Satellites were a new thing – remember Sputnik?  Mom loved classical music, so Van Cliburn and Yasha Heifetz were big on here list of the best entertainers, along with Louis Armstrong, Elvis, Marilyn and Marlon. The great minds of the time varied from Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas to existential philosopher Albert Camus to, of course, Picasso.  Doing what she did best, there are sketches of the popular styles of the time, including Trapeze dress and Flower hats! Yikes!!

I love that Mom lives on now and that you all know about her. I decided to celebrate 58 with you by having a sale on Hilda’s site.  All of our 9″x12″ Limited Edition Prints are $58 until the end of August.   And for anyone else who is 58 born in ’58, I’ll put in a  little extra present.  Just let me know.

So here’s to Mom.  She made it to Level 90. Quite an accomplishment.  But it still feels like she’s right here next to me.

 

5 Fab Fashion Illustration Books

Ahh fashion illustrations. Always on my mind. There’s nothing better on a cold winter day than to curl up with a great book, a hot cup of tea and (hopefully) a crackling fire in the fireplace.  If you love fashion drawings, costumes, movies or all of the above, here are 5 books about fashion illustration of all kinds that I highly recommend.

LIZ’S FAVORITE FASHION ILLUSTRATION BOOKS ARE…

HILDA GLASGOW OU L’ESPRIT DE LA MODE

fashion illustration

Obviously #1 on my list.  Just a few years ago,  not in my wildest imagination could I have made the following statement – Here’s a beautiful book all about Mom and her amazing fashion illustrations!  French publisher Larousse has created this extraordinary coffee table book complete with 140 of Hilda’s drawings and a detailed biography written by my very talented cousin, Jennifer Wittes. C’est en francais, but if you can find a copy where you live, it’s a picture book, so the drawings are a language that everyone can read! In France, you can find it in many places including Amazon.  Magnifique!

 

 

MASTERS OF FASHION ILLUSTRATION BY DAVID DOWNTON 

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David Downton, one of the world’s leading fashion illustrator, has created this stunning book which showcases the work and the lives of the 20th century’s most acclaimed fashion artists, including Erté, Boucher, Andy Warhol and concluding with a portfolio of Downton’s work.  More here.

 

 

 

 

100 YEARS OF FASHION ILLUSTRATION BY CALLY BLACKMAN

fashion illustration

 

This book is a comprehensive history of fashion illustration over the last century and how fashion and it’s drawings reflected the larger political and cultural changes in the world. To see some of the 400 images in this wonderful book, go here.

 

 

 

 

AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF FASHION:500 YEARS OF FASHION ILLUSTRATIONS BY ALICE MACKRELL

fashion illustration

To quote the blurb, as it says it all, “A chronological account of the evolution of dress which covers 500 years of fashion, as seen through the art of its period. The illustrations range from early woodcuts through the development of fashion plates and the rise of fashion journalism to the use of film, photography and the Internet.” In other words, how we got to here! For more…

 

 

 

 

HOLLYWOOD SKETCHBOOK:A CENTURY OF COSTUME ILLUSTRATION BY DEBORAH NADOOLMAN LANDIS

fashion illustration

Mom and I were both movie fans.  I have a fond memory of her waking me up at 2 in the morning so we could watch Pride and Prejudice with Laurence Olivier. It was our thing.  So, needless to say, I love this book. Academy Award  nominated costume designer Deborah Nadoolman Landis shows how the drawing “provides a blueprint for the creation of a costume and a character”. Over 400 previously unpublished illustrations are featured with a rare view of the portfolios of Hollywood’s greatest designers. For more…

 

 

 

That’s my list.  One more thought, it would help me to know if any of you are interested in perhaps purchasing Mom’s book.  I am talking with the publisher to be able to sell them through our site and it would be helpful to see if there is an interest.  You can post a response here.  Thanks everyone! And remember only 38 more days until Spring!

A Mother’s Day Memory

I have one vivid memory of a Mother’s Day when I was about 10.  I was starting to experiment with cooking (this phase didn’t last very long) and I had perfected my Egg Foo Young recipe.  I was going to cook this for Mother’s Day breakfast.  I carefully picked out all the ingredients.  I made up a fancy menu which I presented to Mom who was going to get her breakfast in bed feast.  I fried up the onions.  I peeled the shrimp.  The aroma was wafting throughout the apartment.   I had a tray with a flower on it.  I happily presented the delicious meal to Mom.  The only problem was that she had the stomach flu and the smell of it cooking was making her even sicker and the sight of it was even worse.  But she happily accepted my gift and only told me years later that she was ready to run to the bathroom to throw it all up.  Even sick as a dog, she made me feel so special and absolutely loved.

Happy Mother’s Day to you all.  And that includes all of us who do not have children, but instead have chosen the furrier variety!

And as an aside, if  you are going to the National Stationery Show at Javits Center in NYC, please stop by the Hester and Cook Kitchen Papers booth where the Hilda Glasgow line will be on display.  Booth 2844.  See you there!

Where’s Hilda?

Just for fun, I’ve decided to start a little contest series.  Here’s the first one.

I’m so lucky to have been left many things from my family, including many, many photographs.  My grandparents documented their daughters growing up and then my father, who was a wonderful photographer as well as a painter, took over the position.  I always had a camera pointing at me and honestly, I kind of hated it after a while, but then I became a photographer myself which has a touch of irony.  In any case, now I get to share these photos with all of you.  And from the feedback that I get, it seems that you’re enjoying them.

Here’s a classic from about 1926 or so.  I think it might have been Mom’s graduation picture from Hebrew school.  I seem to remember her telling me this.  Mom’s father, Lazar, was an atheist and Cilka was Orthodox. She kept Kosher.  Whatever made her happy, he’d always say.  And I guess this included sending their daughters to Hebrew school.  Anyway, here’s the photo:

Class Picture001-2and here’s the contest:

Which one of these lovely young ladies is Hilda?  The first 5 people who get it right will receive one of our hand mirrors.  Please post on our Facebook page.  Unfortunately because of the cost of overseas shipping, I can only honor responses from the US.  Sorry to all our fans around the world.

Once a month, I will add another contest, so please keep in touch.  And tell all your friends!

A Shared Birthday

Times

Mom was an avid crossword puzzler.  Or possibly fanatic would be a better word. She did the Sunday NY Times puzzle in ink. For those of you not in the NY area, this is the pinnacle of crosswords.  It’s a Sunday thing to sit down with some coffee and a pen (or pencil for those not quite so bold) and spend the day happily toiling over the squares and clues.

Much to my surprise, I found out that Mom and her beloved crossword puzzles had something in common – their birthday was one day apart.  She was born December 22, 1913 in Brooklyn and it was first published in the New York World (in New York as well) December 21 of the same year.  It’s their 100th birthday!  Mom was the 3rd daughter of Lazar and Cilka Richman (originally Reichman) and crossword (originally word-cross, changed because of a type setter’s error) was the baby of Arthur Wynne.  As an aside, Mr. Wynne asked his publisher if he should copyright the game, but was discouraged from doing this as his boss figured it was a passing fad. Let me point out that the New York World no longer exists…

In 1924,  a couple of recent Columbia University grads, Dick Simon and Lincoln Schuster, decided to publish a book of crosswords at the urging of Mr. Simon’s aunt.  And the rest is history.  In that same year, Mom was reading books like Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice.  It’s unknown if she owned the crossword book.

The crossword became so popular, that commuter rail lines had dictionaries in every car. There was a Broadway show called “Puzzles of 1925”. And the roaring 20’s wild style lead to inventive dresses with the puzzle as their fabric.  I think Mom would have loved this dress!il_340x270.419428205_oj53

 

The puzzles live on as do Mom’s beautiful drawings.  I know people are enjoying them both.  Happy 100th Birthday to Mom and Crosswords!

Meet the New Gal

Silka c. 1964

Silka c. 1964

Here’s the newest member of the collection.  Her name is Silka c. 1964.  All of the drawings are named after Mom’s models, friends and family.  Silka was my grandmother. Mom’s mom.  Unlike this willowy drawing, Silka was 4’10” and quite stocky.  But she exuded the confidence seen here.  She was born in 1883 in a town called Little Constantine near Kiev Russia.  When she was 15, she started a business making corsettes.  She and my Grandpa Lazar immigrated to the US in 1904.  She wasn’t happy here and longed to go back.  Lazar agreed and they did, but upon returning after a while, she realized she had made a mistake and in 1907, they returned and settled in Brooklyn.  She was a business woman and had several dress making stores.

Cilka and Lazar. Note that she's standing on books pushed under the carpet.

Cilka and Lazar. Note that she’s standing on books pushed under the carpet.

 

She wanted all four of her daughters to have a career and Mom was the only one who realized that. She was so proud of her.  Like Mom, Silka was way ahead of  her time.  So every time you look at this beautiful drawing,  please think of my Grandma Silka and see a little Jewish lady blazing a trail.

Grandma Silka

Grandma Silka

The Silka Print and Notecard are now available on our site.  

 

 

 

 

Celebrate Hilda’s Big Day

Mom and me baby bw011-Edit

August 4, 1958, Hilda was in Doctor’s Hospital on the Upper East Side of Manhattan giving birth to me, her only child. She was almost 45 years old and had been married 20 years. She decided she wanted a child and had no worries that there would be any problems. Nowadays, this is a much more common occurrence, but 55 years ago, it was almost unheard of. Mom was a ground breaker in many ways.

I can’t believe that I am 55 years old.  In my mind, I’m 25 years younger.  And people say that I don’t look my age, whatever 55 is supposed to look like.  But I do know that the excitement and success of having this new business makes me feel like I shouldn’t be getting the Senior discount at the supermarket.  Thanks Mom, for keeping me young!  You still are taking care of me.

Sandy c. 1957

Sandy c. 1957

Sandy circa 1957 is one of my very favorite drawings.  I just love her outfit!  You all give me  a gift every time I hear how much you love Mom’s work, so for my birthday present to you, from August 3 thru 5, a 9×12 Limited Edition Print of Sandy will be on sale for $37.50.  She’s 50% off!  I want everyone to be able to have her hanging in their boudoir.

Sandy is printed on a heavyweight fine art paper called BFK Rives, mimicking the look and feel of the original.  She is numbered and her name and date are hand written in the corner.  “The White Cabinet” seal is also embossed on the page to ensure that your have the real thing.

Thanks everyone.  I think this is going to be one of the best birthdays ever!

A Little About Bernie

This whole venture is all about my mother and her immense talent, but when I was growing up, the artist that everyone looked up to wasn’t her.  It was my father, Bernard Glasgow.  He was a fine art painter whose work was exhibited at places like the Brooklyn Museum with the likes of Georgia O’Keefe. He was represented by 57th Street galleries in Manhattan.  Mom and Dad met at when they were taking classes at the Art Student’s League.  In those days, anyone who was serious about art went there.  Dad was a class favorite of teachers  Rico Le Brun and Jon Corbino.  He was a talent.

Bernie was born in 1914 in the Bronx.   He couldn’t wait to get to Manhattan and rented a cold water loft there when he was 17 and gradually moved out of his parent’s apartment. He went to NYU and then the League.  His style of work matched the progress of the century.  He started off realistic.

The Picnic circa 1935

The Picnic circa 1935

In 1941, he won a prestigious WPA award to paint a U.S. Post Office mural that still hangs in Salem, West Virginia.  (I have to do a road trip soon.)

PO Mural

He served in North Africa during WWII, but saw no action.  Stationed in Casablanca, he painted murals and camouflage and was honorably discharged as a Staff Sargeant.  After the war, his fascination turned to Cubism.

Purple Nude

Purple Nude

and then Abstract Expressionism.

He pretty much stopped painting by the early 1960’s and became an art director at a Madison Avenue ad agency.  And yes, Mad Men does bring me back.  It’s like a recreation of place I remember visiting as a kid.  He was a curious man, always creating something, whether it was designing a desk or taking photographs.  He loved kids and was a favorite parent to my friends.  He was always taking us to the amusement park, beach or, his favorite, the many NY museums.

Some of his paintings were out in the world and many were in our apartment.  When he was about 70, he got a call from a gallery who was trying to find Bernie Glasgow. They had just bought one of his paintings at an auction.  Coincidentally, the gallery was a block away from where we lived.  I walked over with him and there was a large, bright realistic painting he had done of a party in Rockport, Massachusetts in the 1930’s.  He had been Jon Corbino’s teaching assistant there.  I remember him looking over the painting and I could see him traveling back to those years.  Then he asked how much it was selling for.  The dealer said $7500.  They had a nice talk and when we walked home he stopped and said “When she said $7500 I almost had a heart attack”.  He couldn’t believe his work could sell for that amount of money.  The painting did sell a few months later, but unfortunately, Dad had passed away by the time I found out.

Over the years, Mom and I found renewed interest in his work and it’s now represented at the Papillon Gallery in Los Angeles.  Dad was a doting father. He would have been thrilled to know that he was able to take care of me and Mom long after his death with the sale of his paintings.

He was the real deal.

Bernie Glasgow (1914-1986)

Bernie Glasgow (1914-1986)

Everyday is Mother’s Day for Me

Mom and Me circa 1992

Mom married Bernie Glasgow in 1938.  She was 25.  Dad was a painter and it was decided that they weren’t going to have kids.  She was fine with this. They had a great life together, enjoying work,  travel, friends and family.  But after almost 20 years, she decided she had changed her mind and I guess Dad agreed.  She was about 44 and had trouble conceiving. They went through all the tests available in 1957.  Not much more could be done.  So, just like she always did, she looked forward to a different adventure.  They bought a car and were planning a trip to Mexico and then… You know the rest. I was born August 4, 1958 and she was turning 45 in December.  I asked her if she ever had reservations about having a child so late in life, and a first child at that.  She said no.  She just knew it was going to be fine.  And it was. More than fine.

This whole experience of The White Cabinet has been an ode to my Mom.  How I miss her.  Thank you everyone for your comments, encouragement and memories of your own mothers.  Some people have told me that my story has inspired them to honor their Mom’s in their own way. I never thought that this would affect so many people.  It’s extraordinary.  Now onward to year 3 of this amazing journey.  I can’t imagine what lies ahead.

So Many Faces

The ease of Mom’s drawings makes you forget how truly hard it must have been to bring a new spirit to each drawing.  The more I look, the more I see that each gal has her own unique personality.  I wonder where she started.  Did the clothing lead the way?  Or the real model? Or did the client dictate a specific look?  With a few lines of a face, she captured sophistication or wonder or sweetness.  Maybe haughty, but never mean.  That wasn’t Mom’s style.

Here are a few…

Face Collage

 

and of course, here’s my favorite…

Hilda in the 1920's

Hilda in the 1920’s