Ashley Appeal

Today’s Friday special – and it is quite special – is brought to you by Ashley Havinden.

Sales Appeal cover 1955 Ashley Havinden

Unfortunately, the interior of the magazine finds it hard to live up to that cover.  For a start, it is mostly in black and white – this is one of the few other bits of colour.

Shelf Appeal stripes for boxes

What’s more it is the run up to the 1955 Packaging Exhibition at Olympia and so the advertisers mostly want to tell us about their stands and their packaging in quite some detail.  There are even some samples included.

Sales Appeal packaging sample

Which is not to say that the magazine is not interesting.  It would be worth the price of admission for this insight into the world of the travelling salesman alone.

Sales Appeal Travelling salesmen cases ad

But the articles in the magazine are considerably more progressive than the advertising.  There are articles on both Donald Brun and Herbert Leupin to start with.  Sadly they’re only illustrated in black and white, but here are a couple of the posters illustrated, re-found in colour.

Donald Brun Zwicky cat 1946

Herbert Leupin Suchard poster 1952

And I can now also tell you that Donald Brun lived in a house which dated back to 1382.  So there.

In addition, there’s an interesting ‘Designer’s Diary’ musing on contemporary design and functionalism, which managed to take in everything from toilet brushes and buses to an exhibition of catalogues.    If I’m reading it right, I think the toilet brush is the winner.

I don’t know much about Sales Appeal, the phrase is so common as to be effectively ungooglable.  I suspect it may be a later incarnation of Shelf Appeal, which was definitely around in the late 1930s, when both McKnight Kauffer and Tom Eckersley designed for it.

Shelf Appeal card

Which makes this picture from the magazine particularly pleasing, because I know how much it will appeal to the other Shelf Appeal.  This is inside Simpsons of Piccadilly, whose main designer was Ashley Havinden.  And if that wasn’t enough, there’s a cut-paper display to boot.

Simpsons Havinden

A very up to date shop display, apparently, and just look at how those shirts are wrapped.

  • Yes, that’s my namesake all right. The covers do a great job of advertising what is, all in all, a pretty dull magazine: Shelf Appeal. It morphed in to Sales Appeal, which was also pretty dull on the inside, too. But that pic of Simpsons pleases, alright.

  • Yes indeed. I’d quite like that Father Christmas if anyone’s got one spare. What do you reckon Simpsons have left in their attic?

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