Tag Archives: fashion show

The 1960s Almonte Fashion Show — Names Names Names

The 1960s Almonte Fashion Show — Names Names Names

Women’s age-old interest in clothes was demonstrated again when a total of 400 which included a sprinkling of males, attended the Fashion Show in the town hall, sponsored by the Almonte Ladies Curling Club. Mrs. R. A. Jamieson was convener of the Show and practically all the members assisted in some capacity to make the event  an outstanding success. The stage which in the raw, is a most depressing sight, was transformed into a rose garden with an arbor forming the entrance to the ramp down which the models walked.

 There were rose covered trellises, a picket fence, etc., all arranged to form an attractive setting for the attractive models. Mrs. Parrett, proprietor of the Lanark Shop, opened the show and acted as commentator throughout. 

The merchandise was loaned by Pimlott’s Ladies’ Wear, Milady Dress Shop, Johnson and McCreary, Smolkin’s Men’s Wear, The Mariette Shoppe, The Lanark Shop, The Misses Hogan, J. H. Proctor, Phil. Needham and the Canada Fur Manufacturing Company of Toronto, of which Mrs. K, Burns is the local agent. Mrs. Parrett introduced the models all of whom are local. 

They were Mrs. Joyce Hill, Mrs. Muriel Hill, Miss Mary Hourigan, Mrs. Clare Kitts, Mrs. Freda Levitan and Mrs. Irene Duncan. Modelling men’s clothes were Gordon Clifford and Gerry Green. Three children who also acted as models, stole the show for a time. They were Ruth Leishman, Barbara Ann Duncan and Donald Duncan. Mrs. Clare Kitts, wearing a black gabardine suit and two piece mink neckpiece from Milady Dress Shop, was the first model. 

With this she wore a pink blouse and milan straw hat and black accessories. The next was Miss Mary Hourigan wearing a turquoise crepe dress from the Mariette Shoppe. Mrs. Freda Levitan next featured a blue and white cotton from Pimlott’s Ladies’ Wear. Mrs. Muriel Hill modelled a navy taffeta from Pimlott’s Ladies’ Wear with a hat of navy blue trimmed with taffeta and white flowers. 

Mrs. Joyce Hill was introduced next, wearing grey gabardine slacks and T-shirt from the Lanark Shop. The sixth model was Mrs. Irene Duncan, wearing a three-piece suit in rayon herringbone from Pimlott’s, with green kid shoes with platform soles from Proctor’s Shoe Store. There were 40 costumes shown in all with the models appearing more or less in rotation. One especially attractive ensemble was shown by Mrs. Joyce Hill–It was a grey kid jacket worn over a green gabardine suit The fur jacket was lined with matching green gabardine was from Milady DressShop and was supplied by the Canada Fur Manufacturing Company (J. T. Conway and Son.) Another fur coat by the same company that excited considerable pleased comment was a full length muskrat coat made with a border. This was worn by Mrs. Muriel Hill with a smart cocoa brown gabardine one-piece dress. Mrs. Irene Duncan also displayed a handsome g controlled by darts. 

The show closed with Mis. Joyce Hill and Mrs. Clare Kitts appearing as bridesmaid and bride respectively. Joyce wore a yellow bengaline taffeta with two net overskirts, gold sandals from Proctors and flowers from Misses Hogan. Mrs. Kitts’ wedding gown was. of all over chantilly lace over taffeta and she wore a floor length veil of French net with hand embroidery. Both the bridesmaid’s dress and the bride’s dress were from Milady Dress Shop.


related reading

1960’s Fashion Shows– Once a Huge Extravaganza!

The Alice Walker Fashion Show 1974 Carleton Place

You Better Work it Girl! Cover Girls of Carleton Place 1965

Miss Civitan Club 1976? Who Are These Women?

Mary Cook’s Deportment Classes for Young Ladies in Carleton Place

Carleton Place Mod Fashion Show 1960’s

And Then There was Cook’s– and Most of All Mary Cook

The Alice Walker Fashion Show 1974 Carleton Place



All Photos from the Carleton Place Canadian file from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


The Alice Walker Dress Shop in Carleton Place held their annual Christmas Fashion Show at Carambeck School November 12th in 1974. The show was held on behalf of A.R.C. Industries to help in the operation of their sheltered workshop. Ticket sales benefited them over $200 from the show. There was an excellent turnout despite the heavy rains, and over 90 outfits were modeled.

There were 12 girls from Almonte and Carleton Place  that modeled:


Laura Davidson,  Mary Lyn McDermid, Angela Scott, Gabre Craig, Joanne Redpath, Nancy Lay, Judy Guerard, Nancy Barry, Carol Dickensen, Diane Smithson, Mary Osterholt, and Cathy Hughes.


Music was provided by pianist/ organist Michael Mailey. Cosmetics were by Lillian Pye the Vanda Beauty Councillor in Carleton Place. Behind the scenes help was managed by Pat Vetter assisted by Wendy MacNeil. Commentary was given by Gilian Wall.

A blast from the Past!



You Better Work it Girl! Cover Girls of Carleton Place 1965

Miss Civitan Club 1976? Who Are These Women?

Mary Cook’s Deportment Classes for Young Ladies in Carleton Place

Carleton Place Mod Fashion Show 1960’s

And Then There was Cook’s– and Most of All Mary Cook


Mary Cook’s Deportment Classes for Young Ladies in Carleton Place


I wrote about a fashion show organized by Mary Cook in the 60’s at the Carleton Place Town Hall. Mary Cook also had deportment classes and Janice Tennant Campbell sent me this picture from the 60’s.


Jim Amy Kirkpatrick

I remember that you never carry 2 gloves. Not wearing them put them away. Also when you sit your legs should make an S. I questioned this and Mary said the best I could do with such short legs was a C.
Julie Kirkpatrick


I remember her coming to teach some of this to the members of my 4H group. Around 1974 ?? We were at Pooh Bell’s house …..can’t recall why there LOL. I have distinct memories of walking across the living room with a book balanced on my head. Mary saying “shoulders back, chin up and arms softly at your side “. LOL. I often think of that while I’m slouched in a chair. 
Lorraine Nephin


Lots of girls took them. Every time I slurp my soup Keith says did Mary Cook teach you that. We didn’t go to Toronto. We got to go to a fancy restaurant in Ottawa and we all had to order spaghetti and eat it properly with a spoon and fork.
Carol McDonald


Recognize Janet Knowlton , Edith and Charlie Knowltons daughter . Edith ran a grocery store across from Maple leaf dairy in CP.
Lynne Johnson we went to Toronto too by train and stayed at the Royal York. I remember going to Chatelaine mag and also to a shopping district where I bought a really cool mini dress. And being taught how to eat our food and how to hold (not!) onto a railing on stairs. How to properly stand and walk. Many are ingrained in me to this day!
Lori Armour


Lynne Johnson me too! We got to stay in a hotel downtown and got to be in the audience for a taping of Front Page Challenge.

Until the 1960’s educational institutions incorporated social graces as a crucial aspect of a well-rounded curriculum, and finishing schools specialized in etiquette, deportment and proper manners at the table. Private deportment classes were run locally by Mary Cook. They were taught how to sit, how to speak, how to dress, how to wear their hair, how to entertain, how to be a house guest, how to eat correctly and how to just generally be a polite person in society.

Comments: Dawn Jones— When I was a young girl in 4-H club, Mary paid a visit to one of the weekly meetings and taught us the finer points of etiquette.

Karen Blackburn Chenier- My mother signed me up for “charm school” with Mary in grade nine.Classes were held upstairs of the Cooks store on Bridge St every Tues night.Important topics such as hygiene,,silverware placement ,etc. were discussed . As a self conscious 14 year old i was mortified that anyone would know I was attending and after being dropped off would hide in the doorway.Graduation included a trip to TO on the train for a 1 night stay and a visit to the taping of Front Page Challenge where I remember Pierre Berton trying to peek down Adrienne Clarkson’s neckline.All in all a memorable time and i still proudly sign my name Karen Blackburn Chenier CSG {Charm School Graduate}


Carleton Place Mod Fashion Show 1960’s


Trotman family clippings 1967

Canadians generally are “sourpusses” and must team to “loosen up a bit” for Centennial Year, Mrs. Frank Ryan told a group here Tuesday. Making her first public appearance as regional chairman for women’s activities of the Ontario centennial planning branch, Mrs. Ryan said Ottawa Valley women should welcome centennial visitors with warm smiles and clean, tidy homes. “We want a good housekeeping job up the valley,” she said, “to remember that we are hostesses in Centennial Year.

And as hostesses we must have our towns and villages, particularly their front doors and back doors, neat and clean and fresh.” Mrs. Ryan spoke at the graduation of a deportment class of 13 teenage girls after a 14-week course conducted by Mary Cook.

Mrs. Ryan deplored the cold, abrupt attitude of some store clerks and said Canadians, compared with people of European and Latin American countries, are rude, lazy and arrogant. She said Canadians could learn about courtesy from people of the Argentine who are rigidly schooled in this until they are 18. Smile please “When centennial visitors come to our restaurants, to our service stations, or just stop us on the street,” she said, “let us smile a welcome and tell them they are welcome; that we’re glad to see them and do what we can to help them. Let’s create an image that will make them think pleasantly of us as we start the second hundred years.”

Mrs. Ryan said there would be centennial museums and swimming pools but she preferred to see the cleaning up of towns and cities, rather than preserving something that has outlived its usefulness. “As we proceed with our organization,” she said, “we want somebody to head up a women’s committee in every village, town and city of this big Eastern Ontario area, to give leadership.”

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada27 Jan 1966, Thu  •  Page 35

Mary Cooks Deportment Class..

From Deborah Bowker -I often wonder if Mary Cook realizes what an influential person she has been in so many lives that are graced to know her. Her teachings and guidance for oh so many Deportment Class students will follow each of us throughout our lives. I cannot begin to count the number of times – daily – that her lessons pop into my head, heart, and actions … She has been instrumental in helping to shape the lives and characters of many, many, grateful lives ! She holds my deepest and grateful gratitude … ❤️ — with Mary Cook.

Photo of Mindy Merkley-Melinda Cook above ( aka Mary Cook’s daughter) Her memory today of the fashion shows she helped her mum with. Thank you Mindy!

“I can’t remember the number of times I walked that runway as a child. Mom always managed to find a way to make us cooperate to participate in those shows. I can still remember that slanted floor of the stage and the changes rooms we had in the back. There were many times I’d be running around in just my underwear looking for my next dress or outfit to wear. We used to have The Red Room on the second floor of our store where mom would have us practice before the fashion shows. We called it The Red Room because it had plush red carpet. She used to hold her deportment classes there and mock fashion shows for the girls in the classes. She would also hold small fashion shows there for customers when new styles of clothing came into the store. The second floor was loaded with ladies and children’s wear. When we were kids, and both mom and dad worked at the store, they’d hire Honey Blaine to babysit us at the store. I remember playing hide and seek among the hundreds of hanging dresses and crawling into display cases. You’ve brought back some fantastic memories Linda. Thanks for the gift.” NO thank you Mindy for sending this..🙂

You can see Mary Cook in hte background.. For more of her models read- The Cook Girls – The Mary Cook Girls- Peter Bradley


I’ll make sure mom ( Mary Cook) sees everyone’s comments. Thank you so much for your kind words. I was reviewing some old slides and found this picture of one of her deportment classes in front of Cook’s on Bridge Street in CP. Enjoy.

The 1960s Almonte Fashion Show — Names Names Names

Mary Cook and her Telephone Pin

1960’s Fashion Shows– Once a Huge Extravaganza!

The Cook Girls – The Mary Cook Girls- Peter Bradley

Carleton Place Mod Fashion Show 1960’s

The Alice Walker Fashion Show 1974 Carleton Place

Music and Fashion Show at Ladies Who Lunch June 6th Carleton Place



Music and Fashion Show

For the table to table fashion show at Ladies Who Lunch we will have Lanark County’s own Wade Foster on the fiddle to provide the music. Born and raised in Perth, ON, Wade is known all over the Ottawa Valley and beyond as a multi-instrumentalist and singer.

Stores are :


Nancy’s Impressions,
149 Bridge Street in Carleton Place (613) 257-2124


The Dress Shop
141 Bridge Street
Carleton Place, Ontario (613) 253-8080


579 White Road
Carleton Place, Ontario (613) 253-0889

62 Bridge Street,
Carleton Place, Ontario
K7C 2V3 613-253-8097