Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Happy Mother’s Day!!

Mother’s Day has always provided supreme opportunities for kitsch. Be it flower arrangements, stuffed animal displays in front of gas stations for last minute pick-ups, or greeting cards – store bought and handmade equally qualifying – Mother’s Day is a kitsch karousel that never ceases to go round.

Almost everything I owned growing up in Detroit was thrown out when my mom passed away suddenly when I was 16 and my father remarried. Aside from a rubber doll I got for my first birthday whose head was tied on with a string and a Ben Casey bobble head with a hole in his heart, the result of me shoving a pencil through it after an unrequited love incident at 12, I had almost nothing to remind me of the sweeter life that preceded all of this. (Which is why it meant so much to me to get back into the house I grew up in a few weeks ago.)

About 20 years ago, after years of thinking these two medically deficient dolls were the only artifacts of Little Allee that remained, my brother shipped me my old steamer trunk that had been hogging a corner of his garage since I graduated college. I had always assumed it was empty but inside was a small cigar box that contained letters, post cards, hamburger recipes, and this Mother’s Day card I had made for my mom when I was God knows how old. I hope it wasn’t too old as my interpretation of the world was slightly naive.

I have no idea what country Mekoila is right above the S. Pole and I’m happy to see that I thought California was important enough to hog the entire West side of the United States. I have no idea if I actually thought that Michigan, where I drew my happy little self in, was really the east-most state or if I forgot to leave room for it when I drew this map that looks more like a cross-section of a cow with different meat cuts in it. I hope you can see the little thumb I gave Michigan for accuracy right above my left hand. And I’m happy that I took the time to draw myself in my favorite type of pleated dress in grades 2-6:

I’m the tall one in that photo with my two cousins, Sue and Marjorie Singer. And if memory serves, that’s actually a giant Mother’s Day rose tucked into my belt that I made out of a toilet paper roll and tissue paper to give to my mom a couple of years after I made this card. My mother’s name was Rose so that flower had a lot of significance in our family.

I definitely misspelled ‘You’re’ but I’m happy to see that I gave the rose much petal definition and that the leaves look like jubilant uplifted arms as it was a very happy rose and a very happy Rose that celebrated Mother’s Day that year. I did, however, completely cheese out on the poetry I included inside. I have no idea where I copied this from but I’m happy to see that I knew enough as a budding designer to carry over the rose logo.

Thankfully in my later years I progressed to the point where I didn’t need someone else’s words to express how I was feeling.

Never one to leave space empty for long, I ended the card with a picture of a present. Of course, my mom’s only present from me that year was this card but as a first grade teacher she always appreciated the effort I put into art.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. And Happy Mother’s Day, Rose, wherever you may be now.

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Categories: Art, Children, Crafts, Detroit, Families, Holidays, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Painting, People, Photograph, Self expression

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Face Scarf

I was very excited when aKitschinado Michael Eli is sent me these two face scarves that his sister-in-law Diane made for me.


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Categories: Crafts, Fashion, Hair, Hats, Holidays, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch ‘O The Day – Pufnstuffin’ With Sid Krofft

New Year’s Eve, 2011. I’m coming down Sunset Plaza, a really windy road with million dollar homes right above Sunset Blvd. in LA. I’m in my Green Beetle, which is a lean and fast machine.

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Categories: Accessories, Animation, Art, Boogie Wonderland, Celebrity, Crafts, Creativity, Dance, Disco, Film, Food, Furniture and Housewares, Games, Hollywood, House, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Memorabilia, Music, People, Place, Self expression, Songwriting, Toy, TV/Radio, video

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – As Generic As It Gets

When it comes to kitsch, there’s always an excellent chance of it thriving in a 99¢ store. Even more so when it’s a penny less:

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Categories: Consumer Alert!, Crafts, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Products

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Post-Christmas “I Can’t Believe I Ate The Whole Thing” Iron-On Patch

cant-believe...whole-thing-patch_9903

After six, count them six, Christmas parties/dinners, I combed through my collection to find this patch in case I needed to iron it on over any rips in clothing that might have occurred from ingesting the aforementioned full turkey meals. Somehow the sting of weight gain is outweighed by fashion statements such as these for me.

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Categories: Advertising/ Promotion, Art, Clothes, Crafts, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Birthdaying at the Madonna Inn – Part 1

Bright and early the weekend before Thanksgiving Prudence Fenton and I hopped in the mustache van and drove up the coast to San Luis Obispo.

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Categories: Advertising/ Promotion, Architecture, Art, Bathroom, Brands, Crafts, Creativity, Families, Food, Furniture and Housewares, Holidays, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, People, Place, Self expression, Sign, Travel, Travel souvenir

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Get Out Your Bellbottoms and Marshmallows!

If anyone’s going to be in the Boston area this coming Saturday, head to Somerville where thousands of Fluffed-up folks will be honoring Fluff, the marshmallow food topping invented there, and where I’ll be judging the 70′s fashion show while people cremate my song, “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire, by changing the lyrics to reflect their love of Fluff.

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Categories: Brands, Crafts, Earth Wind & Fire, Fashion, Food, Hats, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, September

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day has always provided supreme opportunities for kitsch. Be it flower arrangements, stuffed animal displays in front of gas stations for last minute pick-ups, or greeting cards – store bought and handmade equally qualifying –  Mother’s Day is a kitsch karousel that never ceases to go round.

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Categories: Art, Crafts, Detroit, Dolls, Families, Holidays, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, People

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – USA! Patriotic Kitsch

Rarely do I celebrate someone getting their head blow on off but the jubilant mood around the world heralding the demise of the long skinny one with the poisonous manners is begging to be celebrated with the best patriotic crafts that kitsch has to offer. Here’s a small sampling of what’s available for sale as we speak on places like Ebay and Etsy. In most cases I’ve used the exact names the artists have given their work.

The Liberty Bell:

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Categories: Animals, Art, Crafts, Fashion, Hats, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Political, Toy

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Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – 1960′s Pretty Girl Gravel Art

Nothing makes a face look more beautiful than when it’s portrayed in gravel. Gravel art, or more professionally known as Crushed Marble Mosaic art, was massive in the 1950′s and 60′s. A cousin of the most popular DIY artform, paint-by-number paintings, hand-glued crushed marble mosaic art covered post Atomic Age walls as thick as shag carpeting smothered the floors. The most ubiquitous gravel paintings were made by the big dog of DIY kits, Craftmaster.

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Categories: Art, Crafts, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Painting

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