Vintage Ad Archive: The Wonderful And Colorful!

AlcProfColorHiram1958
AlcProfColorHiram1958

Spring is a time of thawing, of romance, and rebirth.  Our senses seem to be enhanced, and all sensations are amplified.  The sounds of birds fill the air, there's a smell of blossoms in the breeze, the sun warms your face as soon as you walk out the door, and the curtains are drawn back from our eyes – the cold grey daylight of winter disappears, revealing a world of hyper-saturated color and brilliant incandescence.

Likewise, our tastes change.  The heavier, deeper tones of cold weather are traded in for crisp and snappy flavors, deep stouts and brown liquors giving way to golden lagers, crystalline highballs, and the entire rainbow of cocktails.

And as we've only just survived Easter (possibly the most brightly-colored holiday of all), I figured this could be an appropriate moment to showcase a selection of my all-time favorite advertisements and promotional materials – pieces that don't just use color as an afterthought, but as an integral part of their attractiveness and appeal.

A Smirnoff ad from 1958
A Smirnoff ad from 1958

Vodka companies have released a number of memorable brightly-hued ads over the years, using color to showcase how well their product works in a variety of cocktails.  An entire spectrum of fruits, sodas, juices, and garnishes were utilized, and assisted in constructing our modern-day concept of Vodka as the all-purpose mixing liquor.

Not to be outdone by their smoother cousins, Gin producers stepped up the chromatic stakes, and responded with their own intense advertisements.

And Whiskey companies gave their own campaigns some rainbow twists.

But predictably, the companies that produced the most colorful ads were those with the most colorful products, and a rainbow of promotion was unleashed for various cordials, aperitifs, and liqueurs.

In fact, looking at all this is giving me the itch to invite some friends over for drinks.  If only I had a guidebook, and knew how to bring this sort of pizazz to my own parties...  I wonder if such a thing exists?

AlcProfColorHiramBrochure
AlcProfColorHiramBrochure
AlcProfColorHiramBrochure2
AlcProfColorHiramBrochure2

Oh. Well, then.  I suppose that's a pretty good excuse to have a party.  Time to make up a guest list, figure out which classic cocktails to serve, and start sending out invitations to a technicolor springtime soiree!