Disco Wasn’t the Only Great Thing From the 70s

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Pure Dead Brilliant

This trip down memory lane is courtesy of my friend Walshy.

Last weekend I put an exhaust fan in the ceiling for my wife’s grandfather. While my wife’s brother and I were fitting the fan in between the joists, we found something under the insulation. What we found was this:
JCP1

A JC Penney catalog from 1977. It’s not often blog fodder just falls in my lap, but holy hell this was two solid inches of it, right there for the taking. I thumbed through it quickly and found my next dining room set, which is apparently made by adding upholstery to old barrels:

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Also, I am totally getting this for my bathroom:

JCP3There’s plenty more home furnishings where those came from, however I’m not going to bore you with that. Instead, I’m going to bore you with something else. The clothes.

The clothes are fantastic.

Here’s how to get your butt kicked in elementary school:

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Just look at that belt. It’s like a boob-job for your pants. The belt loops have to be three inches long. And way to pull them up to your armpits, grandpa.

Here’s how to get your butt kicked in high school:

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This kid looks like he’s pretending to be David Soul, who is pretending to be a cop who is pretending to be a pimp that everyone knows is really an undercover cop who is pretending to be 15.

Here’s how to get your butt kicked on the golf course:

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This “all purpose jumpsuit” is, according to the description, equally appropriate for playing golf or simply relaxing around the house. Personally, I can’t see wearing this unless you happen to be relaxing around your cell in D-block.

Here’s how to get your butt kicked pretty much anywhere:

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If you look at that picture quickly, it looks like Mr. Bob “No-pants” Saget has his hand in the other guy’s pocket. In this case, he doesn’t, although you can tell just by looking at them that it’s happened – or if it hasn’t happened it will. Oh yes. It will. As soon as he puts down his matching coffee cup.

Here’s how to get your butt kicked at the beach:

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He looks like he’s reaching for a gun, but you know it’s probably just a bottle of suntan lotion … in a holster.

How to get your butt kicked in a meeting:

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If you wear this suit and don’t sell used cars for a living, I believe you can be fined and face serious repercussions, up to and including termination. Or imprisonment, in which case you’d be forced to wear that orange jumpsuit.

How to get your butt kicked on every day up to and including St. Patrick’s Day:

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Dear God in heaven, I don’t believe that color exists in nature. There is NO excuse for wearing either of these ensembles unless you’re working as a body guard for the Lucky Charms leprechaun.

In this next one, Your Search For VALUE Ends at Penneys.

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As does your search for chest hair.

And this — Seriously. No words.

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Oh wait, it turns out that there are words after all. Those words are What. The. HELL . I’m guessing the snap front gives you quick access to the chest hair. The little tie must be the pull tab.

Also, judging by the sheer amount of matching his/hers outfits, I’m guessing that in 1977 it was considered pretty stylish for couples to dress alike. These couples look happy, don’t they?

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I am especially fond of this one, which I have entitled “Cowboy Chachi Loves You Best.”

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And nothing showcases your everlasting love more than the commitment of matching bathing suits. That, and a blonde girl with a look on her face that says “I love the way your junk fights against that fabric.”

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Then, after the lovin’, you can relax in your one-piece matching terry cloth jumpsuits:

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I could go on, but I’m tired, and my eyes hurt from this trip back in time. I think it’s the colors. That said, I will leave you with these tasteful little numbers:

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Man, that’s sexy.

Blogger’s Note: While I recognize that unless something is an original work, it’s origin has some level of copyright.  This post originally appeared on  http://15minutelunch.blogspot.com/.  As soon as I found out that this originated there, I reached out to the blogmaster, Johnnie Virgil, who gave his blessing for this to be reprinted here. By all means, visit Johnnie and his 15 Minute Lunch blog.  And thanks again Johnnie!!

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Showing 21 comments
  • T

    You left out what the Penny’s and Sears catalogs were REALLY for….the lingerie ads! I can just imagine the construction workers building the house sitting in the attic, looking at the pictures. Did you find the beer cans, too?

  • Katie

    Oh God, that was painful to look at.

  • cookieaday

    Honey shall we try the matching look for the BASH? We would be the hits of the party! Lots of vintage stores here. . .maybe I can score us some highly flammable jumpsuits?!

  • Jen in Ga.

    OMG, that was so funny. The plaid suits maed me think of Herb Tarlek from WKRP. Oh, the tears are running down my face from laughing so hard!

  • The Grand View

    Polyester and apparently terry cloth were big in the 70’s. I am now doing the research on JC Penny’s 80s catalog. Now that would be funny too.

  • Susan

    The 70’s were probably the worst years in history for fashion, except maybe for our current fashion trends. Just wait 20-30 years and see what laughs you’ll get then! And for those of you under 40 who are making fun of these pictures–hey, we older ones had to personally suffer through those clothes choices!

  • Diane

    OMG, I graduated in 1977. I use to make my boyfriend and I matching shirts all the time. Now I remember why?? It really was in style. LOL My kids will see the pictures and can not believe guys and girls dressed a like. What were we thinking? What was he thinking? LOL

  • Connie

    Love it!

  • The Grand View

    A thank to all who visited and thanks Susan, Diane and Connie for first time comments. Please feel welcome to return anytime.

    Oh Cookie, the day that you find us both in matching jumpsuits will in fact be the day that hell freezes over.

  • David

    Looks like the back of my closet.

  • mitch terrill

    the clothes were brutal. the times were fun.

  • Don

    We lived thru these days and had great fun with matching shirts and sweaters. Leisure suits were BIG FASHION STATEMENTS!!!!

  • Doris

    OK, that’s the year I got married, and I will admit this: I made my groom and the guys in the wedding party wear baby blue tuxedos.

    By the way, people, it is JC Penney, with a second e. (See the first photo to verify.)

    Glad I missed some of these outfits, although if I still had my wardrobe from those days, it would be embarrassing — especially how much larger my body is now than then. Also, lots of polyester.

  • paula

    Hey, don’t you remember the western Clint Walker wore button square shirts like this as did a couple of other Western Stars? I find them very sexy with one corner left un buttoned..Also how scarey to see the matching toliet tank covers. The one value was the top did not give a resounding bang when a youngster let the lid down….I still think of searching for set covers for the winter though….I bet Penney’s still makes them too..Oh, my god. Get a look at the huge! shirt lapel on that coffee shirt/ jacket number. Thanks for the memories…

  • Kim

    I about died laughing as I scrolled through this post! Many of my relatives had the same outfits you posted here. (:

  • Lance Blazer

    I did not wear the polyester shirts/jump suits etc. I actually owned a green 3 piece suit like the one picture (not to mention a baby blue and a white one ) but I only wore that on weekends/evenings. Even in the 70s I stil wore navy or grey business suits to private school. I loved the big knots/wide ties, they looked great with a 3 piece suit. The tuxedos were pretty bad though. I wore a pink one with satin lapels when I was in my sister’s wedding party. She has a wedding picture up in her living room, I am embarrassed evertime I see it.

  • vintage dress

    With the 70s and 80s back in style, I just loving vintage clothing from the thrift shops. You can find designers like Chanel and Armani for cheap there. Ebay is great too!

  • Robert

    I was born in 1973, so my memories of the 70s are faint and distant. The 80s were awesome (I do remember them well), but the 90s sucked and this decade, which is more than 3/4 over, sucks, too.

    Give me Burt Reynolds. His mustache had more talent than Paris and Brittany combined and I didn’t get to see his manjunk.

    Anyone remember that poster he appeared in wearing nothing more than a smile and bag over his member?

  • The Grand View

    Hey Robert,
    Thanks for visiting. I just remember Farah Fawcett and Raquel Welsh posters myself. Brilliant!
    M

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