May 22

Home Parties

Posted by lori . 30 Comments


Last Friday, I hosted an Origami Owl party.

Origami Owl Box

Origami Owl is a line of jewelry that includes lockets, charms, chains, plates, dangles and tags that you put together to create a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry that reflects your story and style.

Origami Owl Display

I have always loved home parties, both hosting and attending. I remember my mom hosting parties…Stanley Home Products, Tupperware and Beeline Fashions. In fact, my mom had just signed up to sell Stanley Home Products when she found out she was pregnant with yours truly. So how did it all begin?

Stanley Hostess Party

Photo Source

At the turn of the 20th century, small companies, like the Fuller Brush Company, went national. In 1931, Frank Stanley Beveridge, a successful Fuller Brush salesman, opened his own cleaning supplies company, called Stanley Home Products. Beveridge learned that one of his salesmen was making record-breaking sales by demonstrating his products in the living rooms of women “hostesses” who volunteered their homes and invited their friends to attend “a Stanley party.” In exchange for her efforts, the hostess was given a complimentary hostess prize, such as a toaster, a coffee pot or free Stanley products.

Retro Tupperware Party

Photo Source

In the late 1940s, a woman named Brownie Wise discovered that she could make a good living from selling Stanley Home Products and became one of the most successful unit managers in the Detroit area within one year. Wise took the skills that she learned as a Stanley dealer and manager and capitalized on them when she stumbled across Earl Tupper’s product, the Wonderbowl. She convinced him that his products should be sold not in stores, but at home parties, where women would demonstrate the revolutionary, unbreakable bowls to their friends and neighbors. Tupper hired her on the spot to head up his entire sales operation, Tupperware Home Parties.

This interesting information comes from a new documentary by Laurie Kahn-Leavitt called Tupperware! presented by American Experience on PBS.

Beeline Fashions Postcard

Photo Source

One of my favorite home parties from the 1960’s & 1970’s was Beeline Fashions. Founded by Beatrice F. Birginal (known as “Bee”) and her husband J. Edison Birginal, Bee had a knack for mixing-and-matching clothes. Bee’s line of clothing, hence the name, was founded on a uniquely simple fashion secret…buy three or four pieces and get five or six outfits. It was about getting more for your dollar through color coordination.

I always thought it was very grown-up and glamorous having a rack of clothes brought to your house, then having your friends over to try on and model the different outfits. Of course, there were also special party snacks. No wonder I have fond memories.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013 at 5:46 pm and is filed under Want to Talk About (Whatever). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

30 Responses to " Home Parties"

  • Max's Mom says:

    OMD! What a great post! Tupperware parties – wow…I’m getting old 🙂
    Hey, I also want to say thank you for your sweet words about our little Carly – thank you! It really helped!

  • houndstooth says:

    I love attending home parties, but I am not so keen on having them at my house. I get so wrapped up in the whole Martha Stewart hostess dream that I drive myself crazy!

  • Ann Paws says:

    I started seeing the origami owl stuff recently and think they look very cute! Thanks for all the history on the parties, it’s pretty interesting learning how they all started. The pictures are nice too.

  • Sue says:

    I’ve have been to a few selling parties for bags, candles, essence and Jamie Oliver. Always nice to have a get together.

  • Daisy says:

    SHE’s getting past all the parties for products. Getting grumpy in old age.

    Useless fact #38B: The owl is the only origami creature SHE can make.

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

  • urban hounds says:

    I love those old party photos so cute! I am not much of a hostess these days all my local friends live in the city and the dogs get a bit crazy when the we have guests but I would love to host more parties

    urban hounds

  • sue taylor says:

    We used to have tupperware parties over here, still have some pieces that I use from over 30 years ago!

    The jewllery party looks super.

  • LOL, where did you get those pics? I remember tupperware, but not the others. The jewelry looks fun too.

  • Fern Reed says:

    LOVE THE OWL!!! You could sell your stuff you make on your blog!!!! It is surely beautiful enough!!!
    Pretty things you always show us!!!!

  • Kirsten says:

    Wow, look at those pictures! I used to have Naked Ladies Parties with my girlfriends, where we all brought clothing we didn’t want anymore and swapped around. Are there really still things like Tupperware parties going on? I feel we have become so inundated with Stuff as a culture, it is hard to imagine a group of people getting excited to get together and look at more stuff…:)

  • Nobody seems to do those anymore over here.
    Lynne x

  • Mayzie says:

    Oh, wow! That was super duper interesting! Mom and I never knew how those pawties started. Do you think they have pawties like that for pet products? I bet it would be super successful!

    Wiggles & Wags,

  • Patty says:

    I have never hosted a party. I have attended a few though. I love Tupperware!

  • Kat says:

    The packaging and logo has sold me. Origami Owl sounds like an awesome product and company!

  • Oh my word, Tupperware parties…..Mum has gone all nostalgic!! Deccy x

  • Kat says:

    Why?!?! Why must you continue to lead me astray?!? 😀 I’ve never heard of Origami Owl, but am enchanted. My sweet SIL (the one who first told me of your blog and the one who *loves* owls!) first led me astray with home parties…with Party Lite candles. I tend to find the idea of hosting one a bit daunting (probably because I don’t want to clean my house up!) but love the get-togethers at others’ and love doing “catalog parties” as a way to share the stuff with folks without them feeling pressured to buy something on the spot.

    (I find it distracting when I’m going through your comments and see the other “Kat” and have a brief moment wondering if I’m now commenting in my sleep!)

  • What a great post, and I love the old posters. It brings back memories of Tupperware parties for me. No beeline fashion ones though, what a pity! I hear of clothes swap parties these days but have never attended.

    Thank you for keeping me company on the road despite my dreadful absence here. I have free wifi today! I feel like a drug addict getting her fix LOL.

  • BettyBee says:

    Going through a storage box, in an attempt to clear some of my clutter, I came upon a small jewelry box full of award pins and various pieces of jewelry that I had earned in my years of selling Beeline. I had to Google it to see what I could find. That was the most fun job I’ve ever had.

    • cindy mccauley says:

      My grandpa was Edison’s brother. I too remember my mom having parties. As a woman in the 50’s and 60’s it must have been a great opportunity just to get together with friends and maybe score a really good piece of clothing…not to mention make a little money of your own. Those days are gone I am afraid

  • Becky says:

    I just happened to look up Beeline Fashions to see if they were still in business and wanted t see what this site was all about. I lost my parents a few years ago, so all of this history brings back alot of memories as my mom sold these and other things on the party plan and my dad was a door to door salesman for Fuller Brush and Raleigh Products and was still a salesman clear up to his passing. Too bad we can’t bring back those times!

    • J.C. says:

      I was also looking up Beeline to see if they are still in business. They had seamless underwear and I can’t find it anywhere else. Beeline wasn’t just about parties, though. Their products were excellent. I wish I could find clothing as comfortable and well made.

    • cindy mccauley says:

      As the grand daughter of Edison’s brother, I can tell you they have long ago went out of business, but you can find some of their things online. The quality really is amazing. Not sure about undies though!

    • Cindy Fulton says:

      Hi, Becky, I saw your comment on this page. I was trying G to find out if Berlin is still in business too. I don’t know who to ask. Did you find out. I loved their p.j’s when I was a teenager. I am now 61. 🙂 I would appreciate it if you could give me any response 🙂 Thanks Cindy

    • Darla says:

      I sold Beeline fashions back in the 70’s. I remember doing very well with the sales and I loved the clothing. And then I moved to a different state and let my business go. I am wondering if Beeline is still available as a self employed business for home parties. Are there catalogs available?

  • cindy mccauley says:

    My maiden name is Birginal and Edison was my grandpa’s brother. I remember touring the plant and my mom had a couple of parties. He was a very interesting guy, and got his start selling nylons door-to-door. These photos bring back good memories for me.

  • virginia neuner says:

    looking for the name of clothing line sold at home parties similar to Beeline but these clothes were all knits and were interchangeable.

  • Grace Hartner says:

    I can remember my Mom having several Beeline Parties. I had several outfits from “Beeline”. Nothing like that now..

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