Criterion Restaurant, London.
L/S of a fashion model walking along a raised catwalk in the restaurant. Man stands behind a microphone presumably describing her outfit. Narrator states: "There was a time when women were content to wear the trousers, but now they're wearing another conventional part of male dress - the waistcoat." M/S of the model who is wearing a rather fabulous shaped waistcoat with sticky out collar. This show is at the "Waistcoat Club". Model strikes various poses. M/S of a group sitting at a table. One of the woman wears a red and white striped shirt with a blue waistcoat with stars on it - a variation on the American "stars and stripes" flag. C/U of her showing the outfit to good effect. Camera pans down. Narrator says something about this outfit being inspired by a honeymoon in America.
Another waistcoat is modelled - red velvet with black trims. Narrator describes this outfit as having "the accent on glamour". Model wears long gloves. Shots of another waistcoat being modelled are intercut with shots of the audience. Narrator recounts the history of the waistcoat.
A young Jon Pertwee (later of course Doctor Who!) is seen talking to Jean Marsh (actress and later wife of JP) about waistcoats. Jon has a collection of waistcoats dating back 300 years and he was a founder member of the Waistcoat Club. More styles are modelled. L/S of Geraldine Smith modelling an embroidered waistcoat suitable to wear on the beach (great hat and sunglasses too!) - a photographer is seen in the foreground as well as large film light. L/S of Jon Pertwee and Jean Marsh with another couple - Michael Pertwee (Jon's brother) and his wife Valerie French. C/U of Jon putting a cigarette case in the pocket of his ornately embroidered waistcoat.
Narrator states that the Waistcoat Club was founded in 1953 to "add a little colour to men's austere clothing." C/U of Michael Pertwee and his wife Valerie. L/S of another group of waistcoat fans which includes Peter Cushing, host Charles Stein and Mike Hawthorn. Various shots of the group and of their waistcoats. C/U of "in-the-fashion" Helene Cordet gets a few hints from James Norbury (they compare waistcoats). C/U of Sandra Dorne who wears a super glamorous leopard print waistcoat which the narrator observes: "knocks spots off the others". A group of three models pose in their waistcoats. "Some men may complain" states the narrator, "but if waistcoats can look like this on the fair sex, let's forget convention and give them equality."
Note: what a great step forward for feminism!
Sandra Dorne was a British film actress. Helene Cordet was French but appeared in 3 British films. Jean Marsh was married to Jon Pertwee sometime in 1955 - later divorced. Not sure who James Norbury is. According to paper records, the girl in the stars and stripes outfit is June Oakes. Other personalities mentioned in paperwork are Charles Forte, Anna Valentina, Penny Morial (sp?) and Mary Parker. Models are listed in paperwork as Jean Clark, Geraldine Lawson Smith, June Woodcroft and Diana Martin.
This was apparently a New Year's Eve party.
Criterion Restaurant, London.