Vikki Dougan (The real Jessica Rabbit) in Life Magazine (1953)

Throughout the 1950s model, actress and It girl Vikki Dougan (born 1929) was most famous for appearing at social events in a series of daring low-cutbackless dresses.

In 1953 publicity man Milton Weiss had the idea of promoting Vikki using the backless dresses to garner publicity. The idea was to gain a contrast with the fashion for models and actresses with large bosoms, such as Jayne Mansfield.

Throughout the 1950s she scandalized more respectable Hollywood society with her appearances in her daring backless dresses.

In 1953 photographer Ralph Crane photographed her extensively for Life Magazine. Their edition of October 26 featured her on the cover.

In the 1980s she got another claim to fame as the muse for cartoon pin up Jessica Rabbit.

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953 via

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953 via

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953 via

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953

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Vikki Dougan by Ralph Crane, 1953

Vintage Photos of Queen of Scandal Lady Idina Sackville (1893 – 1955)

British aristocrat Lad Idina Sackville (1893 – 1955) lived most of her life in Kenya. In her lifetime she scandalized upper class society with her deviant behaviour and promiscuous lifestyle. The story of her life reads like sensationalist fiction. She was the eldest child of lord de la warr, her mother was a member of one of the richest families in Victorian Britain. Her cousin was the writer Vita Sackville-West. She married and divorced five times:

1] 1913-19 Captain Euan Wallace

2] 1919-1923 Captain Charles Gordon

3] 1923-1930 Josslyn “Joss” Hay, later 22nd Earl of Erroll

4] 1930-1938 a white hunter called Donald Carmichael Haldeman

5] 1939-1946 Flight Lieutenant William Vincent Soltau, an RAF pilot based in Mombasa

She had three children from her first two marriages. When she separated from Wallace he took custody of their sons. In 1924 Idina moved to Kenya where she became the leading light in the so-called “Happy Valley” social set, which enthusiastically took part in orgies, binge-drinking, wife-swapping and drug taking at Idinas mountain home, Clouds. She was renowned for greeting visitors as she emerged dripping from her immense green onyx bath. When she divorced her second husband in 1930, their daughter was sent home to England to be raised by her aunt in Wiltshire.

The notorious Happy Valley set was depicted in White Mischief, a film dramatising the events surrounding the murder of Lady Idina’s third husband. He was shot dead at the wheel of his Buick at a crossroads in the middle of the night. Convention has it that the killer was Sir Henry “Jock” Delves Broughton. The motiv was jealousy over Erroll’s affair with his young wife, Diana. He was acquitted of the murder in 1941 but later committed suicide, which was considered tantamount to an admission of guilt.

In the 1920s, the writer Michael Arlen wrote a book The Green Hat where the heroine Iris Storm is based on a portrait of Lady Idina Sackville. This book was turned into a movie A Woman of Affairs starring Greta Garbo.

Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh is also based on Lady Idina’s character and lifestyle.

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Lady Idina via

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Cecil Beaton’s portrait of Lady Idina for Vogue Magazine via

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Lady Idina via

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Idina is seen here on the cover of Tatler in 1923 with the man who became her third husband – Josslyn Hay, eventually 22nd Earl of Erroll via

Vintage Photos Featuring The Fabulous Dolly Sisters

The sisters, Roszika (later known as Rose or Rosie) and Janszieka (later known as Yansci or Jenny) Deutsch, were born on October 25, 1892 in Budapest, Hungary.  Their parents, Julius and Margaet Deutsch, emigrated to the United States in 1905. As children, the sisters trained as dancers and began earning money in beer halls as early as 1907.

In 1913, the Dolly Sisters decided to try to forge separate careers. Rosie appeared in The Whirl of the World on stage while Jenny teamed up with dancer Harry Fox (whom she married in 1912) in Honeymoon Express.  Jenny and Fox also toured the vaudeville circuit as a dance duo. Both sister made their film debuts in 1915: Jenny in The Call of the Dance and Rose in Lily and the Rose.

After World War I ended, the Dolly Sisters moved to France where they bought a chateau. They toured the theatres and dance halls of Europe and were courted by numerous wealthy men and royalty including Carol II of Romania, Christian X of Denmark and Alfonso XIII of Spain.

While in Europe, the sisters became well known for gambling excursion at casinos and horse tracks which were usually financed by wealthy admirers.

By early 1927, the Dolly Sisters’ popularity began to decline. Their highly publicized Paris show A vol d’oiseau, closed after eight weeks. The sisters spent more time gambling than performing and eventually retired by 1929.

In 1945, 20th Century Fox released the biographical film The Dolly Sisters. June Haver portrayed Rosie and Betty Grable portrayed Jenny.DollySisters

The Dolly Sisters via

Madame d’Ora- The Dolly Sisters, 1928-1929 via

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The Dolly Sisters via