1952 Nitey Night Sleepers Ad

Submitted by Douglas Wood February 19th, 2010
Certifikitsch Winner

Confirming that 1950’s housewives had WAY too much time on their hands, the caption for this 1952 magazine ad above reads, “Clever Mothers can trim Nitey Nite – sleepers into Angels, Devils, Tigers, Canaries… even into a Watermelon and a Radish– as seen at this birthday party.”

12 Responses to “1952 Nitey Night Sleepers Ad”

  1. Allee Willis

    Needless to say I would kill for those hats! The watermelon’s a little risky for me but the radish is stunning.

    The imperative question is do the Nitey Nites come with the hats? I can’t see how they don’t as without the hat who would know the radish was a radish? But how on earth those things are practical for kids to sleep in I’ll never know.

    Has anyone ever heard these called “sleepers” before? They were longjohns in Detroit when I was coming up.

    • windupkitty

      this is unbelievable…..i’m in tears!!!!!!!
      seriously, what little boy dreams of being a watermelon for any occasion (the least of all going to bed!) and yep, i grew up with them being called “sleepers”…i can still hear my mom saying “honey go put your sleeper on”…of course ours were never that cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      they were made of the most unbreathable polyester, zipped up the front, had thin plastic feet and were highly flammable…..when you grew out of them, they were really uncomfortable! my mom would just tell us to pull up the sleeves like that was going to help with the length of the thing!!! :D my little sister had a weird iron-on patch of of rainbow duck on hers (the fabric melted where is was ironed on…could that have been a clue that kids should never wear them!?)…mine was plain…what a rip off!

  2. Douglas Wood

    In answer to your questions: no, the Nitey Nites don’t come with the hats. I’m not even sure they come with the “seeds” design and leafy feet. Further copy on the ad reads, “Write for the illustrated booklet telling you how to make children’s costumes. Enclose 10¬¢ for mailing. Dept. L, Nitey Nite Sleepers, Perry, N.Y.” Some other fun copy: “The new fabric is the finest ever made to cozy your cherubs. Knit of pure, virgin cotton it’s softer… fleecier… and there’s wear in every thread. All gay songbird colors are absolutely sudfast.”

  3. Mark Milligan

    I just keep coming back to that picture to have another grin! My first thought was that if my Mom stuck me in one of those get-ups there’s no way I’d be ready for nightey-nite before the test pattern lit up on the Crosley!
    Now I see they’re costumes, but even then-that watermelon hat is Carmen Miranda-kids! Love it.

  4. Douglas Wood

    I had the same reaction. And these aren’t even Halloween costumes– the text mentions a birthday party! I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around what kind of mom could conceive of this. But then, of course, this was way before mood-stabilizing drugs like lithium.

    • windupkitty

      hahaahha!!! the idea that these were conceived pre-mood stabilizing drugs is hilarious and makes perfect sense! i’m so glad you mentioned the text refers to a birthday party…i couldn’t figure out why there was a cake (that poor radish is about to stick his finger into the flame of the candle),and why the anthropomorphic watermelon was blowing into a pom-pom….their mom was creative,indeed, but boy was she nuts!!!!!