BOBBY PINS and hair winding rods

Bobby pins. They always seemed to be in the bottom of my mother's purse. She used them for all sorts of things, including in her hair. And once a stray bobby pin is lost in a drawer it may take years before it's found again. This isn't to say it won't be seen in the drawer, it's just that there are probably plenty other pins around so why go digging around for that particular pin.

The pins on these cards are probably as organized as I've ever seen these little tools. Put them in a drawer, box, or jar and they end up in all directions, stuck in and out of each other. Oh sure, I'm betting there are some very neat people who keep their pins organized all facing the same direction. Not me. Sometimes a stray one will stick upright keeping me from closing the box lid.

Hump Hairpin Mfg.Co_tatteredandlost

Not finding much online in my brief search for information about bobby pins or hair winding rods. But then, who really wants to read a lengthy history of a piece of bent wire?
The "bobby pin" came into wide use as the hairstyle known as the "bob cut" or "bobbed hair" took hold. This trend gained popularity in the 1920s, and the bobby pins kept the bobbed hair in place. A trademark on the term "bobby pin" was held for some decades by Bob Lépine Corporation of Buffalo, New York. A trademark infringement claim made by Bob Lépine against Procter & Gamble regarding their naming their home permanent product Bobbi was settled in the 1950s by a payment to Bob Lépine by P&G. The term is now in common usage and therefore is no longer a valid trademark.

In 1913, Hump bobbie pins are introduced by Cincinnati-born inventor-manufacturer Sol Harry Goldberg, 33, who has devised "humps" for hairpins to help them grip the hair and has founded the Hump Hairpin Manufacturing Co.

In 1915, the Hump Hairpin Mfg. Co. factory was built in the Prairie Avenue section of Chicago.
Curly Lox Products_tatteredandlost

A site called Ads by Dee is selling a vintage 1945 ad for the Hold-Bob pins seen above. This ad is from her site.


  1. They're a great invention. I never realized that they came in different colors to match the hair color. I can't say I ever saw a blond version.

  2. I actually do have a few of the blond ones left that I bought in the '60s. They were sort of successful color wise. They did look better than the jet black ones.

  3. I really like the art - no photographs for these ads, oh no!

  4. The kids in the ad remind me of a series of paper dolls done in the 1940s: Teen Town, High School Dolls, High School Paper Dolls.

    I have a cut set of the last one.

  5. Now, I haven't thought about bobby pins for years. You made me think of my mother. Thank you.

  6. My mom used them to make finger waves and hold them in place while her hair dried. And I can remember having five or six of them around my ponytail to hold in the stragglers that escaped.

    They also made great stingers!

  7. This is just the kind of stuff my dad has around his house. http://www.retrohound.com/tag/dads-place/ I love it.

  8. First off, thank you so much for passing along an award to my blog. I do so enjoy this blogging and being in touch with people I would otherwise never know existed! Such fun reading other blogs of people with like interests. Again, thank you! Now about the bobby pins - when I was in high school I used to "put my hair up" almost every night. Pincurls, remember them? Later rollers. Victim of the Shirley Temple days - thought everyone had to have curly hair. Oh my, beauty must suffer!

  9. I can remember doing pin curls on my mom's head when I was little, but never had to do them for myself because when I was young I had natural ringlets. Oh to have those ringlets back now.

  10. I have the Curlmaster with a blue winding rod and bobby pins on the cardboard holder. They belonged to my grandmother. =)