The Kellogg’s Twins
It was in Birmingham, UK, 1950, when my grandparents were approached by representatives of Kellogg’s to take part in an advertising campaign for Kellogg’s Cornflakes. The company was keen to feature identical twins for its newest advertising run in British newspapers and magazines. Diane (my mom) and Christine (my auntie) had somehow caught their attention.
One of the 1950 promotional photos taken by the Kellogg’s company for a British advertising campaign for Cornflakes. I had to ask my auntie who’s who as it was always so difficult to tell them apart. Mom is the girl sat on the arm of the chair on the right, and my auntie is on the left holding the book.
The family at breakfast, work and play
The twins were toddlers at the time when Kellogg’s made the approach. As well as photographs of the two of them at play they were also photographed with my grandparents at the family breakfast table. Kellogg’s also took photos of my grandfather ‘going to work on a good breakfast’ (he was a welder at the time after leaving the war as a Royal Marine deep-sea diver).
Whether or not all of the photos were used in publications is unknown. My grandparents passed away in 1994 and my mom in 2017. No magazines or newspapers containing images from the photo sessions have ever been found when going through their estates, but we did discover the two photographs that I’m sharing here today. My auntie, the only survivor from the session, says that the family were paid £80 for their work – the equivalent of well over £2,000 in today’s money according to the National Archives. She also has recollection of seeing an advert in one of the female periodicals of the time like Woman, Woman’s Own, Woman’s Realm.
The second of the two 1950 promotional photos taken by the Kellogg’s company for a British advertising campaign for Cornflakes. Again I had to ask my auntie which twin was which. From left to right is my auntie, standing next to her my grandmother, seated is my grandfather, and next to him is my mom. My auntie tells me that no milk was allowed to be poured over the Cornflakes as it would have made them too soggy and spoiled the photo effect. I love the big, round teapot, and the sugar bowl, and I’m guessing that’s a jar of marmalade next to all those rounds of toast.
The hunt continues
It’s a joy for me to at last lay eyes on two of the photos from a story that had taken on somewhat mythical proportions over time in our family. It’s also a joy for me to publish them here at The Vintage Toy Advertiser – a website that has vintage advertising at its core. The joy will only be enhanced by discovering an actual advert one day in an original magazine. Alas, frequent research attempts over the years have turned up nothing, However, with the continued effort of individuals and organisations uploading photographic content to archives and social media sites, you never know, one day!
It’s a twin-thing
My mom and my auntie aren’t the only twins to have been courted by Kellogg’s. It seems the well-known breakfast brand has a fondness for featuring twins in advertising, even as recently as in 2017 when another set of Birmingham twins, in fact two sets of Birmingham twins were featured in Cornflakes television adverts.
I found these three ads online while researching for this post. The first two are cited as 1948, and the third as 1960s.
Image courtesy of etsy.com
Image courtesy of Magazinesadsandbooks.com
Image courtesy of Advertisingarchives.co.uk
Edit 03 March 2021 !!!!
Stop the press!
Finally we have some adverts turn up!
Thanks to my super sleuth eldest cousin, several adverts published in the UK and Northern Ireland in January 1951 have been discovered! Brilliant to see these at last, as well as the image of my Grandad ‘at work’ welding which my auntie told me about. Sadly, my aunt didn’t stick around long enough to see these print images, as she passed away in 2019.
The Belfast Telegraph 15 January. 1951.
kelloggs Cornflakes advert Waight family. Belfast Telegraph 15 Jan 1951.
To see the other images and for the full story on this find, go to my latest post here
Image sources for the 3 Kellogg’s twins adverts: Magazines, ads & books store. Retro Reveries. The Advertising Archives.
Updated March 2021 with Kellogg’s newpaper advert of Waight family.