The Eighteen Original Colors of Princess Phones
One of Western Electric's greatest marketing successes was the "Princess" phone. In the 1950's, many American families were just beginning to install more than one telephone in their homes. The "Princess" phone was a reaction to this trend. Introduced in 1959, it was advertised as "lovely" and "graceful" to directly appeal to women and teenage girls. It was the first phone designed specifically to appeal to this niche market.
One of the contributing factors to this success was 'colors'. It was felt by the princess's designers that a second phone would most likely be placed in a bedroom rather than hallway or entryway as was the most common phone locations of that era. Matching a room's color decor is a lot more important to a bedroom's decor than it is to a hallway, and basic black just would not do. So the rotary dial princess was introduced in five colors - white, rose pink, light beige, aqua blue, and turquoise. By 1963 four more colors where added - black, moss green, pastel yellow, and light gray. Ivory and cherry red were added in 1967, and gold became the final color option in 1971. Touch-tone princess's also had a clear color. In 1984 AT&T reintroduced the 'Signature Princess' with the addition of - teal blue, slate blue, light blue, cameo green, and peach.
Today, as old phone collecting becomes more and more popular, many collectors are specializing in accumulating all the colors of Princess phones. There may only be eighteen of them but some can be quite daunting to find. For some of the rarer colors like, like cherry red, competition can be active when they appear at on line auctions.
Here are photos of some of the colors. Good luck locating all of them.
One final note on collecting Princess phones by colors. There are a host of companies and sellers that are offering "retro" Princess phones. Some even match the original colors, others are making their own colors. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING WRONG WITH PURCHASING A "NEW" RETRO PRINCESS - AS LONG AS YOU KNOW THAT IS WHAT YOU ARE GETTING! AND PAY ACCORDINGLY! Don't pay vintage phone prices for a new phone. Learn the difference.
According to experts, old phone prices are expected to increase.
Perhaps you should Invest in some yourself, -- you'll be glad you did!
eBay Old Phone Auctions
_Old Phone Store - MAIN SWITCHBOARD