Fre-Mor Mfg. Corp.
The March 1955 issue of Handbags & Accessories featured an extensive article on Plastic in handbags. The Fre-Mor bag was included. 1955Plastics
On page 40 of the March 1955 issue is this chatty bit of information on the Fre-Mor line.
The same issue includes this display ad for Fre-Mor.
This evidence is a bit unexpected. Kate Dooner, in her book "Plastic Handbags Sculpture to Wear" page 9 states "In 1951, Jewel Plastic Company and Fre-Mor Manufacturing Corp, merged for create Llewellyn Inc and the Llewellyn Plastic bag was formed." But obviously, Fre-mor continued to make bags under their own label after 1951. Was this a merger or did Fre-Mor buy out Jewel Plastic or Plastic Jewel, add a line known as Llewellyn and continue to produce bags under their own name? I suspect the later is the case. NEITHER is correct LlewellynInc
6/28/2007: A new and knowledgeable contact has set the record straight on this "merger," at long last. The only child of Ferdinand (Fred) A. Metter has documents proving Mr. Metter and Mortimer Edelstein formed Fre-Mor as a partnership in 1949. In 1951, the partnership was dissolved and Morty Edelstein left Fre-Mor to become part of the newly formed Llewellyn. Fre-Mor continued in business with a new partner, Lester Woods of Universal Trading Company.
Accessory market round-up
"Suedes, jewels, corde, leathers and tapestries are interestingly used as trims on plastic bags in various shapes. All at Fre Mor, 347 5th Ave. A group of shapes is done in quilted gold leather covered with vinyl. These are small bags, mostly for evening. They are satin lined and fitted and there are accessories to match. A lucite-type handle tops a clear vinyl pouch with black suede cutouts in a floral design. A group of bags to retail from $18.95-$35 features original oil painting panels, framed with beads, and set on to laminated plastic bags." (Handbags & Accessories June 1956, page 58)
Laminate vinyl was such a 50s thing and so many classic Mid-Century Modern looks relied on this new material for their trendy glamour. This full page ad on page 6 of "Handbags & Accessories," August 1956 highlighted same swatches by Vitex Plastics VitexPlastics whose distinctive fabrics embodied this important 50s trend. As an example, a Fre-Mor pinstripe laminate vinyl pouch bag with clear lucite handle!
"They've been wonderful for spring. There's been some question about their use for fall. We say they can be even greater for fall. We have the most exciting, the most luxurious, the most fashionable collection of designs for fall and the early cruise season that you've ever seen. They're available in blacks and fall colors for immediate delivery. They're processed in continuous clear lamination. They can make your line! We invite your immediate inquiry on the patterns shown. We have many more. Call, write, wire for information on the most exciting new ideas to appear in the handbag industry in many a day. Be among the first to feature and profit with Vitex Plastics."
D00063: Fantastic Fre-Mor metal filigree bag was sold unfinished, designed to customize with your own fabric. It has waited over 60 years unfinished. I have completed the bag with vintage Lame' fabric in a Mod design in pinks and silvers, light and dark. The brief case style frame is edged in elaborate silver filigree and closes with two silver spheres. The bag has the original Fre-Mor paper hand tag as well as the fabric label inside. This a highly collectible bag, since Fre-Mor is one of the parent companies of Llewellyn handbags. Excellent unused condition. Measures 7 x 2 1/4 x 5 inches.
SOLD for $90 in 2004.