Merchandising the postwar model house at the Parade of Homes
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The Parade of Homes began in 1948 as a novel form of sales merchandising and publicity. The model house, on display at the Parade of Homes, was a powerful advertising tool employed by postwar merchant-builders to sell modern design to a new market of informed consumers and second-time homeowners. Using House & Home as a primary source, I contextualize the postwar housing industry and the merchandising efforts of builders. Then, through an examination of the 1955 Parade of Homes in Houston, Texas, I analyze the early Parade of Homes events and the language of domestic modernism that they showcased.