Mary Wells Lawrence ad work

“The End of the Plain Plane”
Brancliff International Airlines
1965

 

Mary Wells Lawrence tackled the Braniff International Airlines campaign with Richard Rich and Stuart Greene when they were working under DDB. Harding Lawrence, the president of Braniff Airlines, wanted a new idea, an idea so big it would flood the news and all of America. Mary and her team traveled through all the airports on the airlines’ routes to get a better understanding of the flying experience. Mary realized that at that time airports and planes were essentially colorless, steel, and metal, all gray and boring. She saw opportunity in color and created a campaign that shoved everything colorful and new onto the airlines. Mary hired Emilio Pucci to completely redesign the fashion for the air stewardesses. Emilio Pucci was one of the strongest advocates in the world for color in women’s clothing. He created the “Air Strip”. Braniff Airlines usually flew their planes from colder climates to warmer climates. The new outfits allowed the stewardesses to strip off a piece of clothing the closer they got to warmer climates. The “Air Strip” became a sensation when the ads hit the Super Bowl. Alexander Girard redesigned the interiors of planes, terminal waiting areas, and check-in accessories. Everything was covered head to toe in colorful Mexican art to continue the revolution of color. Seven planes were painted each a different vibrant color that were warm, welcoming, and fun. The advertising that went with look was just as big. It became “The End of the Plain Plane”. It was a true statement, the Braniff campaign truly revolutionized airports and airlines to cater to the consumers and their flying experience.

                

This was the most major project in Mary Wells Lawrence’s life. It was a huge success that rocked America and changed a lot of agencies’ approaches to advertising especially for airlines. It introduced this creative, colorful way of tackling advertisements and it effectively reached the American population of rebellious Baby Boomers. It not only was one of Mary’s biggest successes, it also introduced her to her second husband: Harding Lawrence. After about a decade of struggling with her first husband Bert Wells, she finally settled down with a man she truly loves after achieving her dream of course. Braniff was a large milestone in Mary’s career because it gained her and her company so much fame that allowed her to successfully open up her own agency just a few years later.

 

Citations:

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2002/05/real-life-peggy-olson-mad-men-advertising