Written by Nicole Sholly

Vowing to make something even more stupid (and sellable) than the Hula Hoop, Dane Love, Dick Miller and Don White used their art school training and Mad magazine-inspired humor to create Stupid, Inc., the world’s first novelty stationery company! Love, Miller, and White would go on to become distinguished giants of Indianapolis advertising.

Stupid, Inc. burned brightly from the late 1950s to the early 1960s. Its wacky product lines grew to include novelty matchbooks and aerosol sprays that sold thousands of units in North America and at high-end stores like Selfridge’s in the United Kingdom. The humor was juvenile but tinged with ennui and melancholic resolution — not your typical gag gifts!

Nearly forgotten, this issue documents a Mad Men-era chapter of Indiana’s design history that remains virtually unknown today. With more than 64 full color pages, it contains dozens of images and product designs that haven’t been seen in decades. Offset printed in Indiana on heavy weight uncoated stock; this is Stupid, Inc.