Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Fashion Through The Ages - 1920s

Are you one of those people who can't tell between fashion from the 40s and fashion from the 80s?
Are you one of those people who classify anything that looks slightly vintage as from the 60s, without even knowing what fashion was like then?
I know many who are.

Not everything comes from the sixties. And not everything is vintage.

Here's a guide for the uninitiated, starting from the 1920s.

The 1920s
The 1920s was known as 'The Jazz Age'. This was the time when flapper culture was in vogue.

The flappers were seen as sort of a fashion iconoclast in the 20s. They were intelligent and brazen. They defied conventions of acceptable female conduct. They were the 'modern' girls of the 20s.

They sported short hair when every other woman traditionally kept her hair long.
They wore make-up in (gasp!) public.
They wore baggy dresses, exposing their arms and legs from knee down.

The slender flat chested tanned body and face of a 15 year old became the desired silhouette of the bright young things of the 1920s. Health and beauty clubs helped women refine their silhouettes whilst getting fitter and healthier.

Fashion Pointers
-dropped waistlines
-knee-length hems
-satin & floating fabrics
-loose dresses that draped on the body
-long sihouettes
-black and white
-cloche hats (below)

Some flapper dresses:

Bobbed Hair

Another very obvious fashion feature of this time period was "bobbed"
hair. It was first introduced in America during and just after World War I and popularized by society dancer Irene Castle. In 1914 she stunned impressed fashionable New York by appearing in a show with bobbed hair. She had acquired it on a European tour where she'd seen fashionable Parisians wearing it.

The impact of bobbed hair and all it was felt to represent was enormous. The popular media of the time is filled with jokes, stories, cartoons, songs, theatrical skits, newspaper articles, and short movies, about bobbed hair.

Irene Castle:

Fashion Icons of the 20s:

-Coco Chanel (bottome left)
-Louise Brooks (bottom right)

1920s revival by Hollywood celebrities:

And by Hollywood itself:

Chicago - the movie
Note the bob, the sequins, the dropped waist?

Buy the 1920s:

Try the Dior D'Trick line. Featuring black, whites and pearls, it is remniscent of old Hollywood glamour. (1920s!)

Dior D'Trick Jacquard Bag

Dior D'Trick Shoulder Bag

Dior Malice D Trick with Pearls