The 1930s will always be rememeberd for its Hollywood glamour, epitomized by elongated bias-cut dresses. New fabrics encouraged designers to experiment with new designs. The silhouette was more important than details or embellishments. Dresses were cut to follow the natural line of the body and accentuate the female figure. Shoulders and backs were exposed for the first time. Bias-cuts, that clung to every curve, and halternecks became very popular.
Although the great depression in 1929 meant that designers had to work with cheaper fabrics. Most women could not afford expensive dresses of past decades, while movie idols such as Katharine Hepburn and Bette Davis represented glamour they could only dream of.
Tuesday, 31 July 2012
Saturday, 28 July 2012
Fur: Fur coats or trimmed with fur were popular. Many had a single big button while others were wrapped around, they would have wide cuffs and fell to the knee.
Velvet: Velvet was used in jackets, wraps and dresses; this material was part of the style of opulence and the luxury of art deco style.
Fringing: Evening dresses with fringing were very popular with flappers in the 1920s.
Style russe: Chanel's early 1920s Russian style, attributed to her liason with Russian grand Duke Dmitri, consisted of tunic shapes, fur trimmings and embroideries. This look reflected the influx of Russians to Paris after the revolution. 'Style Russe' would be revisited by many designers, such as Saint Laurent's 'Russian revolution' in the mid-1970s.
Dropped waist: Curves and the hourglass figure was out and belts, sashes or ties were worn around the hips. The waist disappeared to create the fashionable straight look beloved in the 1920s.
Trousers: Trend-setting women in the 1920s would wear silken pyjamas and sailor pants for early evening or as fashionable resort wear.
Bare backs and bias cuts: Cut on the bias, thee new body hugging dresses seemed to spiral around the body and moved with the wearer. Backless dresses, with or without trains, began to make an appearance later in the 1920s.
Le garconne look: A new androgyny accompanied the flapper era, women wore short hair and straight loose dresses that revealed bare arms.
: Part of the le garconne look, was very popular with flappers who defied the older generation by bobbing their long locks and dancing the Charleston.
Cloche hats: A fitted, bell-shaped hat (cloche is the french word for bell.) They were made especially popular in the 20s. Worn low on the forehead, with the wearer's eyes only slightly below the brim. In later years, a summer cloche might be made from sisal or straw. Cloches could also be made of beads or lace for evening wear, for cocktails, dancing or even for bridal wear.
Finger waves: Very fashionable with most people in the 20s and early 30s, made popular by flappers.
Friday, 13 July 2012
Signature Flapper elements:
- Uneven split hems or handkerchief points that are longer at the back.
- Egyptian and art-deco inspired motifs.
- Visible seam decoration and double seams.
- Diagonal lines and asymmetric trimmed necklines.
- Pockets, buttons and belts. Pleated panels on skirts and knife pleats.
- Day dresses belted around the hips
- Low cut necklines and backs with thin straps and narrow trailing scarves that were sometimes attached to dresses.
Friday, 6 July 2012
By 1924 flappers were as known for their reckless behaviour smoking and putting makeup on in public as for their style. They would tape up their breast to achieve a boyish and youthful look without any curves. This new silhouette was straight up and down like a board and became known as 'le garçonne' (the flapper.)
Waistlines dropped dramatically in 1925. By 1927 it disappeared altogether and the hem had risen an outrageous 15 inches to just below the knee.
Flapper dresses were loose, straight and sleeveless, with arms, legs and backs exposed for the first time. The short shift dress, fell straight from the shoulder to just below the knee dominated the mid to late 20s.
For daywear the three-piece jersey suit was a must, including a blouse with a patterned cardigan or Chanel style cardigan-jacket was teamed with a narrow pleated skirt. Day dresses were simple with details like horizontal tucks or bias-cut panels.
|Coco wearing Chanel jacket|
|'20s sleeveless rayon|
or silk bias cut dress
|Close up of bias cut|
Monday, 2 July 2012
The 20s was the beginning of the media age. People got ideas from the radio, copying films or reading fashion magazines such as Vogue or vanity fair.
The coats were heavy, the shirts were sleeveless and the neckline was low. The first sweaters and pleated skirts were in the shops. It was all about bows, beads and flowers. Snuff boxes, long pipes, jewellery with pearls, cloche hats and short haircuts "a la garçonne were all very popular.