Sunday, March 19, 2017

Fashions of 1940's

I have a renewed interest in WWII and 1940's fashion styles.
I've taken to watching "Bomb Girls" on Netflix--I must tell you
this is fascinating for me--so much I didn't think about during
In the small town of Fredericksburg, Texas (which is our second home) there is a fabulous
museum--National Museum of the Pacific War.  This past weekend we watched a
battle re-enactment of one of the battles--it's a sight to be seen and recognized!
Anyway, back to the Museum--there is a free exhibit of 1940's fashions--another
eye opening exhibit of what folks endured during those harsh times.

This dress is a patriotic fashion--Blue polka dot dress with red belt,
simply dressed demonstrated the wearer's duty to wartime conservation
To wear patriotic colors, like blue and red, further embodied American values

This is a two piece blue wool suit, called Victory Suit, represented
sacrifice and duty.  The slender fitted suit conserved materials by forgoing pleats 
and patch pockets.  There was some style in the design details.
The Victory Suit dominated the 1940's American fashion scene that
they came to be viewed as civilian uniforms

What were the limitations on fashions?  The orders were L-85:  L referred to 
civilian production; 85 applied to women and children and
L-73 was designed for men's garments.
L-85/73, issued in 1942,  grew out of a pact between the government and the American
fashion industry.  This law controlled the amount of material used in civilian clothing.
It mandated maximum measurements and outlawed excess pleats and even cuffs.
With this law outlawing major design changes, it encouraged maintaining the 1930's trim and 
narrow figures.

There were several other restrictions too: 
L-90--reduced elastic for girdles, bras--so much outcry, the restriction
deemed undergarments essential!

L-119 restricted fabric in sleepwear

K-171 restricted cosmetic lines due to ingredients

L-217 restricted leather for shoes:  it dicated six colors for women's
shoes and only two colors could be used in each shoe

Come back tomorrow for more on 1940's fashions

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