Evolution of the American Clothing Through the Decades

Topics: World War II, Great Depression, 19th century Pages: 3 (719 words) Published: March 3, 2013
Evolution of the American Clothing through the Decades

• In the 1930s, bigger was better, with doublebreasted suits, full-cut trousers, and tuxedos with tails setting the standard for how a gentleman should dress. Also: the dawn of shirtless sunbathing.

• 1930s boasted a return to femininity and Hollywood glamour was idolized. Evening gowns showed bias-cuts and diamante accents and were made of chiffon or velvet. For a more casual look in the thirties dresses were slim-cut and had wide shoulders and a belt around the waist. Real fur accents and floral prints were also popular during this era until World War II broke out and the glamorous look of the decade lost its luster.

• In the 1940s, war changes everything. The government restricts the use of wool, and singlebreasted jackets and cuffand pleat-free pants become the norm. Once the boys come home, big style roars back with wide lapels, spread collars, and roomy suits.

• During World War II, luxurious fabrics like wool, silk and nylon were highly regulated and women's skirts and dresses were often made of viscose and rayon. Skirts and dresses would also be made out of anything that could be found within a home (like curtains, nightgowns or bed sheets) due to the illegality of using excess fabric when making an outfit from about 1942 to 1947.

• In the 1950s, conservatism and conformity rule, with trim tailoring and similar accessories (hat, pocket square, cigarette, and martini) for just about everyone. Downtime sees the occasional glimpses of flair (shantung jackets, madras prints, Hawaiian shirts).

• With the economic boom in the 1950s, glamour become fashionable once again and A-line and pencil skirts were very popular form-fitting fashions. Dresses in the decade would often feature stylish ruffles or lace accents and were usually knee-length or tea-length.

• In the 1960s, the revolution arrives, with JFK's patrician formality giving...
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