20th Century Fashion Resources
by Lanajean Vecchione


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Roaring Twenties
Twenties fashions flattered boyish figures and hid the female form. Dresses were sleeveless, lacked waistlines, pulled over the head, and were banded or decorated at the hips. A crop of new designers rose to fame, including Patou, Molyneux and Le-Long. Schiparelli was introduced, while Lanvin and Poiret continued.


Web Sites | Books | Videos


Web Sites about 1920s Fashions and Culture

    Flapper Culture and Style

      This essay is illustrated with photos and describes flapper style and how it related to the jazz age. The career of influential flapper Louise Brooks is discussed, along with keys to getting a flapper look and links to related twenties fashion sites and other famous flappers.

    Timeline of Costume History - The 1920s

      This link list will tell you where else to go for twenties fashion information. It is simply the best place to conduct a search when there's little time.

    1920s-1930s Freeware Clip Art on Fashion

      Another page linked from the same site, this is nothing but free images of flapper hair, lingerie, and hosiery and other finery. Most of this comes off a CD ROM clip art disc, but it makes things easier to have the images pre-selected and ready to download for school or personal use.


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Books About 1920s Fashions and Culture

    Authentic French Fashions


    Everyday Fashions of the Twenties As Pictured in Sears and Other Catalogs
    by Stella Blum (Editor)


    Everyday Fashions 1909-1920 as Pictured in Sears Catalogs,
    Edited by Jo Anne Olian

      This volume features vintage Sears catalog pages. Loaded with black and white photos and line drawings, it as a quick, convenient visual reference that is easily found in bookstores.

    The 1920s (Fashion Sourcebooks)
    by John Reacock

      As a spin-off from John Peacock's highly successful 20TH CENTURY FASION, his new series of Fashion Sourcebooks looks at each decade separately. Along with detailed drawings, complete descriptions of each garment itemize various elements of style. A reference section charts the evolution of shapes and includes biographies of outstanding designers of the day.

    Fashions of the Early Twenties, The 1921 Philipsborn's
    by Philipsborn's

      This Chicago mail order company was a competitor to Sears. The Spring and Summer catalog has house dresses, "mourning" outfits and embe. This book offers a quick yet informative look at the most popular styles of the early twenties, including undergarments and accessories.

    Fashions of a Decade: The 1920s
    by Jacqueline Herald

      This quick reference book is part of a series that examines each decade's fashion news. There's plenty of full color photos and a biography of books for further reading, with top designers and historical events noted in a timeline.

    The Golden Age of Style: Art Deco Fashion Illustration
    edited by Julian Robinson

      A feast for the eyes, this 1976 book is still available in used bookstores and libraries. It is illustrated in full color and shows top designers who were influenced by the Art Deco movement in design, roughly spanning the years 1901-1939.

    Fashion in the Twenties and Thirties
    by Jane Dorner

      This is an excellent source that details the common looks of each decade with photographs and captions. This 1973 book has many rare illustrations and shows quirky items like early sportswear, bathing suits, wedding attire, and undergarments.

    Vintage Pattern Lending Library

      A collection of over 800 antique sewing and needlework patterns covering periods of 1870 - the late 1940s. Only members may check out patterns, but paying the fee allows free check out, discounts on pattern purchases, and the chance to check out more than one pattern at time. From the teen patterns include those from rare French fashion magazines and British fashion patterns. This is a fantastic idea.

    The Canadian Virtual Museum - Virtual Fashion Hat Exhibition

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Movies Displaying 1920s Style

Here are some films to help show how fashions of this decade looked and moved.


      This 1927 silent film features Clara Bow, a popular twenties actress who oozes flapper style with bobbed hair, bee sting lips and bold costumes. Following this movie, she was referred to as the "It" girl.

    Thoroughly Modern Millie

      This 1967 movie starring Julie Andrews was set in New York during the 1920s. It features flapper style clothing including bobbed hair, dropped waistline dresses, and tight fitting cloche hats.

    The Great Gatsby

      The 1925 novel written by F. Scott Fitzgerald was turned into a movie starring Robert Redford in 1974. This classic launched a new appreciation for twenties style and vintage clothing during the seventies. This movie shows twenties style for both men and women, especially evening wear.

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