Posts Tagged ‘Women’s Fashion’

The Period Frock

August 22, 2012

The Bee (Danville, Virginia) Jan 19, 1927

The robe de style, as the French call the picturesque period frock, has been the easiest vehicle for exploiting the flounce ideas, and the great houses have turned out some bewitching models of the sort this summer, some hinting vaguely at 1830 models though far from all suggestion of crinoline, many reminiscent of the Grand Monarque and his court or Marie Antoinette’s days.

The Washington Post (Washington, D.C.) Aug 6, 1911

San Antonio Express (San Antonio, Texas) Mar 28, 1926


Period frocks, those charmingly youthful models with little bodices and wide, full skirts, have not by any means been relegated to the background. They are, if anything, more intriguing than ever, for they reveal a distinct Spanish influence which makes for certain picturesque qualities. Not the least interesting of these frocks are those which have an overdress of black Chantilly lace over a slip of satin which is a rich valencia pink in shade. Others of the same beautiful pink tone are flounced with black lace and the effect is enchanting.

However, the period frock is distinctly the costume of youth. While youth may be a matter of actual years, in modern days it frequently is a state of mind aided and abetted by all the arts of the modiste, the hairdresser and the beauty specialist. At all events, youthful contours are essential to the successful wearing of these piquant costumes.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader (Davenport, Iowa) May 10, 1925

Kingston Daily Freeman (Kingston, New York) Aug 17, 1927

The period frock, a headliner for spring, is no longer confined to the young set. Matrons are constantly demonstrating that one need not be overly slender to wear these frocks with distinction.

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) May 14, 1928

San Antonio Light ( San Antonio, Texas) Jun 6, 1929

Ladies in Shorts

August 1, 2012

Images from Motor Life Blog


Ladies in Shorts


Don’t know about your town, but in our town the shorts-measuring brigade has begun its pleasant duties. (This is as much a part of summer as sunstroke and poison oak.)

For those of you with weightier preoccupations than the length of ladies’ shorts, let me recap summer’s folly: Come the heat and stupidity of the dog days, certain members of the pretty sex climb into garments calculated to expose their lower extremities to a high degree. That is, girls wear shorts.

Shorts shock that portion of the populace that doesn’t look good in same. And they pelt the police department with shrill cries of pique.

So the constabulary looks forward to the annual heat waves as more fun and less work than a bank robbery.

*          *          *

WOMEN ARE SAID to be vain. That’s not so. One look at a few shorts-garbed dumplings trotting about the supermarket on varicosed, knobby and quite unleg-like legs is sufficient to convince us otherwise. Vanity, my eye!

These dames are bereft of all pride, caution — even hope. They have looked in that triple mirror, shuddered, and decided the weather is too hot to contemplate such a formidable problem. With a skill born of years at wriggling into a 10-way stretch girdles, they make size 14 shorts do the work of size 20.

Then they buy some more groceries. (Studying up for size 44.)

*          *          *

ON THE SHORTS QUESTION, doubtless the etiquette authorities bemuse themselves with such refinements as appropriateness, taste, and condition of servitude. But the cops and I are more direct in our approach to the basic issues involved. They measure garment; I maintain they should measure the wearer.

If milady toddles abroad exhibiting legs more suitable to the circus than to Main street, I say clap her in irons. Let the judge sentence her to  30 days on a 600-calorie diet. And when she measures up to less than 120 pounds, permit the wearing of the shorts.

What about the varicose department? Black lace hosiery as on chorus girls. Leg make-up as in bottles. Or maybe a dress — as a last resort.

Hammond Times (Hammond, Indiana) Jul 17, 1956

Midsummer Folly

July 27, 2012

Midsummer Folly

Dressed to kill
Applies to those
Who in midsummer
Wear winter clothes.

— Helen Van Dusen


Edwardsville Intelligencer (Edwardsville, Illinois) Jan 16, 1948

Expecting Snow?

Nice for fall, but for now, uh-uh.

Edwardsville Intelligencer (Edwardsville, Illinois) Jul 20, 1948

What They’re Coming To

March 7, 2012


By Edgar A. Guest
Copyright 1926

I do not fret o’er knee length skirts
or rings within the ears
Which much resemble as they swing
those old-time chandeliers;
I see the pretty modern girls who
shock our ancient crew
But I have not the slightest doubt of
what they’re coming to.

They’re on their way, as long ago,
were those good wives of ours
To pots and pans and kitchen stoves
and food a man devours;
To making beds and dusting chairs, to
bassinettes and cribs
And tucking under little chins those
hand embroidered bibs.

These modern styles, which age deplores,
will little change their lives,
They’re on their was to men like us
to be their faithful wives;
They’re on their way to humdrum tasks,
to nights of anxious care
And to the endless duties borne
by women everywhere.

These frivolous and pretty things with
baubels in their ears
Will rule the houses of the land in just
a few more years;
They’re on their way to every hurt and
joy that we’ve been through;
And there is not the slightest doubt of
what they’re coming to.

Morning Herald (Uniontown, Pennsylvania) Mar 22, 1926

Woman’s Hard Won Freedom

January 18, 2012


Here’s one little old-fashioned girl that’s NOT going to wear corsets and long skirts no matter what happens!


We’ll have to admit we were wrong about the new fashions, they’re really VERY becoming!

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 24, 1929

Jean Harlow “Reckless” Paper Doll

September 8, 2010

Miss Harlow, one of the screen’s most individual artists, is shown here with some of the gowns and costumes she wears in “Reckless,” new MGM picture in which she is featured with William Powell. “The Girl From Missouri,” another picture in which she starred, was typically Harlow, the blonde enchantress being a Missouri product. When Miss Harlow brought her bewitching beauty and art to the screen, she also brought something new and different — an undefinable something that won her instant popularity and many ardent fans.

Brownsville Herald (Brownsville, Texas) May 19, 1935

The Jean Harlow Paper Doll

Fashion Notes

Three large flowers lend the only touch of color to this lovely evening dress. The gown otherwise, is simple, following the lines of the figure close to the knees where it flares becomingly to the floor.

For evening wear, Jean chooses this dress of graceful white chiffon which is featured by its novel use of fine pleating and scarf draped waist.

Black wool shot with gold metal threads is fashioned into this afternoon gown from the personal wardrobe of Jean Harlow. The gown features a split skirt and black and gold cord trimming. The hat is created of matching material and the white gloves have fringed cuffs.

A nautical sport suit of corded blue and white silk worn with dark blue polo shirt.

A stunning hostess gown of crimson velvet. The unusual fullness features in the bodice and skirt is an interesting fashion note. Long full sleeves are caught at the waist and the belt has a beautiful jeweled buckle.

Long flowing beach pajamas of orchid satin with dark purple sash, buttons and trim of the same material.

Brownsville Herald (Brownsville, Texas) May 19, 1935

The musical treat of 1935 has come to the screen in the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer musical extravaganza, “Reckless.”

Of first importance, the picture introduces Jean Harlow and William Powell as co-stars for the first time. The glamorous platinum star is seen as Mona Leslie, a dazzling Broadway dancer, who rises to great social and professional height, only to be plunged into the depths of scandal and disgrace by the mad act of her millionaire playboy husband.

Powell is seen as Ned Riley, the jovial sports promoter who walks side by side with Mona through her triumphs and tragedies and finally emerges as “best man.”

Franchot Tone ably handles the role of Bob Harrison, the millionaire husband and  others deserving of honorable mention are May Robson, as Granny; Rosalind Russell, as Jo Mercer; Hendy Stephenson, as the elder Harrison; Ted Healy and Nat Jendleton as Powell’s companions and little Mickey Rooney.

Hammond Times (Hammond, Indiana) Jul 10, 1935

Pin Backward My Skirts

July 21, 2010



BACKWARD, pin backward my skirts in their flight,
Make me small again, just for to-night.
a am so weary and my skirts so long,
Sweeping the pavements as I walk along,
Gathering the dirt from out of the street,
Looked at by every one that I meet.
Mother, dear mother, I know I’m a fright,
Pin back my skirts, mother, pin ’em back tight.

Mother, dear mother, the days are so warm,
And I’m tired of this dress I have on,
It is so clumsy and don’t fit me right,
Pin it back, mother, pin it back tight.
Now I’m ready, don’t I look sweet?
Smiling on all I happen to meet,
I’m in the fashion, so that is all right
Pin back my skirts, mother, pin ’em back tight.

Mother, dear mother, I know it’s a sin
To wear dresses that show off one’s limbs,
But what is a poor girl to do,
If all the world wears them she must wear ’em too.
It is only those who are thin that are afraid
To show off a form that is not well made.
You may laugh, but you know that I’m right,
Pin back my skirts, mother, pin ’em back tight.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Oct 23, 1875

1875 (Image from