1920s Historical Images
Attitudes towards fashion were greatly influenced by the effects of The First World War. Official figures put British deaths at 765,399 this created a surplus of women of adult age who’s prospects of marriage and traditional security had been greatly diminished.
This radical change in women’s lives meant freedom to choose lifestyle, increased job prospects and the knowledge of the need to be self supporting for the rest of their lives.
These changes effected all social classes whether a ”flapper” so called because of their short skirts, bobbed hair, love of imported American ”jazz” music and distain for traditional acceptable behaviour or, the upmarket ”bright young things” who’s wild parties and nightclubbing antics rocked the foundations of the establishment and found themselves the subject of many newspaper articles in the 1920’s.
This period between the two world wars is often considered as the foundation of modern design and the golden age of French fashion because of the abundance of quality French dress designers like Jean Patou, Jeanne Lanvin, Coco Channel and Paul Poiret.
The length of hem lines changed under their guidance, as did the style of hair and the wearing of makeup and hats (even in summer).
Apart from the designers, American film makers had ahuge influence on fashion with movie stars like Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford and Louise Brooks all icons of the era. To look like their favourite film stars was the aim of many young women.