The only big fashion innovation popular enough to share the 1947 headlines with Dior's "New Look" involved the evolution in women's swimwear; most notably the Bikini. The attached single page article pertains to all the new fabrics being deployed in ladies beachwear and all their assorted coverups:
"Sand-and-sun fashions for this summer are perter and briefer than ever before. Although the typical bathing suit covers just about 2.5 square feet of a swimmer's anatomy, a costume-look for the beach is achieved with a companion cape, skirt of short coat... Favored fabrics are those made to ride the waves. Knitted wool shows up in both classic and unusual designs. Colors are softer and muted. Black and blue appear most often, with cider, gray and smudge the 'high-style' shades."
•Click here to learn about women's fashions from the Summer of 1934•
One Autumn evening in 1949, New York fashion model Anna-Lee Daniels and her gay boyfriend, Henry, took it upon themselves to demonstrate just how chic ladies' undergarments were becoming. Recognizing that the latest slips were so minimal in their design - appearing much like the dresses flappers were often seen wearing, it was decided that the two should step out for a night on the town - with young Anna-Lee sporting the slip, just to see if anyone was the wiser.
Like all stylish couples, they were accompanied by a magazine photographer who snapped them all evening long as the mismatched pair trotted from one swanky watering hole to the next. The captivating Miss Daniels was never denied entry anywhere - never asked to vacate a single gin mill; the duo knew they were on to something [probably not, it was 1949, after all].
"The shingle cut, the feather trim, the French Scissors cut or the cherub cut - no matter which you choose - a short hairstyle flatters your face.... When the American college girl first began to clip her long tresses, the general reaction was one of general horror. Now that the surprise has worn off, the various advantages of short hair become apparent: trim locks are cool, easy to take care of, smart looking and stylish."
Lilly Daché (1898 – 1989) was the most famous milliner of her era; before retiring in the late Sixties (when hats were finally shown the door) she had accomplished much in the realm of fashion - designing dresses, lingerie, gloves, bags, jewelry and hostess gowns. While in league with the Hollywood costume designer Travis Banton, her lids adorned many of the craniums of the most glamorous women ever to grace a movie screen.
With the exception of the broad-brimmed sun hat pictured in the attached fashion editorial, you will find that women's hats were growing smaller throughout the course of the Forties and they tended to sit farther back on the cranium, requiring hairdos that would accommodate and complement these creations.
The Sally Victor hat composed of red cherries took its inspiration directly from the bizarre, comical costumes worn by the actress Carmen Miranda. This fruit theme was typical of many post-war milliners. The six other hats in the piece were by two American designers: Lilly Dache and John-Frederics.
Click here to see what men's summer hats were like during this period.
Dusty, Peggy and Jean were just three of the co-eds that made up the six percent of American women who attended college in 1941 - and that's all that was required of them in order for the trio to sample fashion's latest wares and sound-off in the attached Fall fashion review. Go figure.