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Time Magazine Cover September 19, 1949 - Lisa Fonssagrives Fashion Model
September 19, 1949
Lisa Fonssagrives, the highest-paid, highest-praised high-fashion model in the business, considered by many of her colleagues the greatest fashion model of all time. (In 1949, at least)

In case you have come here looking for 1940s costume ideas, here are some 1940s costumes at!


Hankies for Sport

Another phase of the current fad for the girls to copy boys' fashions is found in handkerchiefs. For sports use there are being made women's Irish linen handkerchiefs with the hand-rolled hems and the corded borders so popular with the men. The only difference is in the size. The men's are 19 inches square while the women's are only 15 inches.

 Fashions of the Decade 1940s

Read more about 1940s Fashions in Fashions Of A Decade: The 1940s  (Hardcover) Chronicles clothing trends of the 1940s and the influence of World War II on styles of dress, availability of many fabrics, and the new ideas of designers at war. Author: Baker, Patricia. Published On: 1992/02/01. Language: ENGLISH Link to Book

For The Graduation Ball

Dear Pattie,
When you and your mother go looking for your new formal, remember this: Color counts much more than the way the dress is made these days, for nearly all the frocks in the stores are smart. Besides, you slender young girls of the teen age have no figure worries.

I'll tell you what looks striking with a very clear skin and brown hair and blue eyes - that's a fresh pink dress. And a heavy weight crepe will be a good fabric to choose.  But pink needs something to accent it, like a bit of gold braiding with jewels. See what you find and like. And remember this, you never can go wrong on a glorified shirt maker style.

Now, after the color, the next important thing is slippers and a gay doo dab for your hair and a pretty little evening bag. But you can't pick these until the dress is bought So write again.

About your Christmas pearls, indeed, you can wear them with sweaters. Every schoolgirl does this.

Mary Hampton, 1941

Knitting Fashions of the 1940s


Fashions of the 1940s

Late 1940s Christian Dior Haute Couture Evening Gown, model 00840 Vintage Dior to Die For

Late 1940s Rare Christian Dior Haute Couture Evening Gown, model 00840.

The strapless dress is made from blue-grey organza, and embroidered with iridescent sequins in the shapes of stripes and polka dots.

A whalebone bodice attaches to the full petticoat by a series of tiny snap buttons. Side closure with hooks. Made Of Silk.

Source: From the Long Live Christian Dior Spring-Summer YOOX Collection

I wish I could have told you how much this 1940s evening gown was selling for in summer of 2008 - but it was already sold by the time I found it.




1941 Coat-And-Dress Combination In Beige.

Left: This smart coat-and-dress combination is beige. The dress in crepe and the coat in wool. Brown woven-in plaid is featured on the jacket while the dress has radiating tucks on the yoke and large buttons. Sketched in a Kansas City shop. (1941)  

The Class Of 1948

Would you have a true picture of the class of 1948? This class of 119 sweet girl graduates has attained a height rarely, if ever before reached by any Girl's Latin School group. It has had the broadest influence in the shaping of senior classes and has affected the lives of many in this school by reason of its weightiness.

These surprising statements are supported by statistics which show that our class has a height of 669 feet; it has a waistline of 3,068 inches; and it weighs 14,757 pounds. No other senior class, moreover, has looked out on life with greater understanding; our aggregate shoe size is 846.

Yearbook Photo of girls in 1948

Such a class as this naturally consists of the most learned and vivid personalities that can be found in any group, if indeed a group equal to ours in any respect can be found.

1940 Fur-Trimmed Cloth Coats - Mink, Persian, Silver Fox From $35 - $68. True to the methods of compilers of statistics, we polled this unusual group in an effort to gain an insight into the innermost thoughts of our illustrious contemporaries and to discover what that phenomenon, the average senior, was like.

We learned that the average senior in the class of 1948 is 5'5" tall, and that her weight fluctuates between 123 and 128 pounds, the change to the latter figure invariably corresponding with a vacation.

She wears size 7A shoe, the perfect size for a modern young lady. Her eyes are brown, and her naturally straight brown hair is worn in curls, which infallibly disappear on rainy days. Our average girl prefers a gay time to a quiet  evening at home.


Winter Fashion East Coast 1948     


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  • COLOR IS INDIVIDUALITY! - Color runs rampant this season in sandals, pumps and sport shoes. And that will certainly satisfy your desire for individuality and smartness! North Carolina, May, 1942.
  • Fashion Sense - Hats and Hairdo

    Did you ever see a pretty girl perfectly turned out in tailored suit and hat but spoiling the whole effect with a burst-mattress style of hairdo? Or did you ever weep for the otherwise attractive maid who insisted on a mannish haircut even when wearing the most feminine and frilly of evening gowns?

    Girls who would be well-dressed remember that the hairdo should match the hat and the hat should complete the dress.

    There's a growing union between milliners and hairdresser. The milliners point out that it's no use to design a sleek and sophisticated hat for a lady who persists in a frowsy hairdo. And the hairdressers wail that their best efforts often are ruined when a customer tops off a modish coiffure with a hat dreamed up from a nightmare.

    One famous hairdresser, Antoine, has solved the grievous problem by designing hats and hairdos at one fell swoop. Many noted milliners, in desperation, now are advising their clients as to the general type of coiffure suitable for each new hat.

    Things to remember are that a tailored suit and severe hat call for a sleek coiffure, of the not-a-hair-out-of-place school. An exotic evening gown, on the other hand, should be matched in mood by a softly feminine hairdo. When you buy a new hat, be sure It matches your hairdo. Or else make the hairdo match the hat
    February 13, 1942

    Lana Turner Inspired Simulated Sapphire Earrings Lana Turner Inspired Simulated Sapphire Earrings. These earrings will help you "Step back into the golden age of gorgeous with this set of earrings inspired by silver screen starlet Lana Turner."

  • Meanwhile, Back in France



    Bathing Beauties in 1948

    Bathing Beauties circa 1948

    Voted best dressed of her class of 1948.

    Voted "Best Dressed" of her class of 1948. Boston, Massachusetts

    1940s Women's Suits
    Skirt length is below the knee, jacket is worn long - to below the hips, but is tailored at the waist. Shoulders are emphasized and padded or puffed at the sleeve.

    The Rag Industry - News

    "Do you think that New York's Fashion Futures" presentation will influence style trends really in this country, "and in this hemisphere?" was a leading question shot at Mayor LaGuardia of New York by one of the members of the alert style, radio and newsreel audience. "I certainly do," he shot back, with a twinkle in his eye. More than once the mayor emphasized the fact that he intended to make fashions available to all women, everywhere, even on farms and in rural districts. "The problem of manufacturing in this country as distinguished from designing clothes in Paris," he said, "is making clothes for more women, More than once he reiterated his conviction, "that we could produce more clothes, cheaper, better styled and above all, available to everybody at a low price. The Hammond Times, December 27th, 1940

    Vogue Fashion Magazine Cover - June 1947

    Blueprints of Fashion; Home Sewing Patterns of 1940s
      A Reverse Pump in Brown or Blue Linen with White Toe and Heel.A Reverse Pump in Brown or Blue Linen with White Toe and Heel, North Carolina, May, 1942. Price $7.95. More 1940s Shoes.

    Fabrics of the 1940s