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This suit was made by Bernard Weatherill during the British fashion boom of the s and is a good example of the styles of that period.

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Though couture clothing like this was out of most women's reach, it inspired more affordable fashions. Coco Chanel championed comfortable and practical clothing for women. This evening dress, obviously designed for the summertime, is a remarkable example of Chanel's skills in developing elegant sportswear for the evening, creating a simple yet stunning evening dress for the sporty, modern woman of the s.

The navy, red and white ribbon of grosgrain makes reference to Chanel's own love of sailing, and her inspiration from sports. Evening ensemble dress and coat Charles James London Bias-cut satin dress , with fur Museum no. This dress and coat are typical of glamorous s eveningwear. The dress is a simple, figure-skimming sheath dress made from satin, and the fur coat accentuates the shoulders. Couturier clothing like this was custom-made for each individual client from the finest materials.

Couture influenced the silhouette and style of more affordable fashions, however, and fur was brought within the reach of many women as large fur collars or as stoles or wraps, which were all highly fashionable during the s.

This suit sums up the s silhouette with its sleek lines, nipped-in waist, square shoulders, and straight, pleated skirt. Tailor-made outfits were practical yet smart and well suited to town or country wear. Suits like this would have been worn for daywear and for travelling, and would have been worn with a hat and a fashionable fur stole. Evening ensemble dress and coat Peter Russell London Coat Interlined with undyed wool and lined with silk faille; Dress Pleated pale pink matt crepe, embroidered with beads and diamante Museum no.

Couturier clothing like this was custom-made for each individual client, and was out of most women's reach. However, couture influenced the silhouette and style of more affordable fashions, and dressmakers everywhere followed its lead. The prevalent s style was the bias cut, in which fabric is cut diagonally to the grain of the fabric, creating garments that skimmed over the body's curves.

The s silhouette is therefore slinky and close-fitting and the line was simple and uncluttered. Towards the end of the s, however, the fashionable silhouette altered slightly and the prevailing streamlined shape was gradually replaced by wider shoulders and constricted waists.

Also, designers introduced embellishments like bold prints and surface decorations in an attempt to break away from the minimal adornment of the bias-cut line. This elegant evening ensemble was designed by London couturier Peter Russell. An almost identical version made in lamé was featured in Vogue magazine, where it was described as an ideal presentation dress. Evening dress Paul Poiret London Satin and silk velvet, trimmed with diamante buckles Museum no.

This elegant gown is typical of s evening attire. Made in bias-cut ivory satin, it plunges at the back, clings to the torso and gently flares below the thigh. The cascade of velvet ribbons and diamanté buckles focuses attention on the back. During the First World War and through to the s many women entered the work force for the first time, and wanted to reflect their new independence in the way they dressed.

They wore practical clothing that was suitable for work, and many daring modern women took to wearing trousers. Many continued to sport short bobbed hair as they had in the s.

This portrait is of Ilse Bing , one of several leading women photographers in the inter-war period. Born into a Jewish family in Frankfurt, she initially pursued an academic career before moving to Paris in to concentrate on photography. Evening ensemble Elsa Schiaparelli London Rayon marocain, backed with satin, and embroidered with various gilt threads, beads and diamantes Museum no. Towards the end of the s the fashionable silhouette altered, and the prevailing streamlined shape was gradually replaced by wider shoulders and a more fitted waist, foreshadowing the silhouette that was to dominate the clothes of the s.

This ensemble by couturiere Elsa Schiaparelli features wide padded shoulders with embroidered leaves around the collar to further emphasise the exaggerated shape. Evening ensemble dress and jacket Mainbocher Paris Silk crepe, embroidered with sequins jacket Museum no. The prevalent s style was the bias cut.

Bias cutting where fabric is cut diagonally to the grain of the fabric , created garments that skimmed over the body's curves. The s silhouette is therefore slinky and close-fitting and the line was simple and uncluttered, with few trimmings or accessories.

Simple dresses were teamed with short capes, boleros or jacket, and sequins were a favourite way of adding glamour to an outfit. This straight-cut jacket is similar to the one worn by the Duchess of Windsor Mrs Wallis Simpson in her engagement photographs taken by Sir Cecil Beaton She wore it over a long white crêpe dress with a sequin sash matching the jacket American Vogue magazine, 1 June , pages , British Vogue, 9 June , pages Beaton's photographs of Mrs Simpson in her Mainbocher ensemble were particularly successful.

Its stark, simple lines suited her elegant, uncluttered style. The bride wears a typical s wedding dress, which features a long train, high-neck and long sleeves, with rather squared shoulders. The wreath is decorated with wax orange blossoms on wire stems, and was a popular wedding accessory of the decade. Day dress and cape Madeleine Vionnet About Paris Woollen jersey, cape fastened with chrome clips, and leather belt Museum no.

The dress is cut on the bias - a prevalent s trend, creating garments that skimmed over the body's curves. Simple dresses were teamed with short or long capes, or boleros. Evening dress Madeleine Vionnet About Paris Black silk velvet, with two asymmetric silk georgette streamers Museum no.

Haynes and Mrs M. Steichen photographed , ca. Here you can see a dress made of clinging, extravagant and luxurious fabrics. The models' hair is styled close to the head with gentle 'finger waves' along the hairline. The prevalent s style was the bias cut, in which fabric is cut diagonally to the grain of the fabric, creating garments that skim over the body's curves.

The s silhouette is therefore slinky and close-fitting. The line was simple and uncluttered, with few trimmings or accessories. Towards the end of the s, the fashionable silhouette altered slightly and the prevailing streamlined shape was gradually replaced by wider shoulders and constricted waists, as seen here.

Also, designers introduced bold prints and colours in an attempt to break away from the minimal adornment of the bias-cut line. As a result of the war there were severe fabric shortages, which lasted until the end of the decade. Clothes were made with a minimum of fabric, few pleats and no trimmings. Skirts were a little below the knee and straight, worn with boxy jackets and broad, padded shoulders.

Many men and women wore uniforms. From onwards some clothes were made under the government Utility Scheme that rationed materials.

They are identifiable by a 'CC41' stamp, which is an abbreviation of the 'Civilian Clothing Act of '. During the war, accessories were important because of their relative affordability; tall platform shoes or sandals, and tall flowery hats were fashionable. Hair was worn long, with stylised waves and rolls on top of the head. In , Christian Dior introduced his 'New Look', which revolutioniseds fashion. Skirts became longer and fuller, and boxy shoulders were softened to become sloping.

Waists were cinched and hats grew wide and saucer shaped. During the war, most men wore military uniform of some kind. Hair was short at the back and sides, and most men were clean shaven.

Men in civilian clothing were often dressed in lounge suits with broad shoulders, with wide trousers belted high at the abdomen. After many men leaving the armed forces were issued with a 'de-mob' suit, consisting of shirt, tie, double-breasted jacket and loose fitting trousers. The lounge suit dominated men's dress from the s onwards.

It was worn at events and in places where in previous decades more formal attire would have been required. By s men were wearing lounge suits with a pullover in place of a waistcoat. Pullovers were previously worn for informal and sporting occasions but they gradually became integrated into mainstream fashion. The Duke was acknowledged internationally as the leader of men's fashion.

He rebelled against the stiff formality of dress and became famous for his casual style. Using the best London and New York tailors, he continued to be adventurous in his love of bright colour, strong texture and bold pattern. The Duke gave this suit to Sir Cecil Beaton, who was then collecting fashionable dress for his exhibition, 'Fashion: The Utility scheme was devised to share and conserve scarce resources, whilst creating practical and stylistically appealing clothing.

With its double-breasted cut, peaked lapels and wide straight-legged trousers, this suit is typical of the period. The breast pocket is stay stitched rather than interlined to economise on fabric. The pocket bags and waistband facings are made in cheap quality cotton. Christian Dior launched his couture house on 12 February and became an overnight sensation. His voluptuous first collection featured hand-span waists above enormous skirts.

It was christened on the spot by Carmel Snow, editor of American Harper's Bazaar, as the 'New Look', and was the antithesis of masculine wartime fashions. This jacket demonstrates the exaggerated New Look silhouette. The jacket is moulded into an hourglass shape, which is helped by wads of padding and horsehair around the front of the hips. The shoulders are rounded, the bust full, and the waist tiny.

Day dress Edward Molyneux , designer for the Utility Scheme London Rayon crepe, with matching composition buttons Museum no. It may have been designed by Edward Molyneux.

The simplification and economy of material match the conditions laid down by the Board in relation to the manufacture of civilian clothing during the Second World War of Then, both hand-crafted and mass-produced tailoring was as important as it is today.

But, despite the best efforts of the fashion designers to be inventive without wasting precious fabric, there was a very limited choice. The Utility Scheme was introduced by the Board in to ensure that low- and medium-quality consumer goods were produced to the highest possible standards at 'reasonable' prices.

These standards complied with restrictions and rationing of raw materials. The word 'Utility' was applied to garments made from Utility cloth, which was defined in terms of minimum weight and fibre content per yard.

Utility clothes were usually identified by a distinctive double crescent CC41 Civilian Clothing label. When offering this day dress to the Museum in August , Sir Thomas Barlow explained that it conformed 'in simplification and economy of material to the conditions laid down by the Board of Trade in relation to the manufacture of civilian clothing'.

This is a good example of a Utility suit. During the Second World War both hand-crafted and mass-produced tailoring was as important as it is today. But, despite the best efforts of fashion designers to be inventive without wasting precious fabric, there was a very limited choice. The Utility Scheme was introduced by the Board of Trade in to ensure that low and medium quality consumer goods were produced to the highest possible standards at 'reasonable' prices.

These standards complied with restrictions and the rationing of raw materials. This is a good example of a Utility Suit. It may have been designed by Victor Stiebel. The bloused jacket with square, padded shoulders closely resembles the battledress top of an army uniform. It is Board of Trade pattern no. Dior offered the glamour and romance of full skirts and nipped-in waists to women who were tired of utilitarian clothes with boxy silhouettes, mannish square shoulders and practical short skirts.

This intricately cut afternoon dress of black wool, named 'Maxim's', was worn with a black tulle cartwheel hat, long black gloves and simple black court shoes. To emphasise the bust, a large silk velvet bow was set into the low, square neckline and the waist was compressed by a cummerbund-style lower bodice. A heavy ribbed silk petticoat supports and defines the skirt. The dress fastens with a zip down the back.

When offering this jacket and skirt to the Museum in August , Sir Thomas Barlow explained that 'they conform in simplification and economy of material to the conditions laid down by the Board of Trade in relation to the manufacture of civilian clothing'. This curvaceous suit has the small waist and wide, padded hips inspired by Christian Dior's instantly popular 'New Look' collection. Though, the square shoulders recall earlier styles and show that this lady may have resisted a complete change in style.

Hardy Amies skilfully overcame the continuing shortages and regulations governing the availability and use of materials in the early post-war period. This superbly tailored double-breasted jacket has a nipped-in waist and pockets with deep flaps which curve over and accentuate the hips.

The long bias-cut skirt has soft pleats at the front right and the back left, which creates a flattering garment that also economises on fabric. Pair of shoes Shaftesbury Shoes Ltd manufacturers s Great Britain Plaited leather straps, leather-covered platform sole with circular inset layers and leather-covered heel Museum no.

This pair of shoes is typical of the mid s, during which time it was fashionable to wear tall platform shoes. Because of war-time shortages, the platform soles were often made out of cork. In keeping with the fashion for height, hair was worn piled high on top of the head, and clothing was narrow with exaggerated padded shoulder. Suit Lachasse London Wool, silk crepe de chine, and silk jersey Museum no. This suit is typical of the s post-war 'New Look'.

The skirt is straight and slightly below the knee in length, while the jacket features a nipped in waist, padded hips, and sloping shoulders inspired by Christian Dior's 'New Look' collection of , which moved fashion away from the boxy, military look of the war years.

A meticulously tailored but perfectly plain suit is transformed by carefully engineered details. The focus on this jacket is the double-flared panels which draw attention to the hips. The long straight skirt has a central block of kick pleats at the back, which allow ease of movement. The suit is completed by a matching turban-style hat in claret and black, and a hand-embroidered silk blouse in delicate blue-grey.

In , the British Government established the Utility Scheme to ration materials and regulate the production of civilian clothing during the war. This overall, or housedress, was designed to Utility standards. It has no more than two pockets, five buttons, six seams, inches of stitching and no superfluous decoration. It is made of a floral printed fabric, an area of textile production in which Britain has long excelled. It is typical of the s, when shoulder pads and full puffed sleeves were fashionable.

Skirts were typically narrow, giving dresses a rather top-heavy look. A black afternoon dress with a good label was both a chic choice and a sensible one.

Edward Molyneux could be relied on to provide streamlined distinction. This dress has a schoolmistress-like authority and propriety; its covered-up look features a demure high neck, long sleeves and a safe, calf-length skirt.

However, Molyneux transformed it into a little black dress with attitude by cutting the matt crepe to skim sensuously over the body's curves and by introducing pleats at salient points.

A wide sash arranged in folds below the waist emphasised the slenderness of the wearer. The dress buttons down the back. The dress is typical of the mid to late s, when full skirts and padded or paniered hips were very fashionable. This style was fashionable into the early s, but the hairstyle marks it out as a particularly s model. Here the hair is shown piled high, in curls, on top of the head.

In the s hair was worn in chignons towards the back of the head or at the nape of the neck, or cropped short in a gamine style. The design is signed with the firm's name and probably would have been used as a presentation drawing, for the client to decide which model they wanted to have made. The design is titled 'Model: This is a fashion design for a day suit, designed by Marjorie Field in the s for the couture firm Field Rhoades of London.

It depicts a typical mid s day suit, with very wide shoulder, a nipped in waist and a straight, knee-length skirt. The design would probably have been used as a presentation drawing, for clients to decide which model they wanted to have made. Shoe Designer unknown s England Leather, punched and stitched Museum no. This is a pair of men's brogue shoes, made of leather. The traditional brogue employs circles and dots born along the lines of the shoe's construction, emphasising the stitching, and as a prominent field pattern on the toecap.

In the British Board of Trade commissioned ten members of the recently formed Incorporated Society of London Designers to create a collection of regulation day wear under the auspices of the Utility scheme, an austerity measure introduced by the Board of Trade during the Second World War, when clothes were rationed. Smart yet practical, this shirtwaister - a kind of tailored shirt-dress - was the only black garment in the designer Utility collection. The rayon crepe dress has all the characteristics of wartime clothing - broad shoulders shaped by heavy flock pads , a skirt length just below the knee and a square silhouette, but it also has also eye-catching details, such as bold lapels and a roomy pocket set diagonally on the left hip.

Evening dress Elsa Schiaparelli, , Paris Black silk crepe, embroidered with pearls, sequins and metallic strip, and fastened with a plastic zip Museum no. Elsa Schiaparelli enjoyed the enormous publicity that her more bizarre creations generated, but her less provocative designs rarely caused a furore and have been somewhat neglected. She often referred to her simple black dresses and their versatility, and regularly wore black herself.

Here she composed a short-sleeved dress in matt black crepe. The extremely simple, fluid shape is relieved by a slashed neckline and a bold embroidered spray of lilies by the specialist embroidery company Lesage in various sizes of pearls, sequins and metallic strip. The dress fastens with a black plastic zip on the left-hand side. Suit jacket and skirt Digby Morton , designer , for the Utility Scheme London Grey herringbone wool, fastened with metal buttons, trimmed with a grosgrain bow Museum no.

The buttons on this tailored ensemble bear a wartime message. The Utility Scheme was introduced in to ensure that consumer goods were produced to the highest possible standards at 'reasonable' prices. Reginald Schipp designed the symbol. He was asked to disguise the 'CC' so that the public would not recognise the letters as such. This stylised motif became known as 'the cheeses' and was also printed on to clothing labels.

The Board of Trade commissioned the design for this jacket, skirt and blouse from the Incorporated Society of London Fashion Designers. It was one of 32 stylish yet economical outfits intended for general production. In October Vogue magazine published the following description of the collection: Although the designers of individual pieces were not publicised, this suit has Digby Morton's initials inked on a paper tag.

There is a Morton label inside the blouse, making it one of only two Utility prototype garments labelled by the original designer. The other piece is a Bianca Mosca blouse. The design is signed with the name of the firm, and would probably have been used as a presentation drawing, for clients to decide which model they wanted to have made. The s continued the late s style with very full skirts, cinched waists and sloping shoulders.

Another popular silhouette was the narrow pencil-skirt look. Daywear consisted of skirts and jackets or day dresses in tweeds and woollens. Dresses with pencil or full skirts were seen in either plain fabrics or floral prints. Separates were popular, especially waist length cardigans.

Hats were either small pill-box styles or large brimmed, saucer-like hats. Hair was often cropped quite short and set in curls, or kept long and tied in simple chignons or ponytails at the back. Men's fashions still revolved around the suit. Grey flannel suits were common, worn with shirt, tie and pocket handkerchief.

Tweed or check jackets worn with non-matching trousers were also popular, and open collars were permitted for casual wear. Hair was worn with a side parting but slicked back with 'Brill cream'. Teenagers began to appear as a separate group during the s. Their fashions were influenced by American stars, who wore leather jackets and jeans. The Teddy Boys, who wore pointed shoes, tight trousers and long jackets with velvet trim, were also a significant teenage group. This photograph of the pop singer Eve Boswell shows her in a typical s evening dress.

The dress features a full, almost ankle-length skirt with sunray pleats. Her hair is cut quite short and set with curls around the face. This photograph shows the s pop singer, Lita Roza, in fashionable '50s dress.

Her hair is cut fashionably short, and she wears bright red lipstick. The coats illustrated here are typical of the s. The coat on the right has sloping shoulders and a long, full skirt, reflecting the prevalent s silhouette. It would have accommodated a voluminous 'New Look' style skirt underneath it. The coat on the left hangs from the shoulders, and would have been worn over narrower pencil skirts or day dresses.

Women usually wore hats outdoors in the s, and the small pill-box type as seen here was very fashionable. This distinctive style comprising bowler hat, fitted jacket and tapered trousers with waisted overcoat and velvet collar evolved shortly after the Second World War - in the late s and early s.

It is attributed to a group of fashion-conscious young men, some of whom were formerly officers in the Brigade of Guards. They were subsequently christened The Edwardians and were reputed to be the inspiration of the 'Teddy Boy' fashions of the s. Teddy derives from Eddy, a diminutive of Edward. The originators were probably influenced at first by their familiarity with the customary civilian dress for Guards officers, which consisted of a bowler hat, a double-breasted overcoat known as a 'British warm', a striped shirt with white collar and pin-stripe trousers.

The traditional and conservative styling of these overcoats and trousers would have blended in quite naturally with the 'Edwardian' image. The donor to the Museum of this suit took his inspiration directly from the Edwardian period Edward VII reigned by requesting his tailor to copy a suit worn by Sir Winston Churchill in that was shown in a photograph of the time. This photograph shows the pop singer Patti Lewis in her dressing room. Her hair is cut short and set in curls, which is a typical style of the s.

She wears light eye make-up and bright red lipstick. She wears casual, youthful dress, inspired by teenage and rock and roll fashions. This suit comprises a fitted jacket and slim-fitting skirt with a kick pleat at the back. It was shown in Balenciaga's Winter collection in as model no.

His suits were highly regarded and commanded high prices. He was adept at manipulating firm fabrics. The style of jacket relies for effect on careful fitting to the body in front and gentle fullness at the back, and in the setting of the sleeves.

Balenciaga was renowned in the trade for inspecting and resetting sleeves that were not perfect. Tweed was a sturdy woollen fabric that appealed to Balenciaga because of the optical illusions created by the two or more colours in the indistinct flecked pattern.

This dress is typical of a conservative ensemble of the s. This might have been worn by an older woman, with a hat, gloves and handbag for a special occasion such as a wedding. Hundreds of tiny pin-tucks cover the entire surface of both dress and coat in this blue-green silk ensemble by Hartnell. The detail around the top of the outfit shows how the garment is formed from interwoven strips of silk in a simple basket weave, a play upon the construction of woven fabric which is further emphasised by the patterning of the narrow tucks.

Horrockses was a large cotton manufacturing firm, founded in Preston in , known for weaving high quality household cottons. In they launched Horrockses Fashions Limited, a subsidiary company making ready-to-wear dresses, housecoats and beachwear, with a headquarters in London's Hanover Square. The success of the firm was due to the quality of the design of the vibrant printed cottons, often commissioned from artists, combined with advanced production methods, which maintained the crisp cotton despite frequent washes.

Dresses from Horrockses Fashions appealed to women of different ages and social backgrounds as the perfect summer dress. They were relatively expensive and were popular with members of the Royal Family - but working women would save up to buy one, often as a honeymoon outfit.

This example was worn by Elizabeth Payze as a teenager. Christian Dior launched his couture house in , and soon became one of the most successful fashion designers of the 20th century. The smooth silhouette of this dress is formed by underpinnings and petticoats. The draped fabric knot is inspired by 19th-century dress, and is typical of Dior's historicism. Dior often named his collections after letters of the alphabet, and this particular dress comes from the 'Y line'.

The deep v-neck of this dress typifies Dior's 'Y' motif, as does the inverted Y shape of the pleats of the skirt. Evening dress Worth London About London Silk dupion with embroidery of sequins, pastes and crystal beads; lined with taffeta and faced with net Museum no. The House of Worth, established in Paris in by Charles Frederick Worth , was the original and founding couture house.

Worth London was an offshoot of the original. It created refined, well-mannered garments for a mainly English clientele for the London social season. She purchased Worth gowns between and This dress dates from about , when Owen Hyde-Clark was the chief designer. Worth was known for delicately embroidered dresses in shades of champagne and rose, and this dress is typical of the house's style. The skirt is cut as a complete circle. It needed many layers of petticoats to fill the skirt and show the embroidery to its best advantage.

Grès About London Spotted net with gathered side drape Museum no. Cocktail dresses gained a new popularity after the Second World War. They were worn at early evening or '6 to 8' gatherings.

Since guests usually stood and mingled the gowns could include complex bustles and skirt details, which would be crushed if sat on. In his book 'The Little Dictionary of Fashion' Christian Dior described cocktail dresses as 'elaborate and dressy afternoon frocks', preferably in black taffeta, satin, chiffon and wool.

These confections became the personification of the 'little black dress' and were often accessorised with gloves and small, elaborate hats. This photograph shows the popular s singer, Dennis Lotis. He wears loose chinos and a pastel coloured, check sweater with a collar. Knitwear separates were very popular for men during the s, and tank-tops, cardigans and jumpers were often worn with open neck shirts or sometimes with shirt and tie.

Lotis' hair is worn in a fashionable side parting, but slicked to the side and back with Brillcreem. This photograph shows s supermodel, Barbara Goalen, modelling a 'New Look' style outfit. The skirt is full, the waist cinched in with a belt, and she wears a wide saucer hat.

The exaggerated hourglass figure was the fashionable ideal for women during the s. The little black dress was a classic design. Women could wear them for work during the day and then, with a change of accessories, wear them out in the evening. This version was designed by Jean Dessès in about It has a modest bodice with a high neck and long sleeves. The bodice is made in matte wool and fastens in the front with self-covered buttons. It has been cut and fitted to fit closely.

The skirt is made of pleated lustrous silk taffeta. Evening dress Michael Sherard —98 London French re-embroidered ribbon lace, with taffeta Museum no. Since guests usually stood and mingled, the gowns could include complex bustles, appliqué and skirt details, which would be crushed if sat on.

The flamenco dress was a recurring theme in s cocktail and evening wear. This is a good example of a sheath dress, popular throughout the s. Its construction appears simple, but the clean lines are achieved by skilled cutting and intricate diagonal seaming. Joan Regan was a popular singer with a particularly glamorous image.

The bodice is shaped, and is probably corseted. Her hair is set with curls around the face, and she wears bright red lipstick. Evening dress Victor Stiebel s London Satin embroidered with beads and rhinestones Museum no. This dress was designed by the London couturier Victor Stiebel — He was originally trained by the court dressmaker, Reville.

Lady Ethel Templer née Davie, , bought this dress in the late s. She was very slim and was able to buy the original dress worn by a house model for the collection. It was originally strapless, but she asked Stiebel to add the straps because her shoulders were narrow. Lady Templer was the wife of the British High Commissioner to Malaya, and required an extensive wardrobe for the many formal dinners and state functions that she had to attend.

The embroidery upon the bodice would have originally been more silvery than it appears now. The metal has oxidised making it appear slightly black and dull. This dress is typical of the s. It reflects the fashionable 'New Look' style introduced by Christian Dior in , with its voluminous mid-calf length skirt and tight moulded bodice. The skirt is supported by layers and layers of tulle. This dress was made by top London couturier Hardy Amies, but this silhouette permeated into most women's wardrobes via ready-to-wear or home pattern versions.

Immediately after the Second World War when fabric was scarce, many women sewed extra strips of material onto the bottom of their existing skirts to achieve the fashionable length and fullness. Evening dress Jacques Heim , Paris Silk organza, with an underdress of silk taffeta and organza Museum no. The House of Heim was founded in to serve an aristocratic clientele. Jacques Heim began to extend his parents' establishment, which specialized in furs, into a couture house in He launched 'Heim Jeunes Filles' in to follow younger tastes in fashion.

All Heim's designs had a classical elegance that made them suitable for grand, formal occasions. His business closed in This long, sleeveless ballgown is made of fuschia silk organza.

The full skirt features deep box pleats at the back for volume. It is shorter at the front than at the back, combining the formal grandeur of traditional ballgowns and the fashion for short eveningwear typical of the late s. Evening dress Pierre Balmain Paris Silk grosgrain with embroidery, lined with linen, supported by boning and net Museum no. Pierre Balmain —82 opened his couture house in He had previously trained alongside Christian Dior at the couture house of Lucien Lelong.

Balmain became one of the most successful couturiers of his generation and by his house employed workers, with 12 couture workrooms and in-house fur and millinery ateliers. Horrockses was a large cotton manufacturing firm, founded in Preston, Lancashire, in , known for weaving high quality household cottons. In they launched Horrockses Fashions Limited, a subsidiary company making ready-to-wear dresses, housecoats and beachwear, with headquarters in London's Hanover Square.

The success of the firm was due to the quality of the design of the printed cottons, often commissioned from artists, combined with advanced production methods, which preserved the crispness of the cotton while allowing for frequent washing. Young people's income was at its highest since the end of the Second World War, creating the desire for a wardrobe which did more than simply copy adult dress.

Designers like Mary Quant and Biba label provided clothes that were aimed specifically at young people, of which the mini-skirt was the most distinctive introduction. Women wore pale foundation and emphasised their eyes with kohl, mascara and false eyelashes. Hair was long and straight or worn in a shaped bob or wedge. Towards the end of the decade the hippy movement from the west coast of America emerged, experimenting with colours, patterns and textures borrowed from non-Western cultures.

Older or more conservative women still tended to dress in skirts below the knee with tailored jackets, coats or cardigans. Perhaps the most remarkable development in s dress was the dramatic change in menswear. For the past years, clothing for men had been tailor-made, and plain and sombre in appearance. Now, colourful new elements were introduced, such as the collarless jacket, worn with slim-fitting trousers and boots.

During the mids frills and cravats were worn with vividly printed shirts. Finally, lapels and trousers took on exaggeratedly wide dimensions. Clothing became increasingly unisex as men and women shopped at the same boutiques for similar items. This photograph is by fashion photographer John French. Throughout the s and s he shot the latest fashions for magazines and newspapers, and he usually photographed affordable, high-street ranges that many teenagers would be able to buy.

The models shown here sport typical s styling. The men have exaggerated side partings and side-burns, whilst the woman has a heavy, straight fringe. She is wearing a fashionable tunic top and knickerbockers.

The models shown here are easily dated to the s because of their hair and make up. They sport heavy fringes with straight hair curled up at the bottom.

Their lipstick is pale but their eyes are accentuated with thick, black kohl eyeliner. The success of their affordable, youthful designs enabled them to open a small shop in Kensington the following year.

They attracted glamorous pop stars, bohemian aristocrats and impoverished students alike. The label was famous for murky colour palettes, but they also produced some strikingly colourful garments. Purple was a typical Biba colour, but when combined with a vibrant yellow zig-zagging print and a short flirty skirt, the effect is dramatic. In the s, Biba clothing featured some of the shortest miniskirts available, focusing attention on the wearer's legs.

Their reputation for micro-minis started almost by accident following a shipment of jersey skirts in Barbara Hulanicki, the designer, recollected in her autobiography, A to Biba:. God, I thought, we'll go bust - we'll never be able to sell them. I couldn't sleep, but that little fluted skirt walked out on customers as fast as we could get it onto the hatstands.

Barbara Hulanicki launched the Biba label with her husband John Fitz Simon in , initially selling clothes by mail order through newspaper advertisements. The success of her affordable, fashionable designs enabled them to open a series of shops in Kensington, London.

This dress appeared in the Summer mail order catalogue. Marion Kite, an art school student, wore the dress for special occasions in London, and also on holiday in Cornwall. Mini-dresses were popular with Biba customers in the late s, alongside longer dresses and trousers with wide flares. Holiday dresses such as this were even shorter than the standard Biba dress length.

The celebrities shown here are easily dated to the s because of their hair and make up. They sport bouffant styles, back-combed for a full, bee-hive shape, and heavy fringes. This evening mini-dress in black crepe was designed by Mary Quant for her Ginger Group collections in Mary Quant was world-famous for championing the mini-skirt, and in the s her name became associated with the predominantly black Chelsea look, with its beatnik overtones.

This tunic was part of Ossie Clark's first collection for his lower-priced Radley label. The print is by Celia Birtwell. The simple silhouette meant that it could be worn either as a dress or with trousers. Ossie Clark was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers of the s and s. Throughout the s and s he shot the latest fashions for magazines and newspapers, and he usually photographed affordable, high-street ranges that most people would be able to buy.

The models shown here sport work and casual wear, and are easily dated to the s because of their hair, which is parted at one side.

Its donor identified the work 'my scarlet runner' as 'a seminal dress at the beginning of a new and still, to me, exciting decade'. Until the beginning of the s youth quake, daughters had no alternative but to dress like their mothers. In tune with the times, Mary Quant offered them identities of their own with styles such as this vivid red shift with youthful appeal.

The late s celebrity boutique phenomenon saw popular teenage idols launching clothing lines and boutiques. Such ventures tended to be short-lived, lasting a few years or even months, like the Beatles' 'Apple' boutique, which closed in July after 7 months. The famous s model, Twiggy, launched her fashion label 'Twiggy Dresses' on 16 February The shops showed them on Twiggy portrait mannequins, and Twiggy did all the modelling and publicity.

She worked with the young designers, Paul Babb and Pamela Proctor to ensure they designed clothes she would happily wear herself, such as this brightly patterned mini-dress. This personal input and strong branding enabled the label to run successfully for three years. Cardin's bold futuristic clothes were largely designed for active young women.

In The Observer newspaper said of Cardin's designs: This fabric allowed free movement, but at the same time was sufficiently rigid to maintain the clear-cut shapes. This 'space suit' forms part of the Cecil Beaton Collection.

With great energy and determination Sir Cecil Beaton contacted designers and the well-dressed elite of Europe and America to create this lasting monument to the art of dress. The collection was exhibited in , accompanied by a catalogue that detailed its enormous range.

Paper dresses were a brief but spectacular s sensation. They were cheap and disposable, and the simple 2-D shape was ideal for the bold graphic prints that were so fashionable. In the Draper's Record announced that Ossie Clark had launched Britain's first range of throwaway dresses. The floral design, by Celia Birtwell, was printed onto imitation paper made by Johnson and Johnson, formed from bonded textile fibres. The wholesale price was 15 shillings.

Midi-coats and maxi-coats for men and women were introduced in High-waisted with broad lapels and sometimes belts, they reached to the mid-calf for the midi and to the ankles for the maxi. The style was derived from military coats at a time when military tailoring had become fashionable. During the late s there was a craze for wearing second-hand uniforms, usually Brigade of Guards red jackets and various greatcoats.

It was these greatcoats that influenced the cut of the midi and maxi. Mary Quant's mini-dresses for her 'Ginger Group' label epitomise the s fashion revolution. This jersey shift dress is like a sweater grown to dress length, and a version was modelled by Twiggy in a Vogue 'Young Idea' fashion spread in April With the hem well above the knee it was ideally suited to her boyish figure.

The dress was donated as unsold stock from a smart boutique called 'Merlyn', in London's East End, reputedly patronised by gangsters and their girlfriends.

Evening mini-dress Paco Rabanne born Paris Plastic pailletes joined with metal wire Museum no. Paco Rabanne led the field of radical experimentation in elite fashion design in the s. Having trained as an architect, initially he made plastic buttons and jewellery for Paris couture houses.

When he opened his own fashion business in , his architectural background and the current interest in space travel informed his work. Using techniques borrowed from jewellery, he created sculptural dresses in unconventional materials which broke all the rules. This 'chain mail' dress was worn over a flesh-coloured bodystocking.

Dispo's paper dresses were actually made out of a bonded cellulose fibre and could be washed. A Which magazine consumer trial found that they could be worn at least six times, while other brands would not survive beyond two or three.

A fashionable young woman would have worn this garment either as a mini-dress or with trousers. The textile design is a plain grid pattern. A simple waist-tie gives shapely definition to the loose tunic-style. This was one of the first Ossie Clark designs for his less expensive Radley label. Clark was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers of the s and 70s.

Though initially shocking to some, many designers embraced its informality and ease of movement. Here American designer Leonard Joseph combines the youthful shape of the mini with an unconventional paper textile. She was the sister of Jackie Kennedy and a regular figure on the social scene of both sides of the Atlantic. This daywear ensemble, designed by Emanuel Ungaro — , is composed of a knee-length dress and a pair of shorts.

Made from printed gabardine, showing abstract motifs in orange, white and brown, the dress has a small round collar and long sleeves. The matching shorts are worn under the dress and are not visible. Born in France to Italian parents. Ungaro trained as a tailor, and then worked for Balenciaga and Courreges, whose influence is particularly evident here, and who was the first designer to introduce this concept in the mids. Day dress and jacket Emmanuel Ungaro born Paris Wool gabardine, lined throughout with surah, with a zip and hooks and eyes Museum no.

Emmanuel Ungaro was born in Aix-en-Provence, France, in He played an important role in the rejuvenation of Paris fashion. He left Balenciaga, with whom he had worked for six years, to join Courrèges in When this partnership failed, he began to design, independently showing his first collection in Like Courrèges, Ungaro sculpted hard-edged clothes in heavy worsted fabrics and triple gaberdines.

His garments retained the angular shapes of the mid s fashions so perfectly that they often almost stood up by themselves. This day dress and jacket was worn by Mrs Brenda Azario. It was featured in French Vogue March and March This Moss Bros suit, designed in , is striking in that it is totally unadorned, even the jacket buttons are concealed by a fly front. The stand-up Nehru style collar became fashionable in the mid s. A daring purple satin lining belies the sober grey exterior.

Moss Bros was founded in the s by Moses Moses. The company built its reputation from selling ready-to-wear tailoring. This trouser-dress designed by Emilio Pucci in is typical of Italian fashion. The dress has a sleeveless bodice with a low-cut neckline. The bodice is cut under the bust and continues into a wide trouser-skirt. Long dresses and skirts were no longer restricted to evening wear but were increasingly part of daywear. This suit was made by Bernard Weatherill during the British fashion boom of the s and is a good example of the styles of that period.

The repetition of curved lines in flapped pockets, cuffs, collar and lapels, along with unusual covered buttons, show a dapper and stylish attention to detail. Bernard Weatherill was a men's tailoring and equestrian dress-maker, established in Savile Row in Today, the company retains a host of Royal Appointments. Ensemble dress and coat Andre Courrèges born Paris Machine stitched worsted and spandex Museum no.

The coat is short, double breasted, and has a triangular shape. It has two long sleeves, two vertical pockets on the front and fastens with four buttons. There is a blue spandex trimming around the collar, the upper part of the coat, the pockets and the sleeves. The back of the coat shows a slit from waist down to the hem, covered with a panel. All the seams are double. The dress is short, and has a triangular shape.

There are two buttons on the front, six at the back and two vertical pockets on the front. There is a blue spandex trimming around the neckline, the shoulders, the pockets and the hem. André Courreges was born in France in After a brief career in engineering, he turned to fashion and worked with Balenciaga from to From Balenciaga he learned to search for a pure, simple and sharp line which, mixed with his taste for white and pure colours, allowed him to create designs for a younger generation.

This ensemble shows Courrège's architectural approach to fashion: The use of white, underlined here with plastic blue, and the use of heavy worsted, make the shape of this ensemble stand out almost as an architectural object.

The choice of blue and white, refers to the 'matelot' style popular amongst youth in France during the mid s. We have launched a new website and are reviewing this page.

Victoria and Albert Museum The world's leading museum of art and design. Home Visit Opening times Open daily from Men Men wore three-piece lounge suits with bowler or cloth caps. Christening gown, designer unknown Christening gown Designer unknown s, England Linen, trimmed with embroidery, lace and ribbon Museum no. Photograph of Henriette Henriot, by C. Summer day dress, designer unknown Summer day dress Designer unknown , Great Britain Printed striped cotton, with a yoke neck of tucked Broderie Anglaise frills and pin-tucked collar with a tape lace frill Museum no.

This resulted in a range of informal styles that fed into mainstream fashion: Mrs Humphry, 'Manners for Men', London This suit has two slanting hip pockets with flaps and a small ticket pocket at the waist seam on the right-hand side. Mourning dress, designer unknown Mourning dress Designer unknown About Great Britain Wool trimmed with mourning crape and lined with glazed cotton Museum no.

Suit, designer unknown Double-breasted suit Designer unknown About Great Britain Flannel woven with a thin vertical pin-stripe, with mother-of-pearl buttons, and sleeves lined with cotton Museum no. One gentlemen's etiquette book wrote: Underpants, designer unknown Underpants Designer unknown Great Britain Machine-knitted silk, with pearl buttons and silk loops for braces, machine-sewn Museum no.

Owram Vests and pants were worn next to the skin, under the shirt or trousers. Evening dress, Jays Ltd. Evening dress, Maison Laferriere Evening dress Maison Laferriere About , Paris Figured satin, decorated with imitation pearls, diamantes and spangles; net is modern replacement Museum no. Norfolk jacket, designer unknown Norfolk jacket Designer unknown About Great Britain Checked tweed, with sateen and striped cotton lining and buttons of horn, hand- and machine-sewn Museum no.

Vest, designer unknown Vest Designer unknown Great Britain Machine-knitted silk, with silk placket and pearl buttons, hand- and machine-sewn Museum no. Owram Vests became fashionable during the s and were often described as 'undershirts'. Worth Ball gown Charles Frederick Worth About , Paris Silk velvet, trimmed with diamante; petticoat, sleeves and neck edgings are modern replacements in the style of Worth Museum no.

Summer day dress, designer unknown Summer day dress Designer unknown Great Britain Printed striped cotton, with a yoke neck of tucked Broderie Anglaise frills and pin-tucked collar with a tape lace frill Museum no. Travelling gown, designer unknown Travelling gown Designer unknown , Great Britain Woollen face cloth, trimmed with braid and velvet, and inserted with panels of net and machine-made lace Museum no. Smoking suit, designer unknown Smoking suit Designer unknown About Great Britain Silk, lined with wool, hand and machine sewn Museum no.

Photograph of ladies walking in the Avenue des Acacias, J. Black silk crepe dress, Lucile Dress Lucile Lady Lucy Duff-Gordon, , London Black silk crepe, edged with bands of black and cream silk, the neck fitted with machine-made black lace Museum no. Day dress, designer unknown Day dress Designer unknown England Linen, with silk organza collar and cuffs and silk twill bow Museum no.

Evening dress, designer unknown Evening dress Designer unknown About Great Britain or France Silk chine and silk voile, brocaded with metallic threads, and trimmed with mauve satin, diamantes, imitation pearls and bobbin lace Museum no. Bohener This is a typical example of a gentleman's morning suit. Order results near to. Browns Browns This is the place to come if you want to buy designer names - with over different labels stocked.

The store always has a Topshop Topshop Topshop is a byword for High Street Fashion in England, known for their inexpensive, plain tops, basic collections and a good range of accessories. One of a Kind One of a Kind Kate, Naomi and Sienna all shop here for vintage finds that they can be sure they won't see anyone else wearing.

For such A-list guests Austique Austique Immensely popular with glamorous London ladies the relaxed, very girly atmosphere that pervades this place is inspired by the boutiques in Australia. Matches Matches If you find the stores in Sloane Street and Bond Street a little overwhelming, Matches is a far more civilized way to get your hands Absolute Vintage Absolute Vintage A whole array of vintage handbags, dresses and belts are on offer at this specialist shop including more than a thousand pairs of shoes and Launched in a tiny shop in Nottingham in he is now a global brand This, though, at no.

Kokon To Zai Kokon To Zai Kokon to Zai, meaning "east meets west" in Japanese, is a mix of designer clothes and interior design pieces but what makes it Heidi Klein Heidi Klein Heidi Klein usefully stocks ladies beach ware all year round, in case you feel like a break in the sun in mid-February.

Hideout Hideout One-stop solution to all your street-wear problems — home-grown brands like Gimme 5 and GoodEnough hang next to exclusive designs straight off the boat.

Burberry, Regent Street Burberry, Regent Street The flagship Burberry store on Regent Street sees fashion meet technology, with mirrors that transform into catwalk screens and staff members equipped with iPads so Louis Vuitton Louis Vuitton The monogrammed leather goods, embellished with the distinctive intertwined initials 'L' and 'V', have become the trademark Louis Vuitton look.

You can't walk down a Banana Republic Banana Republic When this three floor flagship store opened on 20th March Londoners celebrated - no longer would we have to go to the States to Stock 'em cheap and pile Mint Vintage Mint Vintage Mint Vintage specialises in men's and ladies clothing from seventies sheepskin to hidden vintage gems.

No musty second hand cast-offs here. Instead you get an Vintage Modes Vintage Modes This delightful step-back-in-time shop specialise in vintage fashions and resident experts David Wightman and June Victor can spot a genuine 's scalloped edged, taffeta ballet Topshop Topshop Cutting-edge designs at high street prices are what make Topshop the best, the biggest and the most popular fashion retailer on the market.

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THE OUTNET | Discount Designer Fashion Outlet - Deals up to 75% smashingprogrammsrj.tk has been visited by 10K+ users in the past monthClearance is Here · Up to 80% Off · THE OUTNET SaleStyles: Casual, Elegant, Sporty. Women’s Covent Garden boasts some of the best luxury womenswear stores in London. From British fashion designers Mulberry and Burberry to the ultimate luxury concept store, The Shop at Bluebird, fashionistas are truly spoilt for choice. Find the best Women's Clothing on Yelp: search reviews of London businesses by price, type, or location.

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