1920's

The roaring 20's were a time of joy and parties - the great war was over and now there could be shared celebration, with caution thrown to the wind.

The American image of flappers with their short and sparkly dresses is one that dominates the mind when thinking of the 1920's. The American fashion world went as wild as everybody else when the war ended, and although it was not an isolated movement, English fashion couldn't quite keep up.

 

Women's dresses took the expected turn, and the hems crept up. The early 20's saw a hem resting at mid-calf, dramatically higher than the pre-20's look. Necklines dropped, and the figure was now concealed rather than defined - making the 20's the era of the flat-chested woman - waists too were lower, continuing to conceal the figure for a more free feeling. Hats became much smaller, sitting atop the new stylishly short bobbed haircut.

Mens lounge suits got tighter and more fitted to the body - trouser legs were shorter, usually with a turn-up but the longer jacket was still popular. Spats to protect the shoes paired with the new softer felt hat completes the male 20's look.

As the 1920's drew on, womens dresses embraced the lower waist and higher hem, now creeping up to the knee and exposing the  beige stockings beneath. Designs were plain and the fit remained loose, leaving women with freedom to move. Hats were smaller than ever, as was the hair!

Men began to draw away from longer lounge suits, wearing increasingly popular contrasting sports jackets with the now wider trousers - widening at the turn-up became known as 'Oxford bags'.  Still accompanied by a stylish felt hat, men were doing their best to keep up with womens rapidly changing outfits.

20's