Fashion in the 1940s
This book reveals the impact of wartime and austerity on British fashion and tells the story of how a spirit of patriotism and make-do-and-mend unleashed a wave of new creativity among women who were starved of high fashion by shortages and rationing.
Many home dressmakers copied the high-end looks, and women involved in war work created a whole new aesthetic of less formal street wear. Fashion in the 1940s also shows how the Second World War shifted the centre of the international couture scene away from Paris, allowing British designers to influence Home Front style.
Afterwards Paris fashion was re-born with Dior's extravagant New Look, while casual American trends were widely adopted by young British women and men.