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Fashion in the 1920s

1920s Fashion Showcase

Above: This silk georgette dress with its bias-cut ruffle was worn by a bride in 1929 in Saskatoon. A Saskatoon business owner, had the suit above tailored for him by local tailor John Madden in 1921.

The devastating loss of eight million men in the First World War had a significant impact on the 1920s. With so many young men killed, youth was at a premium. The youthful population, dubbed the ‘Lost Generation’, responded by living life to the fullest. They rebelled against the Victorian and Edwardian values held by the older generation by pushing the limits of fashion, music and acceptable manners.

In fashion, styles of the late 1920s were much different than those of the previous decade. Hemlines were on the rise, while waistlines were on the slide.

The loose, often sleeveless, low-waisted, knee-length and straight line look of the youthful flapper was a stark contrast to the fitted, mid-calf look of the teens. Turbans and cloche hats were “in” along with jewelled and feathered headbands

The one writer who is most readily identified with the Roaring 20s is F. Scott Fitzgerald. He depicted the lives of the privileged during the Jazz Age in such novels as The Great Gatsby (1925) and The Beautiful and the Damned (1922). Along with his wife Zelda, Fitzgerald lived the wild lifestyle he wrote about in his novels. The essence of the flapper was featured in countless magazine articles, caricatured in cartoons and captured in films like Love’ Em and Leave ‘Em (1926) starring Louise brooks.

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