Monday, 2 May 2016

Sepia Saturday 328; 30.April 2016/ war and fashion;

"The Great War. Refugees from Antwerp, Belgium, bringing a painting into safety. Belgium, 1914;

I have taken  liberty to the second World War and its  war time  fashion. It seems frivolous to talk about fashion in times of hardship, yet, fashion provided the spirit to fight and stay on top of  all adversity, it meant all was not lost, even when times were hard,

Women walk down a London street during the Second World War in 1941.
D 2937

Garments were rationed in Europe at the time of the second world war. Clothing coupons had to be carefully spend for garments which were practical and usable for all seasons.
The war disrupted fashion in many ways, resources and  materials  for civilian clothing was very limited. Purchase tax and rationing was introduced, but  women were resourceful and created their own fashion.

Handbag with a gas mask compartment.
EQU 3967

Wartime 'onesies' for the air raid shelter

A woman's all-in-one garment, nicknamed the 'siren suit'.
UNI 5309

The 'siren suit' was an all-in-one garment which could be pulled on quickly over night clothes if the wearer had to escape to an outdoor air raid shelter.  A  practical drop down panel is attached to the rear so the wearer could visit the lavatory without removing the whole garment. Siren suits were a popular wartime trend.

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  1. That handbag with the gas msk compartment must have been scary, but the wartime "onesie" looks a lot more shapely and stylish than some present day equivalents :-)

    1. It looks like "onesies" have been around before. I guess it was quickly put on,comfortable and warm to wear.

  2. What an interesting post - especially for someone who never had to think of such things!

  3. I think we now know where Elvis got his design idea for his Vegas suits.

  4. I remember my Mum calling my childhood playsuits siren suits in the fifties; mine weren’t so stylish though!

  5. The siren suit would be great for long distance air plane travel...needs a hood though. Love those
    skirts with the kick pleat in front.