British fashion

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Purple was a hot color in late It changed in shape over time and a range of different styles appeared as the century progressed. Bringing subversive style to the Eastern Congo".

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Women borrowed suit styles from men. The military look was also popular. Army pockets, brass buttons, epaulets, and trench coat treatments were featured on coats, suits and sportswear.

Twiggy was a fashion sensation. Women also wore peekaboo fishnets, spidery weaves and lace. Not only did they provide smoothness from hip-to-toe, but they also eliminated the possibility of garter show. Women also fancied high boots as a fashionable way to cover up their legs.

High-rise stretch vinyl and patent leather provided a glove-like fit. They also wore shiny black and brown boots that stretched to the knees. Youth continued to set the pace for fashion. In addition to leg, the fashion world fell in love with Twiggy, the skinny year-old British model who burst upon the scene, adorned every magazine cover and brought the age of the mini-mod to the forefront. Her success was controversial at the time. To some, she was an insult to the female figure, while other lavished her fresh, new look.

Her slightly androgynous look blurred the lines between genders. Another interesting development in Accessories consisting of metal squares, nailheads, rattling chains, zippers, brass buttons, clamps were something new. The chain belt was another important accessory.

Turtleneck sweaters were an important trend, eliminating the need for a tie. The more daring sported a turtleneck under dinner jackets for a casual elegance. People were creating their own styles to match their personalities and mood. Accessories dominated the outfit, often times overpowering the clothes in importance. The new attitude was a reaction to the mini-dress of recent years, whose lack of fabric alone gave women less fashion real estate to work with.

Western-type shirts were very popular with the younger crowd. Women would tuck them into Dirndl skirts for a fun look. Unfortunately for the fashion world, the midi skirt never caught on. It ended up being one of the biggest misses in recent fashion history. The Bonnie and Clyde movie triggered nostalgia for the s. Pinstriped suits and gangster hats were popping up here and there, looking like they walked right off a period movie set.

The most colorful, loud and expressive trends evolved from the outfits scavenged from thrift stores by hippies. Even affluent women adopted the hippie look in lavish fabrics, furs and jewels.

It was a nomadic mix of ethnic and legend-inspired garb. Gaucho pants, meditation shirts and, especially, vests. Paris finally had to accept what had happened. Designers could no longer pay the bills designing for the affluent. Saint Laurent led the way with his ready-to-wear collection.

Balenciaga shocked the fashion world with his retirement in May. Pants, celebrated for their versatility, were getting wider legs and softer.

Women loved topping them with a color, ethnic-inspired tunic. Male fashions in reflected the growing tendency to mix and match a wide variety of materials, styles and accessories. Tailored suits gave way to a unprecedented array of daring styles. Men wore turtlenecks, Nehru jackets and jeweled pendants. Even bright madras plaids were challenged by the flower-splashed resort blazers and P. In , fashion stretched, softened and became even more body conscious.

A woman wanted to look lean, linear and long. The sometimes funny, frequently edgy and nearly always mini-skirted girl of recent years grew up. Her fashion image became more feminine, sensuous and sophisticated. She wore softer, clingier clothes. Sweaters and sweater dresses now hugged every part of her figure, particularly around the ribs, waist and hips. Instead of choosing a hemline, designers gave women the choice. Both in Paris and in the United States, couturiers showed maxi-lengths, but were aware of sales enough to keep some styles short.

The long, lean line was the most obvious fashion trend in Elongation was accomplished by extended skirts, long, straight-cut pants or, if she had long legs herself, they were accentuated by sheer dark tights.

Slender tunics, skinny long sleeves, low-rise pockets and belts, hip-hiding weskits and body-length cardigans helped fight a top-heavy look.

Hong Kong Education Bureau. Why the Mao suit endures". Uniforms Exposed Dress, Body, Culture. Retrieved 4 October Retrieved 20 May Bringing subversive style to the Eastern Congo". The Art of the Aloha Shirt. From Abba to Zoom: Retrieved 13 January Archived from the original on 31 October Birth of the new romantics Interview by P. The guide to vintage patterns and clothing.

Retrieved April 10, , from Vivienne Westwood website: Fashion since s 2nd ed. Club to catwalk Blitz kids [Video file]. Routledge — via Google Books. McFarland — via Google Books. The Rhythm of Liberation". Scarecrow Press — via Google Books. Photos document the controversial youth cult - Page 3 of 3".

Fitting Clothes into Context: Fitting Clothes into Context". Flava in Ya Gear: The woman who invented Sloanes" — via www. Victorian s s s s s s s Edwardian s s. Ballerina skirt Harem skirt Hobble skirt Poodle skirt Train. Retrieved from " https: Webarchive template wayback links All articles with unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from May Articles with unsourced statements from January Views Read Edit View history.

The man's suit is less formal than those of previous decades. His blazer is shorter than long Victorian frock coats, and resembles a modern 3-piece suit. His collar is not starched up, but is turned down over his tie. His dancing partner wears a dress typical of the decade - a long tunic-style top, belted at the waist over a relatively slim ankle-length skirt.

Day dress Designer unknown England Linen, with silk organza collar and cuffs and silk twill bow Museum no. This simple 'seaside' dress formed part of Miss Heather Firbank's wardrobe. The dress has a simple collar and spotted cravat. Cravats and foulards were popular at the time on blouses as well as dresses. They were inspired by earlier masculine styles in neckwear. In August The Queen magazine described 'the prettiest style of Robespierre collar, finishing with a Latin Quartier cravat of blue and white birds-eye spot silk'.

In Heather Firbank's clothes were packed into trunks and put into storage, where they remained for the next 35 years. This collection forms an invaluable record of a stylish and wealthy woman's taste between about and It was called 'Lady of Fashion: Heather Firbank and what she wore between and '. Dress John Redfern , London Museum no.

The high-waisted black cashmere kimono-like gown is trimmed with striking notes of purple and a wide draped purple sash of silk crepe. It has an unusual bodice without centre back seam , incorporating bat-wing sleeves with long, tapered cuffs and a wired 'Tudor'-style, heart-shaped collar. The gown wraps over and fastens along the left front with tiny press-studs under a line of blind buttonholes with pendant buttons.

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. Before the outbreak of First World War in , which all but smothered the market for luxury goods, couturiers created evening clothes that were complex assemblages of luxurious materials and trimmings. They were often, as with this evening dress, constructed with multiple layers of diaphanous fabrics trimmed with metallic threads, pearls and diamantés to catch the light.

Costume skirt and jacket John Redfern About London Wool flannel with black velvet and silk lining Museum no. This elegant grey flannel two-piece ensemble is called a 'costume'. Coat-and-skirt ensembles such as this would not have been considered suits until after the First World War. During the early s, fashionable women wore slim skirts and neatly fitted blouses, often under quite loosely fitted coats and jackets.

This outfit would have been worn as a walking suit. This is a typical example of a gentleman's morning suit. In the early years of the 20th century it would have been worn as everyday dress by professional and business gentlemen, as well as for formal occasions.

It was said to have been worn at the donor's wedding by her father. The morning coat originated in the single-breasted tailcoat worn in the early 19th century.

This was also known as the riding coat, or 'Newmarket'. By the s the coat was shaped halfway between a riding coat and a frock coat. It was usually single-breasted and was known as the 'cutaway', as the fronts sloped away elegantly to the broad skirts behind. After the First World War the morning suit was gradually superseded by the lounge suit for everyday wear, though it continued to be worn by older men. Around , leading fashion houses such as Worth created evening dresses with a straight silhouette.

Their impact depended on the juxtaposition of colours and a variety of luxurious and richly decorated fabrics. On this garment, vivid velvet pile is set against light-reflecting beadwork, and the triple-tiered matt net overskirt covers the sheen of the trained satin skirt.

The pillar-like look exemplified by this dress replaced the exaggerated curves of the early s. It also shows how designers broke the strong vertical emphasis by creating overskirts with horizontal lines. The bodice, however, is still boned nine bones. Charles Frederick Worth was a celebrated couture dressmaker in Paris. After working for various haberdashers and silk mercers, he left for Paris in In he went into partnership with a Swedish businessman, Otto Bobergh, and opened his own house.

Obtaining made-to-measure clothes from his house was a symbol of social and financial success. They were appreciated for their beauty, elegance and fine workmanship. Day dress Designer unknown About England Museum no. This garment reveals the fashionable elements of dress immediately before World War I The line is straight and the cut especially of the cross-over draped bodice is intricate. Rows of non-functional tiny buttons were frequently used as decorative motifs in this period.

The bodice is lined with white cotton with ruffles attached to give fullness at the bust and has a stiff, silk-faced waistband. It was not made by one of the top houses, for it is probably a copy by a good dressmaker of a Paris model. Side saddle riding habit jacket, skirt, breeches John Redfern , London Black wool flecked with white, lined with pearl grey satin jacket and cotton twill skirt ; breeches of woollen jersey Museum no.

Stewart and Mrs I. The construction of riding-habits is a highly specialized branch of the tailor's art. Because riding-habits are subject to considerable stress, the emphasis throughout is on firm and accurate construction.

Seams that take strain and might rub are lined and reinforced with black cotton, and buttons are backed with cotton. John Redfern was born in England about In the s he began designing beautifully constructed and practical tailored garments to meet the needs of women engaging in various sports, from yachting and tennis to archery and riding.

His designs were adopted by royalty, actresses and fashionable women for everyday wear as well as for sports. He closed his fashion houses in They were resurrected in , but closed again in Summer day dress Designer unknown About France White lacis needle lace and embroidered lawn, with macrame fringe and bobble trim; fastened around the waist with a ribbon belt Museum no. This style of delicate pale dress was immensely popular for wear at summer garden parties and fêtes.

It has wide, inset panels of lacis patterned with a meandering leaf stem at the front, back and sleeve tops to complement the light fabric. An inner net bodice fastens at the centre front with a row of minute lawn-covered buttons and loops. The fashion current between about and for enormous hats was ridiculed in the popular press.

However, fashionable women even suffragettes continued to wear these extravagant creations. False hair pads 'transformations' were often used, and the hats were anchored with long pins stuck through the hat and the real and false hair safety guards shielded the sharp hat-pin points.

The dress was given to the Museum by the Hon. Astor and forms part of the Cecil Beaton Collection, brought together by the society photographer Sir Cecil Beaton With great energy and determination, Beaton contacted the well-dressed elite of Europe and North America to help create this lasting monument to the art of dress.

The Collection was exhibited in , accompanied by a catalogue that detailed its enormous range. Its fresh youthful style conjures up images of summer holidays during the years before the First World War Lounge suit jacket, waistcoat, trousers Designer unknown Great Britain Woven tweed with a vertical stripe; Jacket Lined with twill ; Waistcoat Lined with linen with a narrow black and wider brown stripe Museum no.

The lounge suit became popular during the s because of its easy comfort. It originated from the 'lounging jacket', which was cut to fit the waist without a waist seam by means of a long dart from under the arm to the waist. By the s the jacket was worn with matching waistcoat and trousers and had become popular for informal wear.

In the early 20th century it replaced the frock coat and the morning coat. The owner of this lounge suit was Sir Max Beerbohm , the English essayist, caricaturist and master of a polished prose style. At the very beginning of thes it was fashionable for women to wear high-waisted, rather barrel-shaped outfits, and tunic-style tops were popular. However, between the waistline dropped to hip level, obscuring natural curves for a tubular, androgynous look.

Young, very fashionable 'flappers' wore their hems at knee level, with neutral coloured stockings and colourful garters.

Hemlines drifted between ankle and mid-calf for the duration of the decade. Jewellery was prominent, including large brooches and long strings of pearls. Hair was worn bobbed, sometimes close to the head, and the distinctive cloche hat a close fitting, bell-shaped hat was very popular. Men wore narrow-cut lounge suits, with pointed collars turned down, and plain or simply patterned modern knot ties.

Cloth caps were popular amongst the working class, though trilbies or homburgs were worn by the middle classes. Hair was cut very short at the sides, parted severely from the centre or the side and smoothed down with oil and brilliantine, or combed back over the top of the head.

This fashion plate is from the journal 'Gazette du Bon Ton'. The journal featured articles about theatre, travel and other pursuits of interest to the leisured wealthy, but the main emphasis was always on fashion.

It was published from November to the summer of , and again from January to December The complete run consisted of 12 volumes. It was intended for the Parisian elite, and introduced fashions in colour plates such as this one.

The contributors included many prominent artists of the time, and the colour plates anticipated the Art Deco style that was to dominate the s. The illustrations were stencilled by hand with watercolour, in a technique known as pochoir. It shows a man in evening dress, with tails and a top hat.

It is a simple and effective image of a tall and elegant man smoking. The only splash of colour is his yellow glove. Despite the simplicity of the image, it communicates glamour.

This is a design for the cover of 'Pearson's Magazine'. Henry Haley produced several cover designs for this popular publication in the s. It clearly appealed to a largely female readership.

Here Haley uses the image of a woman driver to represent a modern outlook and an independent lifestyle. She is wearing a fashionable cloche hat and sports a bob. The company made paper bags, card boxes, labels and tickets for a range of different clothes stores. Sometimes they employed artists to illustrate these items. This example was drawn by a commercial artist at the little-known Roseland Studio in the s. It shows a glamorous young woman wearing an elegant fur-trimmed suit, together with the latest cloche hat and bobbed hair.

Her outfit is tubular with a drop-waist, reflecting the rather androgynous styles of the decade. Such an image was clearly designed to appeal to fashionable customers and to reflect well on the clothes store which used it.

It shows a glamorous young woman wearing a fur-trimmed coat in the latest style, together with a cloche hat and bobbed hair. The coat is straight and rather tubular, with a dropped waist, reflecting the androgynous silhouette of the decade.

Photograph, fashion study Baron de Meyer Museum no. This fashion study shows two models at a garden table, sporting wide brimmed summer hats over fashionable bobbed hair. Their dresses featured dropped waists and a straight silhouette, typical of the decade, when busts were flattened and curves disguised. Liberty's - a trendsetting fashion store in Regent Street, London - opened their dress department in under the guidance of the designer and former architect E.

Godwin , a crusader for dress reform. This coat was especially designed and made for Mrs Hazel Moorcroft. The block-printed design of the lining fabric first appeared in about and was constantly re-issued - most recently in the s. The cloche hat worn with it here is very typical of the s. Evening dress Callot Soeurs About Paris Printed silk voile, embroidered with sequins and beads, and trimmed with lace Museum no. Superb materials and top-quality workmanship combine to create this stunning evening dress.

Light-reflecting beads and sequins had long been popular decoration for evening fabrics, but in the s the fashion reached its peak.

The embroidery follows the lines of the printed floral design to enhance the pattern and catch the light. This dress was designed by the fashion house Callot Soeurs. Four sisters, Marie, Marthe, Regina and Joséphine, had opened a lace shop in The eldest, Marie Madame Gerber , developed the couture side of the business at 9 avenue Matignon, Paris, where it continued until the mid s.

The sisters worked with exquisite and unusual materials, including Chinese silks and rubberised gabardine. Callot Soeurs was also known for its use of lace and decorated sheer fabrics. This pair of ladies' evening shoes, in gold kid, is painted and lined with grey kid. The s produced some of the most exciting shoes of the century, with tremendous variety in cut, colour and ornamentation. Most shoes were high-heeled, even for dancing, necessitating straps over the instep.

Bright colour mixes reached a peak by Evening ensemble Nabob About London Silk georgette, the belt embroidered with metal thread Museum no. Skirts with handkerchief points were particularly fashionable in the late s. They were forerunners of the longer skirts that became generally accepted by Soft, light-silk fabrics proved ideal for this bias-cut flowing style.

Diaphanous silks were usually worn with matching petticoats, or laid over the foundation of the dress. Afternoon dress La Samaritaine retailers Paris Silk georgette, printed with a floral motif, hand and machine sewn Museum no. This below-the-knee day dress made of printed silk chiffon is slightly gathered at a normal waistline on an elastic band.

The skirt has a minutely pleated yoke that runs across the hips. There are two sets of fine pleats on the front of the skirt, which flares out slightly towards the knees. The printed pattern of waved bands of massed flower-heads is carefully disposed in all pieces of the dress.

On the bodice, sleeves and skirt yoke the bands run diagonally, while on the skirt's bias-cut gores they run horizontally. The minute pin-tucks on the bodice, sleeves and skirt are hand sewn. This design is typical of the years following , when flowing summer dresses in gossamer fabrics with floral prints were popular. Such delicate silks are extremely difficult to handle and sew, demanding a great deal of skill and patience. This sleeveless dress has a low square neckline, which was popular in the the mid s.

Its straight bodice is embroidered with a design that reveals the influence of Egyptian patterns. Jean Patou was born in Normandy, France, the son of a tanner. His uncle owned a fur business, which Patou joined. In he opened a small dressmaking business, Maison Parry, in Paris and sold his entire opening collection to an American buyer.

His career was interrupted by the First World War of , but in he reopened his salon, this time under his own name. His collections continued to be a great success. Throughout the s he also consistently championed the shorter length of skirt that did much to stimulate the demand for stockings. His long-waisted evening dresses with their emphasis on luxurious design and rich decoration were worn by famous actresses, such as Louise Brooks, Constance Bennett and Mary Pickford.

Patou died in , and his brother-in-law, Raymond Barbàs, took over the business. In the artistic direction of the company was taken over by Michael Goma. Evening dress suit Charles Wallis Ltd. By the s the full evening dress suit had crystallised into a recognisable and lasting style. It consisted of a tail coat, a white waistcoat and trousers to match the coat. The coat was cut as double-breasted but was always worn open. Changes in fashion did occur, but they affected details such as the width of the lapel or the cut of the trousers.

This suit was worn by the husband of the donor. She dated each item in her collection and also sent the accessories that she considered appropriate for each outfit. Mr Rothfield died in He was a slim, elegantly dressed man, who was meticulous about his dress.

Dress Jeanne Lanvin Paris Black silk taffeta trimmed with machine-embroidered silk chenille and cream silk georgette bows and bands Museum no. Throughout the s Jeanne Lanvin excelled in the creation of ultra-feminine dresses with fitted bodices and long, full skirts, known as robes de style, of which this evening dress is an example. The black fine silk taffeta dress with boat neckline, and small, capped half-sleeves fastens with poppers down the left side.

A pair of immense fern-like fronds are machine-embroidered in furry cream chenille on the skirt, and the cream colour is echoed in floating bands caught in silk georgette bows at the right sleeve and left waist. Paul Poiret was born in Paris. He opened his own salon after serving an apprenticeship for Douçet and working for Charles Frederick Worth He was one of the most creative fashion designers of the 20th century. He also revived fashion illustration, founded a school for the decorative arts and even diversified into perfume.

He led the forefront of the artistic fashion movement away from the curvilinear silhouette of the early s towards a longer, leaner line. His brilliantly coloured, looser clothes, often inspired by the 'orientalist' enthusiasm for Eastern fashions and traditions, were extremely popular. The use of rayon trimmings on this garment is interesting.

In spite of the rapid development in the 20th century of man-made fibres, couturiers tended to remain faithful to costly natural fabrics, with the exception of trimmings, such as the braid on this dress. Braid manufacturers were among the first bulk buyers of artificial silk, and were then joined by hosiery and underwear manufacturers. By the s an increasing number of couturiers were attracted to the newly available and sophisticated rayon dress goods. The label in this little black dress simply reads 'Lord and Taylor'.

This was the name of a prestigious department store on Fifth Avenue in New York. They imported Paris original haute couture high fashion and excellent copies of French models. They also sold unnamed ready-to-wear American designs. An illustration in the American edition of the fashion magazine Vogue' of 15 April identifies this dress. It was called 'Minuit Sonne' and designed by Drecoll. The dress is made of fine black silk voile and decorated with strass a brilliant paste used for imitation stones.

The diamanté butterfly bursting over the hips is a perfect example of the Art Deco style. The sleeveless design and low, scooped neck would have allowed the wearer to remain cool during even the most energetic dances of the s.

And as she danced, the drifting tunic top and the central drapery of the skirt would have flowed with her. The multi-talented Mariano Fortuny was a painter, theatre designer, photographer, inventor and scientist, although he is best known as a creator of extraordinary fabrics and clothes. In he registered his design based on the Ionic version of the Greek classical garment the chiton for the 'Delphos' dress, of which this glistening black columnar example is a typical representative.

The dress consists of five narrow widths of pleated silk hand-sewn into a tube just 47 cm wide. The neck and sleeves are adjusted to fit by concealed draw-strings, while a black rouleau, threaded with Venetian glass beads, laces the outer sleeves.

The drop-waist androgyny of the previous decade gave way to a slinky femininity in the s. Parisian couturiers introduced the bias-cut into their designs, which caused the fabric to skim over the body's curves.

Long, simple and clinging evening gowns, made of satin were popular. Often the dresses had low scooping backs. During the day, wool suits with shoulder pads, and fluted knee-length skirts were worn. Fox fur stoles and collars were popular, as were small hats embellished with decorative feather or floral details, worn at an angle. Hair was set short and close to the head, often with gentle 'finger waves' at the hairline. Sports and beach-wear influenced fashionable dress, and the sun-tan was coveted for the first time.

Men now generally wore three-piece suits for work or formal occasions only. Two-piece suits without a waistcoat and casual day wear were becoming increasingly common, including knitted cardigans, tank-tops, and soft collared or open necked shirts. For the first time it was not obligatory to wear a tie. Trousers were very wide, with turned up hems and sharp creases down the leg. They were belted high at the abdomen. It was common for men to be clean-shaven, and bowler hats were now generally only seen by city businessmen.

Couturier clothing like this was custom-made for each individual client from the finest materials, and was out of most women's reach.

However, couture influenced the silhouette and style of more affordable fashions and emulated aspects of it. The prevalent s style, pioneered by couturiere Madeleine Vionnet, 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, with fluted skirts and features like scoop backs.

The line was simple and uncluttered and few trimmings or accessories were worn. This evening dress is by Elsa Schiaparelli, who was known for her shock tactics and love of surrealism. Here, Schiaparelli has taken the intimate padding over the breasts which would normally be concealed, and used it to decorate the outside of a severe brown crepe dress. Crepe was very fashionable for both day and evening dresses during this decade.

Evening ensemble dress and shoulder cape Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel , Paris Satin, embroidered with sequins, with satin panels and sashes Museum no. The line was simple and uncluttered and few accessories were worn. We usually associate Chanel's name with her practical classic suits, which first appeared in about She also created extravagant evening wear such as this sequinned dress and cape.

The combination of glistening black sequins and scarlet satin panels is very dramatic. The rows of overlapping 'fish-scale' sequins emphasise the supple, falling lines of the outfit. The short, semi-circular cape has a scarlet satin lining. During the first half of the s, evening dresses were designed to wrap women in luxurious, body-hugging sheaths, replacing the short, flat square gowns of the s. Evening gowns were mostly sleeveless, often displaying a bare back or a low neckline and inevitably touching the floor.

White or pastel colours, fashionable in the s and early s, soon gave way to stronger, more acidic colours. After championing the modern, sporty and androgynous woman of the s, Chanel successfully ventured into a luxurious and more feminine fashion in the s. 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.

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