VINTAGE 101: 1930’s
Compared to the preceding party-saturated decade of the 1920’s, the 1930’s ushered in a severe and sober reality check. The 1929 stock market crash dragged America into one of the most detrimental economic recessions the modern world has ever seen: the Great Depression. Wealthy, middle-class, and poor alike, each and every level of society was negatively affected by this economic downfall.
1930’s fashion was a more practical, straightforward reincarnation of the styles of the previous decade. Skirts were still straight, but longer, mid-calf hemlines were in style. An emphasis was given to the shoulder—-ruffled straps, filmy draped petal sleeves, and bold shoulder pads galore. Evening gowns beheld a medieval influence with low-cut backs and draped, gathered trains. 1930’s fashion was additionally inspired by the Orient, with high necklines, stylized floral designs, and silk fabrics. Furs were still in style, but took a more curved, rounded look. Hair was tightly marceled into perfect short curls. Makeup styles included highly-arched brows and thin dark lipstick.
Girl of the Decade: the Movie Star
Despite the time of general hardship, the filmmaking industry experienced a boom of popularity. People wanted to escape the sadness of their everyday lives and get lost in the thrill of an exciting movie. Young women idolized the svelte glamour of the silver screen stars, which subsequently increased their popularity.
Style Icons of the 1930’s
Not surprisingly, the greatest fashion figures of this decade were involved in the film industry. Joan Crawford, Mae West, Jean Harlow, Bette Davis, and Vivian Leigh were much copied and adored during this time period.
Recreating the 1930’s
Although the 1930’s are a fairly glanced-over fashion decade, you’d be surprised to see how much contemporary styles are influenced by such fashions. The popular halter-style prom dress is practically a carbon-copy of gowns worn by Bette Davis. In the same ways as the 1930’s brought back Grecian-like minimalistic fashion, do the clothes of today echo such simplistic elegance. You can purchase 1930’s-esque fashion items at almost any store you visit!
Looking for more? Try watching some of these legendary 1930’s films:
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