1920’s Fashion

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I have a confession: I don’t much like the 1920’s. It just doesn’t speak to me. Well, that isn’t entirely true. I don’t care for the fashions, mainly due to the drop waists so prevalent at the time. But I love Art Deco, especially when it comes to certain pieces of furniture and architecture.

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As I was researching the style of the 1920’s I noticed there was quite a bit of modern fashion that has been interpreted through the aesthetic of the 1920’s. I am guessing this is mainly due to the popularity of The Great Gatsby movie. Actually I saw a lot more flapper inspired fashion earlier in the year, right when the movie came out. Now the trend is dying out. But of course there will always be garments reminiscent of the decade, you just have to know what to look for.

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As I mentioned before, a dropped waist is the most significant symbol of the 1920’s, at least where fashion is concerned. Women were starting to loosen their corsets, both figuratively and literally and with this freedom, the hourglass shape was lost. This is the main reason I don’t like the fashions of this decade- I just don’t look good in a drop waist. But as I was looking at all the gorgeous gowns the ladies of the period wore, I definitely got inspired by some of their garments. For example the sweater I am wearing (here) is from Anthropologie, but if you look at sweaters in the ’20’s you will see there is a similarity in the cut- long bell sleeves and the hem ends around the thighs. Though a straighter skirt would have been more appropriate for a true Deco look, I didn’t have any in my wardrobe, so I settled for a fuller skirt.

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Though I don’t prefer the clothing of the 1920’s, the accessories are fantastic! I mean check out those shoes (here)! If those aren’t reminiscent of Gatsby, I don’t know what is!

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Seriously, aren’t they gorgeous?

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One of the cooler aspects to living in Los Angeles, is even though we don’t have much history, the history we do have is very glamorous! We still have quite a few stunning examples of Art Deco buildings, including this one which is in the city of Burbank and was built for and is still used as their city hall.

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I thought it would be fun to do this photo shoot in a location that was reminiscent of the 1920’s and this building exceeded all of my expectations.

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As I was taking photos a man asked if I would like to see the not open to the public mural located in the chambers. Um, yes!

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Isn’t it glorious? It had recently been restored and was just breathtaking to behold.

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I end this post with a look-book full of modern garments that I think have a similar style to the fashion of the 1920’s. I attempted to organize it by outfits, so you can see how I would put together an ensemble using Deco components to look vintage and glamorous but not costumey.

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  1. says

    Your sweater and the shoes are stunning! I love the Art Deco style, too. I read a book that took place during WWII in England, and one of the characters had bound her breasts during the 20s, so they were flat and deformed by the 1940s. She shopped at a stylish store, but the clothes didn’t fit her properly. It made me sad to think women’s shapes were once so distorted by fashion, though it still happens today, too.

  2. Debbie says

    The clothes, the building, the artwork, the SHOES!!! Beautiful! Thank you for the building location. I was hoping you’d let us know where it was.

  3. says

    Your take on 1920s style is so lovely and rife with glamour (natch). I adore the classic red and blue palette that you went with, your hairstyle here, and of course those amazing shoes!

    ♥ Jessica

  4. says

    Wonderful take on the flapper-style, Bethany.
    I’d agree with you – these past few month we are seeing much more of the “roaring twenties” fashion, due to the Great Gatsby. From big fashion names to the cheap, no name brands; everyone seem to be “into 1920’s” now.


  5. says

    Love the post, and the building especially–but it would be unjust to dismiss the impact of 1920s fashion on today’s style (much deeper than the transient influence of a 2013 film).

    The Roaring 20s gave us belts on jackets, tighter fitting clothes (in addition to the stereotypical baggy drop waist), rayon, new colors for men (pastel suits!). Christian Dior still uses the Flapper silhouette today. and we can thank this era for the cute shoe obsession and kohl eyeliner, the bob, hats, and hair bangles.

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