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Mid & Late 1910s Fashion



In the mid and late 1910s,
hairstyle trends took
three different paths:

1) Most women wore their hair up in a low, loose chignon.

2) The second group, consisting of the young and the young-at-heart, favored the ultra-feminine bows and ringlets of movie stars like Mary Pickford.

3) The third group were the "ultra-modern" women who took their cue from Paris and (gasp!) cut their hair! In 1914, dancer Irene Castle saw fashionable Parisian women wearing bobbed hair, and she brought the style to America. During the war, women who worked in factories often adopted this style for practical reasons, and they fell in love with it.

In the middle of the decade, fashions began to change. World War I played a large part in bringing modern fashions to American women. While the men were fighting in Europe, women took over their jobs, and a factory was no place for long skirts or tight, restrictive clothing.

The S-shaped silhouette was gone. Dresses were comfortable, with shorter hemlines, natural waists and fuller skirts. The high collars of the previous decade were replaced by square and V-shaped necklines. Embellishments were limited to large collars and cuffs, scarves, belts and perhaps a clip-on rose.






Wide barrel-shaped skirts were fashionable in 1916 and 1917




Lady Duff Gordon Corsets, 1917

In the late 1910s, fashions emphasized the natural shape of a woman's body. We still wore corsets to achieve an overall slim appearance, but they no longer forced our bodies into unnatural shapes.

The corset's days were numbered, however. During World War I, women who worked in factories needed freedom of movement. They began to wear two-piece undergarments consisting of a girdle with garters and the forerunner of the modern bra.

Stockings were made of wool, cotton, lisle, gauze or silk. Most women wore black stockings, although lighter colors were becoming popular for spring and summer. They were held up with garter belts or with garters attached to the bottom of the corset.

Bathing suit




By the mid 1910s, hats no longer sported the overpowering feathers and veils that were popular in 1910. Big picture hats were perfect for frilly feminine looks, while smaller hats were worn with simple dresses. When going for an automobile ride, wearing a large hat that tied under the chin was still a neccessity, because automobiling was still a dirty, dusty hobby.

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Early 1910s Fashion

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