Saturday, June 30, 2012


So I've been pondering Flappers and fashion. And I"m trying to figure out how women went from this kind of clothing... completely covered up and corseted...

Dress 1872 = about 80 pounds of clothing.

 Dress 1907
Dress 1908

To this... in the span of about ten years.... or less. 

Dress 1924

 Dress 1925


Dress 1925 

Dancing the Charleston, driving cars, going out in public unescorted, voting, birth control, going to college. What happened?

Just pondering my grandmother's generation. 



"Time and trouble will tame an advanced young woman, but an advanced old woman is uncontrollable by any earthly force." ~ Dorothy Sayers



  1. Clothing expressed the Lost Generation – everything done to excess; nonconformity the norm. Rather like the Sixties, where women threw away or burned restrictive underwear and dressed exclusively in jeans.

    1. Marcia, that's true. I'm still stuck in the sixties with a closet full of jeans. There's a great scene in the movie "Alice's Restaurant" where Arlo Guthrie gets hit on by an older lady in a girdle and he freaks out.

      I can imagine that sweltering summers in New York were much more pleasant in light weight 1920's fashions then the tight corsets of the Edwardians. (Not to mention the lack of deodorant. Euuh!) ;-)

  2. Great quote by Dorothy Sayers !

  3. Sayers is one of my favorite authors. Peter Whimsey for the swoon. <3

  4. My grandmother.. born in 1881 died in 1979. She saw such changes in everything from dress to cars to men on the moon.
    She had very strict ideas of right and wrong ..and if we used slang in front of her, she was truly shocked.
    I don't think I'll see such changes in my lifetime... and I'm glad!

  5. Can you imagine the freedom they must have felt? Wow..

  6. Good morning!

    Thank you so much for your delightful paper toys!

    Please recheck your research on the weight of clothing in the 19th century. That silk/wool skirt and long jacket you say weighs 80# is nothing of the sort. Even if you were to add the weight of the chemise (less than 1#), corset (no more than 2#), corset cover (again, less than 1#), bloomers (less than 1#), and 2 petticoats (1 at @2# and another at less than 3# if it had a lot of ruffles), you would have less than 10# before you got to the fashion layer. A silk skirt, even with all those ruffles would likely weigh in at less than 5#. The long jacket could weigh a little more than 5# (about what a modern man's properly tailored suit jacket weighs), bringing the fashion layer to, at most, 8 - 10#.

    Weighty enough, but certainly not a staggering 80#!


    MD Smith
    a fan of your paper toys!

  7. Women got the vote around the same time, so, I think it was an expression of overall freedom. Hmmm... Great food for thought.

    Love those dresses - both eras.


  8. What happened? A major life changing event occurred - The Great War or as we more commonly call it today, World War One.

  9. The war to end all wars. And the Influenza epidemic, or Spanish Flu as it was called. I'm thinking it was a "perfect storm" so many things changing all at once.