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The thirties 1930-1940

The great depression Emergence of sports wear Surrealism Bauhaus movement World war II

Dr. Nidhi L Sharda, NIFT Bangalore

STYLE : development of Art Deco beginning of “ready to wear” fashion FASHION DESIGNERS: Coco Channel, Elsa Schiaparelli , Madeleine Vionnet , Mc Cardell POPULAR MUSIC: Jazz , Big Band DANCE : Foxtrot, Tango, Valse , Boogie Woogie ART: Surrealism, Constructivism, Bauhaus movement

• Double-breasted suits for men. Wide lapels, panama hat (boater). Sports coat, slacks. Use of mixed jackets and pants gain popularity for casual occasions as it extends the use of clothing during the depression. Dresses' mid - calf or longer. Narrow, or a moderate flare. Lots of natural waists. Bias cut, unusual seams with a small hat perched to one side. Note: diagonal pattern of stripes Thanks to Chanel - knit dress- ensemble, jacket and dress combination Cowl or large T - neck ensemble on Ginger Rogers Assorted playwear. Backless, halter-top, canvas tennis shoes Pants for women, flared at hem, worn for extreme casual wear only. Also called beach pajamas.

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afternoon. 1930 Sears Catalogue admonished. The stock market crash of 1929 affected the available income families had to spend on fashions. The Autumn. many people had different outfits for morning. "Thrift is the spirit of the day. • • • .The Great depression • • • Fashion of the 1930s was directly influenced by the Wall Street Crash of October 24. The beginning of the decade saw women sewing more." The focus turned away from new clothing for every season and moved to reusing and remaking the clothes one already owned. (Before this time. Consumers purchased clothing items for necessity instead of fashion. Clothing was mended and patched before being replaced. and evening). 1929 and the subsequent Depression. It was also during this time that the practice of changing clothes several times each day fell out of style. Reckless spending is a thing of the past.

Hyde. In a matter of years women were back to wearing more conservative clothing. . movies had become horror focused (Frankenstein. Dracula) and consumerism took a big setback as people lost their jobs and became worried for their future. Dr Jekyll & Mr. King Kong.The stock market crashed in 1929 and the Great Depression shortly followed. Freaks.

The look is tailored and close to the body. morals tightened and hemlines dropped.The 30s also brought soft curves from the bust to a natural waist that was often belted. . In 1929 when the Great Depression began.

The mantra was "less is more. Ruffles and gown cut on the bias came back into fashion. sensual romance in women's clothing. bringing a super-feminine aesthetic to fashion In both 20s and 30s a lady would never go out without a hat. interesting seams and feminine hair. .The 1930s were a time of understated." This is the time of the small pillbox hat.

• Fashionable sleek day dress of 1936. . ladylike appearance.The Female Form Returns to 1930s Fashion • In the 1930s there was a return to a more genteel. Budding rounded busts and waistline curves were seen and hair became softer and prettier as hair perms improved.

sweet and tidy by day with a return to real glamour at night. . Clothes were feminine.Foreheads which had been hidden by cloche hats were revealed and adorned with small plate shaped hats.


The influence of fashion around 1930 can still be felt to this day. sweeping skirts and detail were the order of the day.Nipped waistlines. . Depression era fashion combined ingenuity with sleek lines and synthetic easy-care fabrics.

The classic summer dress or tea gown is a overdress of translucent fabric like silk chiffon or organdy with a plain slip-like underdress. .

or add pleating to the sides in order to add fullness. designers would accentuate the hemline by cutting it into a handkerchief hem (varied length). evening dresses fell to full-length. Arms were free or covered. Sometimes. .At night.


The hemlines reached the bottom of the calf within a year. . Below the knee pleats and godets fell from panels so gave fullness at the hemline.Skirts were frequently longer at the back than the front.

The introduction of rayon The introduction of rayon as an affordable alternative to silk. Dances like the samba and rumba demanded more flexible undergarments and hastened the demand for elastic fabrics. as chemise and petticoat gave rise to slip and panty. Underwear continued to modify with fashion. . and the increased production of ready-to-wear fashions eased the effects of economic depression.

1938 .Silk evening dress. 1930.Channle Wool rayon lace evening dress.

.Jackets were nipped in at the waist by design or belt.

The Simple and Elegant Daywear vs. The Evening Glamour Look of the 1930’s .

hold alls. soft hats and knitted bathing suits were all given the designer touch.Beach Fashion 1930s: Health and fitness was an important aspect of thirties lifestyle. Beach wraps. As sun worshipping became a common leisure pursuit fashion answered the needs of sun seekers by making chic outfits for the beach and its surrounds. .

One of the most important elements of 1930's fashion is the bias cut. John Galliano.Madeleine Vionnet The most influential French fashion designers of the 20th century with her famed “House of Vionnet ” which opened in 1912 and operated through the late 1930′s. Christian Dior. the bias cut defined both women's day and evening wear of the 1930's. . Karl Lagerfeld. and Cristobal Balenciaga all name Vionnet as a major influence. Introduced by Vionnet in 1927.

. While many designers sought to conceal a woman's chest. the bias cut allowed fabric to cling to the contours of the body. waist and hips in the 1920's. the bias cut helped reintroduce curves into popular fashion.Unlike the loose straight-lined fashions of the 1920's. This clinging effect gave clothing a sleek and elegant look.

1930. Wedding gown. . crepe-de-chines. creating a flare and fluidity of drapery that other methods could not achieve.Using Madeleine Vionnet and the Cross Cut Bias Method designers were able to produce magnificent gowns in satins. crepes and chiffons by cross cutting the fabric. silks.

.Some evening garments made women look like Grecian goddesses whilst others made them look like half naked sexy vamps.


By late 190’30s the style was moving to the back area of the body with the use of halter necklines and high-necked but backless . Dresses cut with fitted midriffs or seams below the bust were used and influenced the focus on breadth at the shoulder. though. There was still some softening to be seen. with artful tailoring coming to the forefront.Embellishment by pattern-cutting and design overtook trendiness.

but would grow longer in later years.For day wear. Often. although flats and tie-ups were also mid-level heel. due to the influence of the flapper's favorite "bob" haircut. they were A-line. . falling in the area of mid-calf or right below the knee later in the decade Shoes favored a low. Hair was still short to medium length in 1930. ladies favored suits or dresses.

Elegance does not consist in putting on a new dress. Fashion is made to become unfashionable.A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous. Coco Chanel .

This is a 1930′s Chanel ad featuring Coco herself at the Ritz .

In the 1930′s CoCo Chanel launched Breton stripes into the fashion mainstream after becoming inspired by a visit to the French Coast. .

Schiaparelli was a lover of ground breaking fashion and modern ideas. most famously with Salvador Dalí. .Elsa Schiaparelli : Modern art. particularly Dada and Surrealism. She worked with a number of contemporary artists to develop her imaginative designs. provided a significant source of inspiration for Schiaparelli.

. S. . The metal zip was invented in 1893 and by 1917 it had been fairly timidly utilized for shoes. tobacco pouches and U. They quickly became universally utilized and have become an extremely dependable type of fastening. Navy windcheater outdoor jackets.In 1933 she promoted the clasp we call the zip or zipper. useful and extremely fresh. Her use of the new plastic coloured zip in fashion clothing was both ornamental.

. One of her fun icons was the lobster.Schiaparelli elevated fashion to Surrealist art. She created along with artist Salvador Dali a stunning gown with a giant red lobster on the skirt.

Skeleton Dress In 1938 was The Tears Dress. threedimensional rips in the fabric printed on it . which had false.

she was the first woman to design/sell an evening suit. though Chanel may have beat her to it. .

Some of her noteworthy creations were the desk suit complemented with drawers for pockets. She became known for her exciting designs since then. She also made silk dresses coloured with flies.hat .Schiaparelli became popular with her black knitted white bow. Shoe. and the shoe-shaped hat.

German Fashion Magazine. 1930 .Hairstyles of the 1930s also became more feminine as perms became more sophisticated to bring out the softness and beauty of the hair.

from around 1934 milliners looked to Europe for inspiration Cloche hats remained popular until about 1933 while short hair remained popular for many women until late in the 1930s. turbans emerged. The broad brim and also the high crown were lost to nearly a generation. Fashionable hats range from the pillbox toque. . Towards the end of the decade. trimmed turban. and Basque beret.Hats were worn at an angle. Pill boxes became popular along with brimmed hats. but.

Later in the decade. "During the 1930s men also began to discard their undershirts supposedly because Clark Gable took off his shirt in a movie and only his bare chest was visible. Warm shirts in large plaids. and early in the 30s the single breasted jacket was the male look.Menswear was also influenced by movies and its actors. double breasted jackets became popular yet again and the front of the man's jacket was higher .

Men almost universally wore a suit outfit with a tie when out in public and very often when lounging around at home as well.Hats became an expected part of just about any outfit in the 1930s and that is reflected in the photographs we have of the time. . Every effort was made to look successful and well dressed went into a 1930s wardrobe to counter the general feeling of despair and failure that came with the Great Depression.

In the 1930s. . with doublebreasted suits. and tuxedos with tails setting the standard for how a gentleman should dress. full-cut trousers. bigger was better.



casual wear typically worn for spectator sports. Since the 1930s the term is used to describe both day and evening fashions of varying degrees of formality that demonstrate this relaxed approach whilst remaining appropriate wear for many business or social occasions. • . The term became popular in the 1920s to describe relaxed.Emergence of sports wear • Sportswear has been called America's main contribution to the history of fashion design.

. Richard Martin described these designers as aiming to produce clothes demonstrating "problemsolving ingenuity and realistic lifestyle applications". 1930s designers such as Clare Potter and Claire McCardell were among the first American designers to gain name recognition through their innovative clothing designs.The precursors of true sportswear emerged in New York before the Second World War.

a tennis player. .women’s sportswear fashions following the lead of sportswomen such as Suzanne Lenglen. whose name was synonymous with sleeveless shirts and short skirts (compared to previous styles) while on the court.

and even nudism. sports. .A new passion for hiking. invites briefer sportswear. sunbathing.

Bathing suits are slashed and backless. . Womens gloves usually matched their shoes and handbags. Bare midriffs are everywhere in the late 30's. made of linen and lastex yarn.

McCardell has been called America's greatest sportswear designer in the arena of ready-to-wear clothing in the 20th century.

The term 'ready-to-wear' was not yet widely used, but the boutiques already described such clothes as being 'for sport'.

and stylish women’s sportswear within the constraints of mass-production. a democratic and casual approach to fashion that rejected the formality of French couture. she was known for designing functional. . affordable. and is today acknowledged as the creator of the "American Look".From the 1930s to the 1950s.


Their fairytale lives portrayed in film gave observers an escape from reality. .Hollywood continued to influence consumers with the popularity of movie stars such as Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire.

literature film and music of many countries and languages. as well as political thought and practice. the movement spread around the globe. philosophy and social theory. . From the 1920s onward. eventually affecting the visual arts.Surrealism Surrealism is a cultural movement that began in the early 1920s. and is best known for the visual artworks and writings of the group members.

a surreality. The movement was founded in 1924 by André Breton as a means of joining dream and fantasy to everyday reality to form "an absolute reality.“ he concluded that the unconscious was the wellspring of the imagination .Surrealism Surrealism developed in reaction against the "rationalism" that had led to World War I.

Surrealism provided a major alternative to the contemporary. . highly formalistic Cubist movement and was largely responsible for perpetuating in modern painting the traditional emphasis on content. unexpected juxtapositions With its emphasis on content and free form.Surrealist works feature the element of surprise.

dream like themes and hallucinations .Characteristics of surrealism include inexplicable happenings.

A 20th-century literary and artistic movement that attempts to express the workings of the subconscious and is characterized by fantastic imagery and incongruous juxtaposition of subject matter. .

as many of the artists involved fled. Canada and Israel (particularly in White City. was a school in Germany that combined crafts and the fine arts.• Bauhaus movement The Bauhaus movement started just after the First World War and was inspirational in pulling together artists. At that time the German term Bauhaus. literally "house of construction“ stood for "School of Building". Staatliches Bauhaus commonly known simply as Bauhaus. architects and many other thinkers under one creative roof. by the Nazi regime. designers." . or were exiled. and was famous for the approach to design that it publicized and taught. • • • "Specialists are people who always repeat the same mistakes. the United States. The Bauhaus school was founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar The Bauhaus had a major impact on art and architecture trends in Western Europe. It operated from 1919 to 1933. Tel Aviv) the decades following its demise.

“The ultimate aim of all creative activity is the building”.The moving spirit was Walter Gropius. This was a new way of thinking. engineers. who wrote in the school’s first manifesto. as artists were traditionally separated from designers. architects and engineers. . Gropius announced his intention of starting the Bauhaus as a shamelessly elitist ‘Republic of Intelligence’.

The Bauhaus movement was founded on the principle of creating a “total” work of art .

Sonia Biacchi's Bauhaus dreams .

of the American Studio Josef Hoffman. of the The Wiener Werkstätte .George Nakashima.

of Memphis .Tom Dixon. of Functional Art Ettore Sottsass.

recognized the necessity (and the value) of accepting the fact and making the most of it. that began in nineteenth-century Britain. on the other hand. hoped for a return to an idealized past. The importance of industrialized production and its aesthetic effects was a central question for both movements.Arts and Crafts Movement vs Bauhaus Movement • • • • • • The Arts and Crafts Movement. Most importantly. coming later. that started in Germany in the 1920s. had many goals in common. the Bauhaus embraced the industrial atmosphere of its time and attempted to transcend it. The early Arts and Crafts Movement. but this was also the main point on which they disagreed. But the Bauhaus. and the Bauhaus movement. Both movements agreed that their times were aesthetically impoverished and both agreed that this was largely the result of the rise of industrial civilization. Both movements were interested in uniting all the arts and crafts and giving them equal dignity. . both movements believed in beautiful design and well-made work as an enhancement of life. while the original Arts and Crafts movement largely rejected the machine age and all its productions. Both movements were also deeply concerned with the role of the artist as worker and with the nature of work in general. But. Both movements held that the industrialized production of goods had transformed the world.

craft.One of the main objectives of the Bauhaus was to unify art. and therefore industrial and product design were important components. The machine was considered a positive element. . and technology.

including all of the great powers eventually forming two opposing military alliances.World war II Second World War was a global military conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945. It was the most widespread war in history. with more than 100 million military personnel mobilised. the Allies and the Axis. which involved most of the world's nations. .


Stalin.• Hitler. . Roosevelt.

.In African American athlete who won four gold medals in track-and-field at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin and put to shame Hitler's Aryan superiority message.