1920s Fashion In Art


1920s Hair

1920s Hairstyles History- Long Hair to Bobbed Hair

1924 haircut
1924
The Morning Paper (1929) – Hans Hassenteufel. The bobbed hair and the newspaper are acts of rebellion.
Charles Bosseron Chambers, Bob, 1920s
Jacob Kramer (1892-1962) Girl With Bobbed Hair, 1925
The Elks Magazine Cover, Feb 1926 by Edmund Davenport
La Vie Parisienne 1923 Flappers Dancing

A Variety Of Skirt Lengths

Young flappers liked short skirts but mid-calf was another popular length, made for tall, skinny bodies.

anonymous illustration from the Art-Goût-Beauté Art, Taste, Beauty Fashion Periodical, 1920s
anonymous illustration from the Art-Goût-Beauté – Art, Taste, Beauty Fashion Periodical, 1920s
1923 fashion dainty frocks in new summer colours

“Exoticism”

An Evening Soirée, Dean Cornwell (1892-1960) 1921 mirror
An Evening Soirée, Dean Cornwell (1892-1960) 1921
Jewellery catalogue 1927
Jewellery catalogue 1927

Fur

Illustration by Earl Christy 1920s
Illustration by Earl Christy 1920s

1920s Children’s Fashion

Clothes in children’s catalogues offer a glimpse into how the wealthy classes were dressing their children.

1920s school dresses

The dresses above look quite similar to girls’ dresses which came back into fashion in the 1960s.

The 1960s version was likewise a tunic style of dress with dropped waist (or no waist). The a-line shape, or a pencil shape, came back into fashion at the turn of the decade 1959-1960 and remained all through the Kennedy years.

The difference between the 1920s and 1960s dresses: different colours, simpler styles, new polyester fabrics. Hemlines were higher.

Tall, Lean, Attenuated Bodies

Fashion artists of the 1920s weren’t especially interested in realistic bodies. However, they did do something for gender expansive and gender non-conforming people.

Mistinguett – Cabaret Performer – Publicity Poster – art by Guy de Rougemont – c 1927
Georges Léonnec (French, 1881 – 1940) ‘A Fashionable Couple’ from French magazine ‘La Via Parisienne’ 1920s

Gender fluidity and how we have chosen to express, through the language of Attire that fluidity is, of course, hardly a new idea. During the 1920s and 30s however, the notion was given a much broader playing field than it had been previously in Western culture, though it came to an abrupt halt with the onset of WWII. I came across this magazine cover from 27 March of 1930. The magazine? Le Sourire, The Smile. The image is of a clearly well-heeled couple of people, one expressing an overtly Jazz Age femininity. The other person remains a question mark. We do not know of a certainty if this is a binary identified male or female person, or if they identify differently. That is, obviously the point of the image.

from Attire’s Mind

French fashion illustrations c.1920s George Barbier 3
French fashion illustrations c.1920s George Barbier
French fashion illustrations c.1920s George Barbier
French fashion illustrations c.1920s George Barbier

The seemingly relentless attenuation of the figure that has dominated fashion illustration has never been confined to womenswear drawings. Menswear illustrations, like this one from 1921 have stretched the male form as well, creating a singularly ectomorphic view of fashionable male appearance, just as much at odds with the reality as such drawings are of women. It is also true that the concept is hardly just a 20th century one. Illustrations from centuries previous show a similar, but less extreme lengthening of the body. Such imagery is often accompanied by a concomitant reduction in the size of the hands and feet. In many cultures small hands and feet are associated with elevated status and refinement, while large hands and feet get connected to manual labor.

from Attire’s Mind
Metropolis Berlin by Jeanne Mammen 1920s
Metropolis Berlin by Jeanne Mammen 1920s
Erté Aphrodite 1920s
Erté Aphrodite 1920s
Illustration by Pierre Brissaud untitled, The Ties 1921

Peacock Feathers

Peacock feathers went well with 1920s patterns and continued to be fashionable into the 1930s.

Lady with a Peacock Fan by Gaspar Camps 1920s
Lady with a Peacock Fan by Gaspar Camps 1920s

Everybody Wore Hats

Every Girl's Story Book illustrations by Thomas Henry He snatched up his bag and jumped out by Thomas Henry 1920s
Every Girl’s Story Book illustrations by Thomas Henry He snatched up his bag and jumped out by Thomas Henry 1920s

Except when relaxing in a private space, hats were expected.

Tea in the Afternoon by Charles Edward Chambers, 1920s
Tea in the Afternoon by Charles Edward Chambers, 1920s
Verlaine - French Ladies Wear Advertisement - art by Fernand Simeon - 1920 fashion
Verlaine – French Ladies Wear Advertisement – art by Fernand Simeon – 1920

1920

HENRY CLIVE 1920
HENRY CLIVE 1920
Georges Barbier (1882-1932), French painter, fashion designer and illustrator, Dangerous routes, 1920
Fred L. Packer, VIVAUDO, Mavis Talc – Perfume print ad, 1920
Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post May 1, 1920 The Ouija Board

1921

Life magazine June 1921 art by Coles Phillips golf
Life magazine June 1921 art by Coles Phillips
1921
Art by Maud Tousey Fangel
George Barbier

1922

Cover illustrator unknown, 1922
After the rain the sun, Vintage June 1922 Cover for Vogue, Illustration by Meserole
The Saturday Evening Post, May 20, 1922. Art by Norman Rockwell
Maclean’s – April Fool’s Day, 1922
Jello 1922 Art by Angus MacDonnal
Art by Jay W. Weaver 1922
A page from the 1922 Fall Winter Simpson Catalog
1922 House Dresses
Woman with Spanish Shawl, J.C. Leyendecker, 1922
Estey Residence Pipe Organ Console 1922 detail

1923

Allen A Hosiery & Underwear 1923 W.H. Hinton
Allen A Hosiery & Underwear 1923 W.H. Hinton
1923, Turned into Better Homes and Gardens
1923, Turned into Better Homes and Gardens

1924

Illustration for 'The Parisian Life', Pierre Brissaud, 1924 swing tree
Illustration for ‘The Parisian Life’, Pierre Brissaud, 1924
Cover design and illustration by P & L Studio, 1924
Pratt and Lambert Varnish 1924 Art by Coles Phillips

1925

My love, René Vincent. 1925
My love, René Vincent. 1925
by Kurt Ard (b. 1925) The Saturday Evening Post cover May 6, 1961
1925 Ladies Home Journal McCallum Silk Hosiery Ad, illustration by Malaga Grenet
J.C. LEYENDECKER A Stroll in the Snow 1925
McClelland Barclay (American, 1891-1943) holeproof hosier for Life Magazine 1925
Earl Christy

1926

Oh how she could play a ukelele by Benny Davis and Harry Akst, Art by Leff (Sydney Lefkowitz), 1926
Oh how she could play a ukelele by Benny Davis and Harry Akst, Art by Leff (Sydney Lefkowitz), 1926
The Four Elements written by George Barbier,1926, in Falbalas and bells Present, Past and Future modes
The Four Elements written by George Barbier,1926, in Falbalas and bells Present, Past and Future modes
The Four Elements written by George Barbier,1926, in Falbalas and bells Present, Past and Future modes
The Four Elements written by George Barbier,1926, in Falbalas and bells Present, Past and Future modes
Illustration by John Holmgren (1897-1963) 1926
Judge – Magazine Cover – art by John Holmgren – 1926
S W Reynolds

1927

Collier's, June 25, 1927 art by Frank Godwin
Frank Godwin
John Vassos
Brunelleschi
Henry Clive
Georges Léonnec (1881 – 1940). La Vie Parisienne, 12 Novembre 1927
Gyula Várady 1927
Men’s fashion catalogue, 1927

1928

Russell Patterson illustration for Oct 1928 Woman's Home Companion piece illustrated Corinna Finds Employment by Alice Duer Miller
Russell Patterson illustration for Oct 1928 Woman’s Home Companion piece illustrated Corinna Finds Employment by Alice Duer Miller
Walter Beach Humphrey cover Collier’s Weekly, April 28, 1928
Woman’s World March 1928. Art by Miriam Story Hurford
From Magazine Blanco y Negro. Illustrated by Ramón Manchón. Published in 1928
Paul Colin
George Leonnec
Art by René Vincent 1928 Paris

1929

E. Harding Illustration  in The Tatler, England, March 6, 1929
E. Harding Illustration in The Tatler, England, March 6, 1929
La Vie Parisienne – La Reine du Patin – January 1929 Georges Leonnac illustrator fashion
Parisian Life, December 29, 1929. Illustrator Georges Léonnec (1881-1940)
Pierre Mourgue

FURTHER READING

The Flapper Queens by Trina Robbins review – a luscious curation, Guardian review

Lemon girl young adult novella

READ AT MY OTHER BLOG

Header: Jean Pagès, Illustration of the cover for Vogue magazine, c 1925