Tag Archives: 1910s fashions

Hair Styles for American Girls, World War I Era (Part 1)

Three hairstyles from Delineator, February 1917. One is very high, one has bangs and side-puffs, and one may be — but probably isn’t — a bob.

My usual approach to this blog is to collect a lot of images with something in common, and then thread them together — often with plenty of meandering into by-paths….

The top of a full page of hairstyles for women, Delineator, April 1917.

I  ended up with so many images of 1917 hair styles for European-American women that I’m having trouble dividing them into several posts.

One stream has to do with the remarkable height of some 1917 hairstyles. [And hats.]

A model for Paquin (1917) sports a hair style as extreme as any seen on a runway today.

Another has to do with bobbed hair — pre-1920’s — popularized by dancer Irene Castle and necessitated in Europe by women’s war work in munitions factories. (The U.S. was a late-comer to WW I, so American women didn’t need to adopt shorter hairstyles for safety until 1917.)

Mrs. Vernon Castle  (Irene Castle) was credited with setting the fashion for bobbed hair. From an ad campaign for Corticelli Silks, Delineator, October 1917.

Another view of Irene Castle’s famous bobbed hair; Delineator, ad for Corticelli Silks, November 1917. Both photos are probably from the same photo shoot; she is wearing the same dress.

A third idea I’m wrestling with is the gradual steps toward the bob — from a “fringe” (bangs) in the 1880’s to cutting some of the front hair short (1917) while retaining long hair in back. I suspect that most women took this conservative approach, making the change in increments.

From the Sears, Roebuck catalog, Fall 1917. From the front, the woman on the right appears to have bobbed hair, but her reflection in the mirror shows that her back hair is long and gathered into a bun, secured with a large, fan-shaped comb.

And then I have some ads for products related to hair styles….

The image used with this ad resembles the Paquin model above. It offers to transform your own hair combings into “switches” which could be used to increase the size of your hairdo. Anna Ayers ad from Delineator, March 1917.

A Digression About Hair Combings and Rats

One item often included in an early 20th century Vanity set — or dresser set — was a hair receiver.

A vanity set from Sears, Roebuck, 1917. The hair receiver is at upper right.

It was a jar with a hole in the lid, into which women put their “combings.”

Along with nail files, button hooks, brushes, and containers for cotton balls (No. 8K8744,) containers for hair combings (Nos. 8K8745 and 8K8723) appeared on a lady’s dressing table. Sears, 1917.

That is, when women cleaned hair out of their brushes and combs, they put it into the hair receiver, and, when they had collected enough, they made it into a “rat,” encasing it in a hairnet that matched their hair color and then combing their long hair over the rat to create huge turn-of-the-century hairstyles like those illustrated by Charles Dana Gibson.  The huge hairdos of the 1940’s used them too.

Those Tall 1917 Hair Styles

From an ad for Fashionette hairnets, Delineator, April 1917.

A similar conical style, called the “beehive,” was popular in the 1960s:

“The higher the hair, the closer to Heaven” was a popular saying when “bouffant” hairdos were in fashion. We supported these styles by “ratting” our hair (see “rats,” above). Hairdressers called it “back-combing,” but we always called it “ratting.” You took a strand of hair, pulled it up toward the sky, and, with your other hand, repeatedly ran a comb down it toward your scalp. Any loose hairs were pushed into tangles at the base. Spray with “Aquanette.” Repeat. When your ratted hair was a complete, tangled mess, you carefully brushed the outer layer smooth  and sealed it with a final layer of hairspray. I remember a classmate who had a conical “beehive” hairdo done before a prom. By carefully wrapping it in a scarf at night, she preserved it for several days. It gradually deflated, though, so by Friday, her light brown beehive looked like she had a cow patty on her head….

High Hair, 1917

High hair for evening, accented with a jeweled comb, from an article in Delineator, April 1917. The waves are probably a Marcel.

Back in 1917, you could also use Silmarine to set your hair — it probably increased volume, too.

Ad for Silmarine hair setting lotion, Delineator, March 1917.

The Sew Historically website has an extensive set of recipes for shampoos and for Bandoline, the 19th century predecessor to hair spray.  In 1917, you could wear an invisible hairnet:

Another big hair style from a Fashionette hairnet ad. Delineator, August 1917.

The blonde woman with a similar gravity-defying hairstyle is wearing a house dress, not an evening gown. Delineator, January 1917.

Two high hairdos flank a less extreme style in April 1917. Delineator magazine.

A high, conical hairdo from an article in Delineator, April 1917. “The high hair-dressing is new, and adds a generous cubit to your stature.” This was not just a style for evening, as seen from other illustrations.

Did any ordinary women get their hair to look like this? Yes.

This pretty girl with a lap full of kittens posed in the homely back yard of my grandmother’s house. Circa 1917.

Not all hairdos were tall enough to “add a cubit to your height.”

This woman’s long, Marcel-waved hair [her “crowning glory”] is worn close to her head, and caught in a large chignon at the nape of her neck. This style persisted into the 1920’s and early 1930’s. Delineator, April 1917.

The next photo contains a mysterious reference to eating “bread crusts to make your hair curl.”

Her low hair style has a cluster of curls in back. April, 1917. Delineator.

Are they real, or did she buy them?

A “switch” in the form of a “string of curls” was offered in this ad from Delineator, February 1917. Ad for Frances Roberts Co. –“The Mail-Order Hair House.”

Gradually Working Your Way Toward Bobbed Hair

Two women from a Sears’ catalog, Fall 1917. Although at first glance their hair appears as short as Irene Castle’s, a closer look shows a small bun at the back.

In the 1920’s the bun was eliminated:

https://witness2fashion.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/1924-oct-p-25-patterns-top.jpg?w=500&h=404

Short, “shingle” haircuts from October, 1925; Delineator. The front of the hairdo is much like that of 1917.

Short Hair on Women Marked a Social Change

Long hair used to be the only option for most women. Delineator, March 1917.

A woman’s long hair was said to be “her crowning glory.”  In Victorian times, cropped hair was often a sign that a woman had suffered a severe illness (as in Conan Doyle’s story, “The Copper Beeches.“)

Dresses for girls 8 to 15, Delineator, May 1924. The one on the left has long “Mary Pickford” curls, associated with innocence.

Men saw long hair paradoxically, as both sexy and innocent: young girls wore their hair loose and long, and young ladies “put up their hair” around sixteen, as a sign that they were now adults — and ready for marriage.

Cutting it all short at one time — like Irene Castle — took a lot of courage, especially in 1917. My mother and her best friend shocked their families when they bobbed their hair around 1922. They were the first girls in town to do it.  Back in 1918, my mother was working up to it gradually — and that is a story for another day. (Part 2)

My mother’s eighth grade graduation picture, circa 1918-19.

She has done her best to simulate the high hair and cheek puffs of fashion illustrations — without cutting her hair.

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, 1960s-1970s, Hairstyles, Musings, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, vintage photographs, World War I

Something in the Air: Fabrics, 1917

Paisley, embroidery and large scale dots, March 1917. Delineator.

Print fabric, embroidery, and large scale dots, March 1917. Delineator.

At my grandmother’s house was an inexpensive child’s version of The Arabian Nights, with black and white illustrations that fascinated me.

Illustration from title page of Arabian Nights, Winston edition, 1924.

Illustration from title page of Arabian Nights, John C. Winston Co. edition, 1924. Illustrator not named.

The Enchanted Horse, illustration from Arabian Nights, John Winston Co., 1924

The Enchanted Horse, illustration from Arabian Nights, John C. Winston Co., 1924. The artist’s initial in the corner is FR.

Illustration for The Arabian Nights, probably by Rene Bull.

Illustration for The Arabian Nights, probably by Rene Bull. A feast of pattern and textures in black and white.

I recently located an edition similar to the one I loved and lost. When I began to research the illustrator, things got complicated. My 1924 book, published in America by the John C. Winston Co., says “with colored plates by Adeline H. Bolton.” But the black and white illustrations, much more exciting (to me) are not credited, and they appear to be by more than one artist, “FR” and Rene Bull among them. And some, at least, date back to 1912.

It even appears that “Adeline H. Bolton” . . .

Color illustration signed A. Bolton. Winston edition.

Color illustration signed A. H. Bolton. Winston edition. 1924

. . . may have been hired to paint like Rene Bull. I can’t identify “FR”, but at least some of the black and white illustrations are signed by Rene Bull — who had done illustrations for a 1912 British edition of The Arabian Nights, also published that year in the U.S. by Dodd, Mead, & Company. Bull illustrated The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayam in 1913, and Russian Ballet, by A.E. Johnson, also in 1913.

Illustration from Russian Ballet, 1913 ed., by Rene Bull.

Illustration from Russian Ballet, 1913 edition, signed Rene Bull in lower right corner.

I’m not the first to notice that the costumes of the Ballets Russesan explosion of color, embroidery, jewels, and complex pattern — influenced fashion in the first part of the twentieth century! Oddly, the contemporary book Russian Ballet (1913) is not illustrated with costume sketches by Bakst, who designed many of them, but by that well-known illustrator of Middle Eastern tales, Rene Bull.

Looking through Delineator fashion illustrations from 1917, I keep seeing echoes of my old Arabian Nights, which may have been pirated in part from the 1912 Rene Bull edition. The stripes, the embroidery, the gauzy fabrics and large-scale prints, even the poses, show how deeply this kind of art permeated the era. “Zeitgeist” might be too strong a word, but “something in the air” might apply to fashion illustration, Rene Bull, “FR”, and textile designs inspired by them.

Illustration by FH for Arabian Nights. The Princess feigns madness.

Illustration by FR for Arabian Nights:  The Princess feigns madness. A riot of checks, stripes, dots, arabesques of sheer fabric, and embroidery.

Sheer top with embroidery Feb. 1917. Delineator.

Sheer dress with embroidery Feb. 1917. Delineator.

April 1917 lingerie dresses, Butterick's Delineator.

April 1917 lingerie dresses, Butterick’s Delineator. Embroidered circles on sheer fabric, left; widely spaced circular patterns on right.

Airy poses, and a long gown with large-scale pattern, by Doucet. 1917. Delineator.

Airy-fairy-peri poses, and a long gown with large-scale pattern of medallions of “blue and green Chinois flowers,” by Doucet. 1917. The bodice has “diamonds and sapphires embroidered over silver lace.” Delineator.

(A peri is a magical being from The Arabian Nights. There’s an illustration of one later in the post.)

Large scale pattern and drifting draperies, 1917. The Ballets Russes repertory included Greek costumes for "Narcissus" and "Afternoon of a Faun."

Large scale circular pattern and sheer, drifting draperies, 1917.

The Ballets Russes repertory included Greek costumes  (like the third, above) for “Narcissus” and “Afternoon of a Faun.” This advertisement, from much later, shows that complex black and white patterns still appealed to readers in the 1920’s.

This illustration in an ad for Needle Art appeared in 1924. Delineator.

This illustration is an ad for Needle Art which appeared in 1924. Delineator. I love the play of black and white patterns, still appealing to readers long after 1917.

Large scale patterns, stripes, emboidery, exoticism. Illustration from Russian Ballet dates to 1913.

Large scale patterns, stripes, embroidery, flowing draperies, exoticism. Illustration by Rene Bull from Russian Ballet,  1913. Note the circular decoration on their sleeves.

Large Scale Fabric Ornamentation, 1917

Embroidery and large scale patterns, 1917. Delineator.

Large scale embroidery and fabric patterns, 1917. Delineator.

Large scale prints, May, 1917. Delineator.

Large scale prints, May, 1917. Delineator. The design on the left is oriental lanterns. The prints on the right are large and widely spaced.

Large scale, widely spaced prints for summer, 1917. Delineator.

Large scale, widely spaced prints for summer, 1917. Delineator.

Large scale prints, widely spaced. Delineator, 1917.

Large scale prints, widely spaced. Delineator, 1917. Embroidery on blouse, left.

Fabrics with big dots, widely spaced. 1917.

Fabrics with big dots, widely spaced. 1917. The skirt on the right makes me think of “harem pants.”

Illustration for Arabian Nights and some fabrics with similar properties.

Bolton illustration for Arabian Nights, with some 1917 fabrics with similar properties. Was Bolton influenced by familiar dress fabrics? Or just imitating the successful illustration style of 1912 – 1913?

Checkerboard print and big dots with a hexagon design. 1917, Delineator

Checkerboard print and big dots with a hexagon design. 1917, Delineator

Checkerboards and Big Stripes, 1917

Delineator, June 1917.

Delineator, June 1917.

Stripes and squares in wild profusion; illustration by FR for Arabian nights.

Stripes, squares and dots in wild profusion; illustration by FR for Arabian nights.

Checkerboard patterned fabrics, 1917. Delineator

Checkerboard patterned fabrics, 1917. Delineator

January stripes, June checkerboard stripes, July checkerboard print.1917

January stripes, June checkerboard stripes, July checkerboard print. 1917. Delineator.

Ad for Keds shoes and a Victrola. 1917.

Ad for Keds shoes and an ad for a Victrola. 1917.

Did I mention the mania for embroidery?

A Peri (Persian Fairy) and a Prince, by Rene Bull. Arabian Nights.

A Peri (Persian Fairy) and a Prince, by Rene Bull. Arabian Nights.

Embroidered garments, 1917.

Embroidered garments, 1917.

Left: Embroidered gown by Paul Poiret, June 1917. Right: Butterick pattern, May 1917.

Left: Embroidered gown by Paul Poiret, June 1917. Right: Butterick pattern, May 1917.

Embroidery on sheer fabrick appliqued to back of 1917 dress.

Beading and Embroidery on sheer fabric appliqued to back of 1917 dress.

Front of dress bodice with embroidered applique. 1917. Private collection.

Front of dress bodice with embroidered applique. 1917. Private collection.

And that brings an end to this orgy of ornament! (Really, I just wanted an excuse for sharing all these images, whether you see any connection to Arabian Nights illustrations or not! ) — Cheerio!

Checkerboard trimmed suit from Butterick patterns. May 1917.

Checkerboard trimmed suit from Butterick patterns. May 1917.

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, Dresses, Musings, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Vintage Couture Designs, Vintage Garments: The Real Thing

Easter Bonnets for April 1917

Just for fun, here's a review of women's hats for April, 1917. All images are from Delineator magazine, April 1917 issue.

A sheer hat for April, 1917. Delineator magazine, editorial illustration.

Just for fun, here’s a sampling of women’s hats from the Spring of 1917. All images are from Delineator magazine’s April, 1917, issue.

big hats april 1917 Delineator

Go bold! (And watch out for low doorways.)

Lace hat, April 1917. Delineator.

Lace hat, April 1917. Delineator.

Lace is always fun and feminine. Wearing a bag on your head? Only for the bold.

1917 april p 69 flowers on hat 9061 9071 9100 9076 9083 9069 top

It’s hard to go wrong with flowers . . .

1917 april p 62 hats no hatpins low on head

. . . or fruit.

hat 1917 april p 72 fruit festive

Appliqued embroidery is elegant, and you can’t have too many roses. Or you could take your inspiration from a marching band:

1917 april p 68 april skies embroidery roses shako

And don’t be afraid of height:

1917 april p 68 vertical hat  9096 9101 9079 9089 9079 9074

1917 april p 66 hat vertical or horizontal fash of today top

Or of width. The people behind you probably don’t want to see anything, anyway.

Hats featured in Delineator article, April 1917.

Hats featured in this Delineator article, April, 1917, fit close to the head instead of being anchored to a mass of hair with long hatpins:  “The hatpin is merely a trimming.”

"You will notice how low the hats are worn on the head."

“You will notice how low the hats are worn on the head.”

"A high hat, but notice how the straw lace is used to lighten it."

“A high hat, but notice how skillfully the straw lace is used to lighten it.”

"The hat with the halo will suit any of our latter-day saints, expecilayy the worldly ones." -- Delineator, April 1917

“The hat with the halo will suit any of our latter-day saints, especially the worldly ones.” — Delineator editorial comment, April 1917

You can borrow your hat ideas from the men . . .

1917 april p 72 top hats

Or be as prettily pink — or green — as you like:

1917 april p 71 color barrel skirt hats 9051 9058 9064 9044 9059 9061

Just don’t get too matchy-matchy, no matter how much you love that blue and white print:

Matching skirt, bag, and hat, Butterick's Delineator magazine, April 1917.

Matching skirt, bag, and hat, Butterick’s Delineator magazine, April 1917.

Happy Holidays!

For those who’d like to see more of the outfits worn with some of these hats:

1917 april p 68 april skies 9096 9101 9079 9089 9079 9074

1917 april p 69 lingerie frocks 9061 9071 9100 9076 9083 9069 top

1917 april p 66 fash of today top

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, bags, Hats, Hats, Purses, Vintage Accessories

A Lament for Bound Periodicals

Cover of Delineator magazine, April 1917. Color illustration by Maud Humphrey.

Cover of Delineator magazine, April 1917. Color illustration by Maud Humphrey.

I am still amazed to the discover full color fashion illustrations in magazines that are 98 years old, or even older.

Look at the unexpected notes of muted red in the embroidery on this blue dress:

Detail, Delineator cover, April 1917.

Detail, Delineator cover, April 1917.

Hem embroidery, April 1917.

Hem embroidery, April 1917.

The Past Was Not Dressed in Black and White

Most of the movies and photographs that we have for the early 20th century are in black and white. It’s hard not to think of the nineteen twenties and early thirties in shades of gray, because, in the photos we have, we can’t see that a “black” dress is actually red, or burgundy, or blue, or green; or that a pale dress is not white but peach, yellow, or aqua, etc.

This is how a page from a 1925 copy of Delineator magazine would look on black and white film or microfiche:

Delineator, April 1925, photographed in gray scale.

A page from Delineator, April 1925, photographed in gray scale.

But this is what those old Delineators really looked like;  there were several pages of full-color fashion illustrations in every issue:

A color page from Delineator, April 1925.

The same page as it actually appeared in Delineator, April 1925.

When you see it in black and white, the suit on the lower right seems to actually be black and white — but the blouse is vivid yellow. The hem of the red dress “reads” as black when you can’t see the color. The beading on the black dress is reddish, too.

Bound Periodicals Replaced with Black and White Film

There is a wealth of costume history and color information in old periodicals, but sadly, many libraries got rid of their bound periodical sections and replaced them with microfilm and microfiche about ten years before the digital revolution. Today, it’s possible to make full-color scans of old magazines (if you still have any), but the big, old, heavy, bound volumes of magazines are long gone; often black and white photos of their pages are all that libraries have.

When you can get your hands on a vintage fashion magazine, many of the illustrations look like this:

Delineator, June 1926, p. 29, photographed from a bound periodical in the library.

Delineator, June 1926, p. 29, photographed from a bound periodical in the library.

But this is what they look like when you read them on microfilm:

The way it would look on microfilm.

The same illustration converted to black and white. Would you guess that one dress has green roses on it? That the dress in the lower left is not black?

Why I Became Witness2Fashion

Originally, I thought I would write mostly about the 1950s and 1960s — because I was a “witness” to the fashions of those years. I was just becoming aware of clothing and its social impact then; I can remember exactly when I wore certain outfits, because I was young and had many milestones — first dance, first capri pants, first grown-up suit, first jobs, important interviews, etc. I can also remember which styles from the period looked stodgy and middle-aged to me at twenty, and what occasions called for hats and gloves.

McCall's pattern 7981, 1965.

McCall’s pattern 7981, 1965. Classy, but by 1965 a little “mature” for a college senior like me. The models are young, but chic women in their fifties also wore suits like this.

I handle a lot of clothing patterns, not always dated, and I expected to verify the memories they evoked by going to the library and looking through magazines from my youth: Seventeen, Glamour, Mademoiselle, Vogue, etc. I have access to both a major urban library system and a large university library. But . . . .

Information Was Lost in Translation to Black and White

. . . most of those magazines are now only available as microfilm or microfiche! They’re preserved in black and white — color fashion magazines, stripped of their colors. Knowing that half the information that used to be there is missing really takes the pleasure out of a library visit. (Neither library subscribes to Vogue online.) And black and white versions of color fashion photos do lose much of their information. If you need proof that red and green look the same when reduced to black and white :

Cover of Maureen Valdes Marsh's book 70s Fashion Fiascos. Converted to black and white, the lettering is all the same gray.

Cover of Maureen Valdes Marsh’s book 70s Fashion Fiascos. Converted to black and white, the lettering is all the same gray, and the caftan loses most of its impact.

Also, for the benefit of anyone under forty, I’ll explain that it is very uncomfortable for those of us who wear glasses with bi-focal or graded lenses to read a vertical microfilm screen. With all graded lenses, you’re expected to look down to read and straight ahead to focus on things that are far away. This works for driving — but not for reading a vertical screen one foot away! I physically can’t spend hours reading that way.

So I switched my focus — in both senses — to the remaining vintage fashion periodicals that I could find.

Butterick’s Delineator Magazine, 1900 to 1937

Delineator cover, February 1933.

Delineator cover, February 1933. The illustrator is probably Dynevor Rhys. Vintage color combinations are sometimes unexpected, like this hat. Makeup styles are also documented in color.

At the main library I discovered a huge treasure trove of really old Delineator magazines still in the form of full-size bound periodicals that had not been converted to microfilm. My library has a complete set of Butterick’s Delineator magazines from 1900 to 1937. They were not converted to microfilm, possibly because The Delineator stopped publication in 1937. The library stores them in a basement off-site, but will bring volumes to the reserve desk with one day’s notice.

I also discovered that, from the early 1920’s to 1937, Butterick put a list of each month’s new pattern numbers at the back of Delineator magazine,  which meant that those “undated” Butterick patterns could be dated — something not possible before. I made it my project to collect the numbers and publish my research online. (See Dating Butterick Patterns 1920s to 1937 by clicking here.)  The results can be found at witness2fashion.com.

Of course, I couldn’t help reading some of the magazines! At first I intended to photograph a few of the the color pages;  then I became fascinated by the ads, and the black and white pattern illustrations; I started taking photos of some of the longer articles to read later . . . .

My project kept growing. Trained to do academic research,  I wanted to compare the Butterick patterns illustrated in Delineator with contemporary patterns pictured in other available bound periodicals, like Ladies’ Home Journal and Woman’s Home Companion. My computer is getting very full of images!  I’ll share as many as I can.

“Got Anything Valuable?”  in Vintage Advertisements

I was taught to regard advertisements as a valuable source of primary research, because they often show occupational dress and stereotypical clothing far removed from high fashion. Here are a few informative ads in color:

"Customs Inspector: 'Got anything very valuable in this trunk?' The Traveler: 'I should say so . . . . A whole carton of Chesterfields." Cigarette ad, July 1928. The Delineator.

“Customs Inspector: ‘Got anything very valuable in this trunk?’ The Traveler: ‘I should say so . . . . A whole carton of Chesterfields.’ ” Cigarette ad, July 1928. The Delineator.

Her big, orange scarf with green accents transforms a quiet camel suit and matching shoes. I expect The Vintage Traveler to covet that travel blanket. Could it be a Pendleton?

Camel Cigarette Ad, July 1928.

Camel Cigarette Ad, July 1928. This ad offers a fantasy of country club life. Ads are aspirational, always implying that using the product will improve your life and possibly raise your social status.

A costumer will note the different shades of blue (not gray or black) on the gentlemen’s jackets, worn with light tan or gray slacks, and a pink pocket square.

Ford was later than other manufacturers to introduce closed cars. This is one of a series of Ford advertisements aimed at women:

April 1924 Ford Ad for Closed Car.  Delineator. A "Woman in Business."

April 1924. Ford Ad for a Closed Car. A “Woman in Business,” but not a secretary; this is her office. From Delineator.

“Her habit of measuring time in terms of dollars gives the woman in business keen insight into the true value of a Ford closed car for her personal use. . . . inexpensive operation and upkeep convince her that it is a sound investment value. And it is such a pleasant car to drive. . . .”

Ad for Elgin watches, December 1928.

Full color ad for Elgin watches, December 1928. Costumers need to know about period accessories.

If you’ve just started reading witness2fashion, it may seem like I hop around from era to era.

I do, on purpose, following whatever trail catches my eye — zippers, corsets, makeup, accessories . . . . I like them all!

I Love the Colors of the Past

There are fashions in color, as well as in styles. Some color combinations or seasonal colors may surprise us.

To end where I started, here are several color illustrations from Delineator, 1917 —  almost a century old.  Images like these are a reason I treasure (and want to share bits of) those bound periodicals that escaped conversion to microfilm.

February 1917, Delineator, page 51.

February 1917, Delineator, page 51. The dress on the right looks like blue-violet changeable taffeta.

Up close, you can see the pastel print on the black dress, and the pink tassels on the blue one. Orange chiffon dresses with black and white trim are not a common sight nowadays:

Details, February 1917, Delineator, page 51.

Details, February 1917, Delineator, page 51.

The ladies below wear cocoa, tan, brilliant blue-green or reddish brown, no longer “Spring” colors to us,  with some rather remarkable hats:

Feb. 1917, Delineator, p. 52.

Feb. 1917, Delineator, p. 52.

Up close, you can see the colors in the prints lining the white stole and used in the rust-red dress and hat:

Detail of color illustration, Feb. 1917.

Detail of color illustration, Feb. 1917. Is that a Valkyrie on the right?

These are fashions for January, 1917. It’s nice to know that the blue hat and bag are blue,  not black.

January 1917, Delineator, page 40.

January 1917, Delineator, page 40. The vivid red and blue contrast would be lost in a black and white photo.

Detail, Jan. 1917, Ddelineator. The red and blue dress has embroidered pockets.

Detail, Jan. 1917, Delineator. The red and blue outfit has embroidered pockets; so does the pumpkin-brown dress.

“Here’s Looking at You, Kid”

Delineator, Feb. 1917.

Hats from Delineator, Feb. 1917.

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, 1920s, 1920s-1930s, 1930s, 1950s-1960s, 1960s-1970s, bags, Dating Butterick Patterns, handbags, Hats, Musings, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Purses, Vintage Accessories

Early Keds for Women Ads, Summer 1917

Keds for women ad, June 1917.

Keds for women ad, June 1917.

Keds rubber-soled shoes were introduced in 1916 (according to Wikipedia), a product of the United States Rubber Company. I have not searched through magazines from 1916, but this ad from June 1917 implies that this particular Ked shoe is a new style, “A New Shoe with a New Charm.” An ad from the following month makes a pun about this model: “Keds Make Their First Bow to You.” Obviously, these are not the high-topped sneakers that were the first Keds produced. These rubber-soled flats, with their squared bow on the toe, look amazingly modern compared to other women’s shoes from 1917:

Women's Shoes for April, 1917. From an article in Delineator magazine.

Women’s Shoes for April, 1917. From an article in Delineator magazine.

Here is the text from the June Keds advertisement pictured above:1917 june p 33 keds ad btm text“A new shoe — a new name — a new attractiveness in style — a new comfort in  coolness and graceful flexibility — a new economy worth while. These are reasons why you, too, will appreciate the charm of this big new American shoe family called Keds.

“Keds have cool tops of the firmest and finest of canvas. The soles are made of rubber, full of grace and spring.

“Keds prove a necessity to the well-dressed woman who values perfect ease in all of her outdoor games and sports. They are so comfortable outdoors that she also wears them for housework, shopping, and leisure dress-up hours. Keds, in name, means quality, for behind every pair there is the reputation of the largest rubber manufacturer in the world. You will find all that is desirable in materials, workmanship and shapeliness and smart style in any of the three grades of Keds. Ask for Keds according to price and style desired under these names:

“National Keds, from $1.50 up; Campfire Keds, $1.25 to $2.00; Champion Keds, $1.00 to $1.50.

“There is style, service and economy in Keds for every member of the family.

“Keds for girls and boys are national favorites. The lines and support of Keds conform to little growing feet. There is also great economy in their splendid wearing qualities.”

Keds Advertisement, July 1917

Keds Advertisement for July 1917; it appeared in both Delineator and Ladies' Home Journal.

Keds Advertisement for July 1917; it appeared in both Delineator and Ladies’ Home Journal.

This full page ad — “Keds Make Their First Bow to You” —  appeared in the July edition of the women’s magazines Delineator and Ladies’ Home Journal.  “They bow to you — discriminatingly well-dressed American woman!”

“Keds for you will cover all daytime occasions — home wear; golf, tennis and all other outdoor games; for ordinary walking or longer ‘hikes’; for yachting and riding wear; and plenty of other styles just as perfectly suitable for wear with morning frocks and daintiest house gowns, at home or on the country-club porch.

“She travels many miles a day — the woman going about her household duties; but she is perfectly content to walk on that journey of loving service when she wears a shoe as pretty as it is comfortable….”

[U.S. Rubber later introduced a line of woman’s shoes called Kedettes, closely resembling fashion shoes; some even had medium-high heels.]

I’m not sure whether the July 1917 shoe is the same as the June one, or if the July shoe actually had thin black piping as drawn. The illustrations also have different skirts and different backgrounds — a boat race in June, a beach scene in July.

Take another look at that classic, slip-on shoe; it’s 97 years old this month.

Keds for women ad, June 1917.

Keds for women, June 1917 – almost 100 years ago.

 

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Shoes, Sportswear, Vintage Accessories

Van Raalte Hat Veils “Make a Plain Face Pretty,” 1917

Van Raalte Veil Advertisement, Delineator, June 1917

Van Raalte Veil Advertisement, Delineator, June 1917

The Van Raalte Company is probably better known today for its gloves, stockings, and underwear, but hat veiling was one of its first products. In 1915, Zealie Van Raalte applied for a patent on his special hat veil which had an opening for the crown of the hat, and “which can be readily and quickly secured to the hat with the least possible delay and trouble in securing the correct adjustment, and which is detachable or removable at all times.” Dollhouse Bettie has written a fine series of illustrated articles on the history of the company. Click Here.

“A Veil Makes a Plain Face Pretty…”

Images and Text from an Ad for Van Raalte Veils, May, 1917

Images and Text from an Ad for Van Raalte Veils, May, 1917

“A veil makes a plain face pretty — every face more attractive. The subtle witchery of the veil has enhanced miladi’s charms since the earliest years — and there were never such becoming veils as the Spring collection of Van Raalte Veils.” According to Dollhouse Bettie, the first Van Raalte plant opened in 1917, so this is a very early advertisement, one of a series that ran in Butterick’s Delineator magazine that year. “The Cherry Blossom” and “The Shirley” veils are shown drawn tightly over the face. (“The Vision” seems to stop above the chin and gives me the impression of a tribal tattoo!) Perhaps not coincidentally, hats with veils appeared on some of the pattern ilustrations in the same issue:

A Veiled hat shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

A veiled hat shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

A veiled hat shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

A hat and veil shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

A Veiled hat shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

A eiled hat shown with Butterick fashions, May 1917.

Two of these illustrations seem to show the same hat, which has a veil similar, but not identical to, Van Raalte’s “Shirley.”two simillar hats and veils

I often see the same hat used repeatedly over several months in Delineator pattern illustrations. Apparently the illustrators worked from live models who were accessorized from a stock of hats, purses, boas, etc.

The “Winsome” Veil

Van Raalte Veils Ad, June, 1917

Van Raalte Veils Ad, June, 1917

“A white veil makes the fairest face seem fairer — and gives a fashionable touch to the Spring or Summer costume.  [Suntans were not yet in fashion in 1917.] Since this veil slips over the hat and exposes the crown, it may be one of Van Raalte’s patented veils, or it may be tied behind the hat. Note the model’s lips — lip rouge was becoming acceptable on ‘nice’ women.

A veiled hat illustrated in Delineator, March 1917.

A veiled hat illustrated in Delineator, March 1917.

I love the way the handbag echoes the colors of the jewels on the hat. [The hat does not have a brown feather — that is part of the fur worn by an adjacent model.]

Long Veils

Ad for Van Raalte Veiling, Delineator, April 1917

Ad for Van Raalte Veiling, Delineator, April 1917

A veil this long was versatile and could be tied in place behind the hat, and (if the hat was not too big) even used to secure the hat on windy days. Riding in carriages or the open cars of 1917 often required something stronger than a hatpin to keep your hat from blowing off. [Henry Ford refused to make a ‘closed car’ until 1927, when the Model A was introduced to compete with the more comfortable cars being produced by his competitors.]

Van Raalte Veils could be identified by their small paper label:

Van Raalte Label

Van Raalte Label

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, Hats, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Vintage Accessories

Children in Grammar School Photos, 1916

Miss Worthington's Class, "Low Seventh and High Sixth, August 1916."

Miss Worthington’s Class, “Low Seventh and High Sixth, August 1916.” Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Miss M. L. Roche's Class, "High Eighth Grade, 1916."

Miss M. L. Roche’s Class, “High Eighth Grade, 1916.” Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

One difficulty of doing research from old photographs is that we can’t always trust the information written on them. Remembered Summers found these vintage class photos pasted into an old album that was in poor condition. Even though both pictures have dates written on their fronts — either 1914 or 1917– the inscriptions on the backs of both photo postcards, in the same hand and the same ink,  date them to 1916.

EDITED 2/9/16: Remembered Summers wrote two posts featuring other grammar school classes. Click here for eight graders circa 1914 or click here for first graders earlier in the century.

Depending on the angle of the light, this date is either 1914 or 1917.

Depending on the angle of the light, this date is either 1914 or 1917.

August 1916, Miss Worthington's Class

Photo back: “Low Seventh & High Sixth, August 1916, Miss Worthington’s Class”

Some of these children look quite mature (their teachers are also pictured.) For many, an eighth grade education was considered adequate, and they were ready to join the workforce. The lucky ones went on to high school (only 16.8% of 17-year-olds graduated from high school in 1919), and about a third of those went to college. Then as now, children dressed up for their school photos; here are some better views of their clothing.

Miss Worthington's Seventh Grade, 1916; left side

Miss Worthington’s Seventh Grade, 1916; left side. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

 

Miss Worthington's Seventh Grade Class, 1916. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Miss Worthington’s Seventh Grade Class, 1916; right side. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Miss Roche's eighth grade class, 1916; left side. Click to enlarge. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Miss Roche’s eighth grade class, 1916; left side. Click to enlarge. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Miss Roche's High Eighth Grade Class, 1916; right side. Click to enlarge/

Miss Roche’s High Eighth Grade Class, 1916; right side. Photo courtesy of Remembered Summers.

Many of the girls are wearing stripes and/or the sailor-style overblouse called a “middy.” Striped dresses, middy blouses, and striped middy blouses were popular during World War I, 1914 to 1918.

Striped dresses, Delineator, 1917 & 1918.

Striped dresses, Delineator, 1917 & 1918.

Middy and striped skirt, Delineator 1918; Striped Middy Blouses, Perry, Dame & Co. Catalog, 1917.

Middy and striped skirt, Delineator 1918; Striped Middy Blouses, Perry, Dame & Co. Catalog, 1917.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, Children's Vintage styles, Sportswear, vintage photographs