A while ago I posted a collection of fashions that featured over-sized bows, which were “Very Thirties.” Today’s featured nineteen thirties’ look is Great Big Collars.
Great big collars didn’t necessarily have that “Puritan” look, but many of them did.
Digression EDIT 3/18/18: In response to a question from Christina, I looked for more information on these two images, and found that, in August, the dress design was supposedly from Lanvin, and in September, it was attributed to augustabernard:
End of Digression.
Photography was just beginning to be used in the less expensive fashion magazines. I love seeing the “fashion ideal” alongside the fashion reality. What an awkward pose that model has had to take!
The illustration on the left seems to show a double collar, which was definitely a fashion “thing.”
These collars would make any woman look like the perfect secretary or executive assistant.
Some collars could also be changed from one dress to another, which helped to make a small number of dresses look like a more extensive wardrobe. This was practical fashion for the Great Depression. [For other examples of changeable collars, see One Good Dress in the 1930s, or More Button-On Collars.]
Here are some Great Big Collars I have shown before, but these are clearer images:
This similar V-shaped collar was part of the dress:
Not all great big collars were so attention-getting. These dresses were recommended for the college girl:
Sometimes crisp and business-like, a big collar could also be soft:
This big collar appeared on an evening dress for women over forty:
Big collars were not just for grown-ups:
And, remember, big collars did not have to be white:Speaking of dresses for secretaries: I can never resist a plug for the pre-Code movie Baby Face.
Movie Recommendation: Baby Face, 1933
If you watch the movie Baby Face, from 1933, you’ll see Barbara Stanwyck in many variations of the simple dress with accessories, as she literally sleeps her way to the top. This is a Pre-Code picture, a lot more frank about sex than movies were 20 years later! (In some versions, it begins with this teenaged girl’s father clearly prostituting her to the patrons of his dive bar.) Armed with determination, cynicism, and a series of ‘secretary’ dresses, she works her way to the penthouse suite – and a much more glamorous wardrobe.