As Haworth 1940s weekend is this saturday ,heres brief cheats guide to looking authentic without buying vintage 40s clothing,which while without doubt the most desirable option is often not practical especially if like myself you are curvy and big footed as most 1940s ladies clothing is very petite and shoes are often small sizes and quite narrow fitting.Luckily there was a trend for 1940s clothing and shoes in the 1980s and many of these clothes look surprisingly like 40s originals .All the clothing below is vintage 1980s,though igven times is best to shop around vintage shops and on ebay or etsy its also pssible to pick up bargins at local charity shops
The ideal is to find a jacket and skirt that look close enough in colour to be a suit
I usually buy more recent vintage clothing ,from the Hitchcock blond fashion trend around 2004 as even the 1980s clothing can be a little bit too small on the bust and hips for me and is much more difficult to maintain as it often creases whereas modern fabrics are much more crease resistant .
To go under your “suit” you need a 40s look blouse ,something in muted colours is best ,either with a wide collar or a peter pan style collar as these two styles have been popular recently so are quite easy to find online or in charity shops.I prefer either plain silk blouses or polka dot cotton blouses with peter pan collars.
The main essentials are a 40s style hat and a fur which can be a mink ,squirrel or fox cape or stole .The most instantly recognisable 1940s fur is the fox with its head and legs etc still attached (The reason so many 1940s furs have their heads and legs is that furs made into coats ,stoles capes etc without their legs and head were subject to rationing and you would need to have the required number of ration tokens to buy it.whereas anything with limbs or its head was classed as a pelt and excluded from rationing .
if you dont like to wear fur then its still possible to look the part but it requires much more work as other details will need to be much more precise.Also to required if you will be outside are gloves and a handbag .To complete the look a pearl necklace and earings,perhaps a brooch.A gas mask is essential for complete accuracy as they had to be carried at all times when out ,though my friend gets around this by carrying an 1945 newspaper so she says its the end of the war
If you can find a 2940s dress such as the satin one below it can easily be teamed with a modern jacket if you need to go outside
As can be seen in the full length shots ,1940s shoes were often quite high ,I tend to wear either brogues or peep toe shoes as these are the two most well-known 40s styles .Ladies did wear flat shoes but its harder to find authentic looking replica flat shoes and 1940s ones are very hard to find in sizes above uk 4 or 5
Seamed stockings or tights add a nice authentic detail but should be flesh coloured not grey or black,It is possible to draw lines on the backs of each others legs but much harder than you might imagine to get the lines straight.
All the hats I have worn above are replica hats made specially for me however you can easily cheat and buy a 1980s wide brimmed hat and modify it ,I had hoped to go a brief tutorial on how to do this but unfortunately I have had flu and not been able to go shopping for vintage hats to use as a base.Some 1980s wide brimmed hats can be used as they are others if you remove the maribou or ostrich feathers and replace them with pheasant feathers look pretty good
The make up for the 1940s is fairly pale compared to modern tanned look foundations though not as pale as in earlier decades.The essentail is a red lipstick ,pillar box red or something similar as though not all lipstick was red it was very popular is the look most associated with the 1940s .