1940's FASHION TRENDS
1940s fashion for women can be summarized as two distinct silhouettes; Masculine (early 40's, square-shouldered look, knee-length skirts and smartly cut jackets which were inspired by World War II uniforms), and Hourglass (late 40's, bell shape skirt flaring out from a tightly cinched waist)
The most striking 1940s fashion trends were knee-length skirts, dresses, and coats. Women quite literally couldn’t wear longer hemlines due to government restrictions on the number of materials used in garments. Designers needed to come up with new ways to use less yardage in producing their creations.
Padded Shoulders : The era of the padded shoulders had arrived.
Power Suits / Victory Suits : Wide, square, padded shoulders ending in a narrow waist, often decorated with Peplum detail over an A-line pleated, tailored skirts that ended just below the knee. Also, patriotic colours were generally used for suits, dresses and plaid or tweed A-line skirts with white button-down blouses.
Pencil Skirts : They were popular because women quite literally couldn’t wear longer skirts due to government restrictions on the number of materials used in garments.
Shirt Waist & Tea Dresses :A trend of short-sleeved and knee-length rayon dresses with collar lapels and box cut skirts with slight pleats, defined waist and puffed shoulders.
Bolero Jackets : The bolero jacket was the most popular one, which was short and had rounded edges, has padded shoulders and a slim waist emphasis.
High Waisted Pants : High-waisted, pleated, wide leg, flowy pants. Women then mostly wore these long pants for work paired with heels and tucked-in blouses.
Animal Skin Handbags : In the late 1940s, most purses were made from crocodile, alligator, turtle, or snakeskin.