The Second World War caused a revolution in the way women dressed. We were now workers and patriots. Our clothes were strong, practical, comfortable, and yet decisively feminine, clinging ever so slightly to the glamour of the 1930s. That’s why it makes such a fabulous era to draw on for daywear inspiration.
You’ll find high waists and defined shoulders, belted silhouettes and pocketed work-wear. Trousers were on the scene for the first time and, unlike some of the high street’s subsequent designs, they were made specifically with women’s figures in mind. Specifically, they were small waisted, bottom lifting and baggy legged. Everything modern trousers lack, perhaps?
At Revival, as you’ll know, we draw a lot of our inspiration from the 40s and this summer has been no exception.
If you’re a fan of red, let me take you over to the Casablanca Skirt and Shorts. I particularly like the slight A-line of the skirt and the box pleats to either side both help to maintain the shape of the skirt and give you extra maneuverability. The shorts are high waisted with a baggy leg which will flatter your thighs and are bum-perfect for a romp to the beach.
If you are a true-and-true dress-wearing gal, then our navy shirtdress is the perfect in easy smart-casual day wear. Often, shirtdresses can be tricky, as any of you with any hint of curves will know (gaping buttons anyone?). However, this dress will accommodate curves (though it’s always best to try first) and will flatter your feminine figure. Order the larger of the two sizes you wear, as there is no stretch in the cotton.
As summer leaves us (I’m still stubbornly wearing sandals in hope), you might find you need a cardigan to keep off those impending autumn chills (nooooo!). But don’t worry; we’ve got you covered (pun intended). I am a proud owner of the Casablanca cardigan in navy and I can’t recommend it enough. Seriously, it goes with pretty much all of my dresses and looks fab with a highwaisted trouser. It can be so depressing going into autumn and suddenly abandoning our silhouettes with baggy layers. This cardigan won’t let that happen!
In terms of accessorizing, the forties weren’t about ostentation like the twenties were. Keep it simple with a small string of pearls and some pretty earrings. Try a bag like our Vintage shoulder bag, available in three very forties colours. I just love the tan with the navy shirtdress.
If you’re going to Goodwood this year, forties separates could be a good option for you- all day comfort, yet appropriate on-era dressing and smart to boot. You’ll be holding that Best Dressed trophy in no time!