Thursday, April 20, 2017

Utility Chic

From war-time London, 1940's.....

Autumn 1944
The interplay of seams, pockets, and pleats were the hallmark of the British utility suit during WWII. Wartime shortages and rationing gave rise to this functional yet stylish, well-cut, and well-made design. The tailored silhouette featured a longer length jacket with boxy square, padded shoulders and a slightly nipped-in waist paired with a shorter, just below-the-knee skirt.

A model checks out the new utility suit.
Photo by James Jarche for The Daily Herald. Courtesy Granny Chic Gal

Miss Gene Marshall
American film star Gene Marshall shows off her utility chic by pairing a striped linen skirt with the smartly tailored, fur-trimmed jacket from D.A.E. Originals' "Business Class" ensemble. Felt tilt topper and skirt are from The Couture Touch. Scarf is from Mattel. Purse is from PD Root. Shoes and gloves are from Integrity.

Gene Marshall

Spring suits in soft boucle wool, Spring 1942.

For the home seamstress, a sewing pattern for the new longer length tailored jacket and an alternative version with short sleeves, perfect for Spring.

A trio of war-time suits featured in the September 1941 issue of Vogue Pattern Book.

London, 1940's. Understated elegance against a backdrop of ruins.
Lee Miller photo courtesy Vintage Everyday

"Fashion is Indestructible"
Digby Morton suit. Cecil Beaton photo. London, 1941.

Fashion in the Forties by Julian Robinson.
British Vogue, Autumn Forecast and Fabrics with Vogue Pattern Book supplement, September 1941.

Gene Marshall is the incomparable "Symphony in G" by Ashton Drake. Body by Integrity.

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