- Holidays and Celebrations
1940 Women Costumes For Halloween
1940 Women Costumes ~ How To Dress Up In 40's Fashion
1940 Women Costumes are a great idea for some dress up fun on Halloween night. You will feel quite elegant wearing one of the lovely fashions from the 1940s, whether it's a fabulous suit, dress, or even a Rosie The Riveter outfit. This picture is of Post Magazine and Rosie The Riveter is pictured on the cover.
Women's Fashion In The 1940s
The 1940s saw two very different and unique styles in clothing for women. During the war women's dresses were shorter and showcased padded shoulders. The extra decorations were left off clothing. The reason? Restrictions were in place that determined the use of the raw materials and textiles used in "non war" products to help with the war effort. And all this time I thought it was just the style, I had no idea there were regulations on how much material and how many accessories you could use.
Yep, the regulations determined how much fabric you could use for clothes and even how those clothes were designed. Rationing caused dresses, skirts and even suits to have slimmer lines and become shorter, rising all the way up to the knee. Most clothes were "Air Force" blue and looked sharp and precise, that gave the 40's styles a military look. Separates were introduced so people could get by owning less clothing by mixing and matching the tops, pants and skirts they had. This mix and matching made it look that people had more outfits while they really owned less. Did you realize that rationing went as far as clothing? I though it had to do more with food and never gave the 1940s clothing styles a thought.
Women's Fashions From McWhirters In 1941
Here is a newspaper ad from "McWhirters, an Australian store. It shows the specials for the 1941 Easter season. You can see there are dresses for women, pants suits, pajamas, sweaters, under garments and even some corsets.
I had to have a Rosie The Riveter costume here!
1940 Vintage Dresses
Here are some of the fabulous dresses from the 1940s and they will be perfect for you at Halloween. Now that you know where to get the dress, it's time to look for the shoes. The 40's gave us so many wonderful fashion ideas that we can treasure and bring back at special costume events like a Halloween party. So enjoy these great styles and have some fun with them.
Women's Clothes From The 40's
With so many men away at war, the women had to take over those jobs traditionally considered to be a man's job. The clothing of the 1940s were practical. It was during the war years that women's pants became an acceptable part of women's wear. That 1940s look had a name, they were called "Utility Clothes". Utility clothes had their own look. The shoulders were square and usually padded, the hips were narrow and the skirts were short, about knee length. Ladies were encouraged to make their clothes and were taught how to save on materials and also trained on how to make older clothing look like new with the addition of up to date fashion trends. The wartime clothing was practical, simple and still looked pretty good...don't you just love the styles from the 40's? I know I do.
Active Wear For Women - Sporty Fashions From The 1940s
This sports wear is modeled by Ilona Massey, a Hungarian-American actress. The focus of this picture is on her red knee socks, and since the picture is in black and white, the sock color is lost on us. Imagine how wild a look this must have been back in the 40s!
Rosie The Riveter ~ A Great 1940 Women Costume Idea
One of the 40's styles was called The "Rosie Look" and it focused on pants or slacks for ladies. Up until this point in time, most women wore skirts or dresses. This Rosie look was named for "Rosie The Riveter"...a phrase made famous by a 1942 song written by Redd Evans and John Jacob Loeb. The song focused on Rosie, a women who was a riveter at a factory filling in for the man who traditionally held the job. This was a great piece of marketing propaganda for the US Armed Forces.
Part of the song went like this
"All the day long,
Whether rain or shine
She's part of the assembly line.
She's making history,
Working for victory
Rosie the Riveter".
The Rosie look was functional for the working women. The Rosie look included comfortable and loose fitting trousers or overalls and durable work boots. Women pulled their hair back and wore scarves to protect their hair from the machinery.
Listen To Rosie The Riveter - And See Some Of The 1940 Women Costumes
World War 2 Fashion Restrictions In The 1940s
Long evening dresses were still acceptable but these were plainer than in the past. Another fashion accessory that was no longer available due to restrictions on clothing were stockings. The ladies began to use makeup on their legs and some even went so far as to draw a seam down the back of their legs to make it look like they were wearing their seamed stockings!
When the war was over big changes started to happen with women and women's clothing. Women had to give up the men's jobs they had been working. Yep, Rosie the Riveter, Wanda the Welder and many other ladies gave up the work they did during the war. The men came back home and resumed their former place in the work force.
DUKW Amphibious Vehicles From The 40's - DUKW Vehicles Made By Women
Shoes Of The 1940s
Wearing a pair of these shoes not only looks great, it feels great too.
Women And The DUKW Vehicles
Women built the amphibious vehicles know as DUKW's in the 1940s and many of these vehicles are still on the road today. What do you think of that?
A small bit of trivia concerning women in the workforce during WW2 amazed me when I first heard it. I was in Boston and took a Duck Tour. The Duck Tours take you around the city and into the Charles River in an amphibious vehicle. The armed forces needed a way to get men and supplies from ships to the shore, but they didn't always have docks. The answer they came up with was amphibious vehicle called DUKW. These vehicles were a big part of the war effort and now for the very interesting fact about them. The DUKW vehicles were mainly built by women. Our tour guide told us that these vehicles were quite amazing and you can see that by how many of them are still on the roads and water today. Try a tour if you get the chance, it's quite fun! Thank you Rosie The Riveter!
Are You Surprised That Women Built Vehicles That Are Still Running Today?
Fashion Houses In The 1940s
Women Costume Ideas From The Late 1940s
The fashion designers, who had been virtually out of business during the war, came back with a vengeance. One of the most well-known fashions designers of this time was Christian Dior and he introduced a new look that came with longer skirts that were more full that the Utility Styles of the war. Dior also brought back a softer shoulder design to replace the padded shoulder look, narrow waist lines and full skirts. Many women saw the new look as too much. They thought the excessive use of materials in the newest Dior styles were a bit much when people were still living under strict restrictions from the war.
1940 Hair Styles - Perfect For A 1940 Women Costumes
Find a great hair style from the 1940s. One that will match your 1940 Halloween costume for women.
The Dior new look finally did catch on and it continued to be an influence of the fashion houses for the next decade or so. Following Dior's lead other designers introduced new styles of clothes after the end of WW2. Fashion designers like Vera Maxwell, Bonnie Chasin and Ann Klein reinvented women's clothing with ultra suede, boot wear and even sportswear.
The war years showed us how a bit of ingenuity can go a long way. Even under restrictions and rationing, during the most difficult and trying times of WW2, women's fashions still looked very attractive. Being fashionable during wartime offered women a challenge of sorts and they came through with flying colors. It just goes to show you how you can take a little and create something functional and beautiful using some of your fashion sense.
Vintage 1940's Fashion - Evening Dresses
What evening dresses looked like in the 1940s
How To Create A 40's Pin Up Hairstyle
1940's Fashion - Keeping Well Dressed
Vintage 1940's Fashion Tutorial - Good Posture
1940s Swimsuit Costume Ideas
Feeling a bit daring this Halloween? How about wearing a swimsuit from the 1940s to that costume party? Okay, October is a bit too cold for a bathing suit, but it's great to take a look at these ladies in their swim wear. No thongs, no tiny string bikinis, things sure have changed at the beach!
Add A Zootsuit For The Guys & You Have A 1940s Couples Costume
What do you think of the styles for women from the 40's? Which of these costumes for women do you like best?