Everyday Fashions of the Forties As Pictured in Sears Catalogs (Dover Fashion and Costumes)
Few publications illustrate so comprehensively what American men, women, and children wore within the 1940s than the Sears catalogs of those years, when the company’s fashions typified the tastes of the American mainstream. This book is a compilation of 122 fully illustrated and captioned pages selected and reproduced from rare copies of Sears catalogs of the World War II era.
Over 120 large-format pages have been carefully reprinted on high-quality glossy stock. They reveal in sharp detail the broad range of clothing fashions to be had all the way through a period when wartime gasoline rationing made mail-order shopping reach new heights of popularity.
Hundreds of correctly detailed drawings depict articles of clothing and personal accessories, including hats, overcoats, shoes, dresses, sportswear, undergarments, neckties, and more. Styles for children range from play clothes to “Sunday best.” Men’s clothing reflects the conservativism in male fashions all the way through the period. Women’s wear ranges from slacks, newly popular with women within the staff, to dresses with quite a few “Oomph.”
Here is a richly revealing document that historians of costume and readers considering fashion, social history, and Americana will find eternally fascinating. JoAnne Olian, curator of the Costume Collection on the Museum of the City of New York, has written an introduction that appraises the fashions of the 1940s and the many ways during which they reflected the times.
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