Riotous, decadent and excessive, the 1920’s were an era of lavish vulgarity complete with sensory saturation. F. Scott Fitzerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby, captures this feeling of dizzying, glittering, hedonism with it’s vibrant descriptions of a decade immortalized with women obsessed with jazz, short skirts, bobbed hair and glistening legs – yes, these young beauties were seen showing their legs!
Soon after the First World War, a radical change came about as dresses with long trains gave way to above-the-knee pinafores, while corsets were abandoned and women borrowed their looks from the male wardrobe. At first, many couturiers were reluctant to adopt the new androgynous style, but embraced it wholeheartedly by around 1925.
The 1920's woman showed disdain for conventional dress and behavior, used rouge and lipstick, plucked her eyebrows and adopted a bustless, waistless, sleeveless silhouette. She offset her male-oriented dressed-down style with feathers, Shawls and Boa Stoles, embroidery, and showy accessories. This modern lady dressed in fringed skirts and bright colored sweaters. She wore scarves and blouses with Peter Pan collars.
For afternoon or Informal Evening Wear during the summer of 1922, the Parisian fashion houses showed Summer Dresses of organdy, lace, or lace mixed with chiffon and similar fluid materials. All skirts were four to six inches from the ground, and famously sleeveless. The “Flapper” style as it came to be called (known to the French as the 'garçonne' look), was popular with women at the time who were fun-loving, smoked and loved to drink!
The Delineator, in 1921, declared that women at the time loved to drink so much that “seven eligible bachelors say the Flapper would be a failure as a wife, and they refuse to marry her.” Historically, before Prohibition, the only time a lady even considered carrying any intoxicating beverage in her hand was when she put a few drops into a medicine bottle to take while traveling. In the hey-day of the Flapper, all high-spirited girls carried their own flask.
The magnetic personality of Couturièr Coco Chanel, a major figure in fashion at the time for her chic and progressive designs, promoted this sporty and athletic look. Chanel also popularized the bob hairstyle, the little black dress, and the use of jersey knit for women's clothing, elevating the status of both accessories, costume jewelry and knitwear as the topping of a look that epitomized Modern Glamour.
View White Stole’s entire collection for size and color ranges of Stoles, Stole Wraps, Vintage Stoles, Stole Capes and Shawls for purchase, or rental, on our website.