Building a 1940’s wardrobe

January 29, 2011

I have started a new project that I think some of you may find interesting. Being possibly insane I have decided to make myself a 1940’s wardrobe:


In my library I have a Swedish book from 1944 called “Alla kvinnors bok”, which translated to English means “Every Woman’s Book”. It’s a rather thick volume that covers a lot of things like proper behaviour, housekeeping, decorating a home, marriage and children. Those subjects are all at the end of the book, the first half covers the most important subjects of all, beauty and clothes. As a time document it is all very interesting, but it is just those first chapters that got me thinking a night when I couldn’t sleep and I leafed through the book while drinking tea. The book describes how a woman with the ability to sew can create and vary a good wardrobe, if she plans a little. There is a four-year plan how to achieve that and the idea occurred to me that it would be fun and interesting to try to do just that. I like the fashions of the 1940’s. I like to sew.

The idea would be to start now with the autumn/winter wardrobe so I have it when it’s time to wear it. Though I have a fair knowledge of the fashion of the time, I’m not an expert, so I expect this to be a learning experience for me. I will also need to adapt the clothes so that they will be wearable for me. I don’t think I will wear these clothes every day, but I want them to work for every day. There is also the question of materials. Is it possible to use the same materials? Do I want to use some of them, like real fur? And, of course, I need to make these clothes within my budget.

So why a new blog when I already have Isis’ Wardrobe? Well, I feel that this is such a special project, that it needs a space of it’s own. A place to collect what I do, resources and hopefully some interesting discussions along the way. To call it Fashionable Forties is perhaps not the most original, but that was what my brain came up with. And being in my forties as well, makes it a bit of a pun. So I hope you will find this venture interesting. And perhaps you would care to join in? I would love to see what others would make out of it.

  1. This sounds like a wonderful idea, and very stylish. I am interested in following your journey. Good luck and happy sewing, remember lots of depth breaths. Have a wonderful weekend. ax

  2. Cool project. I wear 30s and 40s fashions everyday. No need to 'tone them down'. I basic day dress isn't going to be too outlandish so as to garner stares.

    If you need some help, stop by the blog.

    Good luck!

  3. I love this idea. I'm sure your new outfits will be fab. The 40s era is my favorite fashion era. Are you going to do/sew a 1940s purse too? Please keep us posted on what you are sewing for your 1940s wardrobe!!!!!

  4. Thank you all!

    Shellyj: I alreadfy follow your blog! Adapting doesn't have to mean toning down. 🙂 I think I will mostly change materials and some are hard to get and some I wont wear, like fur.

  5. Since I just finished writing na ebook on 1940's fashion now it's time to make what I've learned. I am anxious to sew along with you. Great idea!

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