Monday, November 28, 2016

Chicago Tribune: CO-EDS SHOULD SET FASHION Nov 29, 1916

From the Chicago Tribune for November 29, 1916 (courtesy of Reddit's 100 Years ago Subreddit:
Nov 29, 1916
Prof. James of Northwestern Is Against Domination of Paris, London, and Michigan Avenue.
Woman's dress criticized yesterday by Prof. James A. James, professor of history in Northwestern university. In a lecture to a class in American history in Harris Hall.
"How long are we to be dictated to by Paris, by London. or even by Michigan avenue?" he said. “How many of you in this class leave a store having purchased just what you wanted in the way of clothes?
“I am willing to-say that our descend- ants a hundred years from now will look back on our time with contempt for, our slavishness In matters of dress. Why can’t our college women set the standard of dressing? The simple dress of the college girl of fifteen or twenty years ago was attractive but above all sensible.”
Interesting comments from an age when apparently college co-eds dressed more sensibly than women of fashion.

Perhaps they still do?

Women's fashion would, FWIW, really change in this era, courtesy of the Great War. As noted here previously, women went to work in large numbers during World War One in factories and on farms and this in turn mean that restrictive clothing that had been fashionable had to go.  Indeed the war brought about a permanent change in women's undergarments, according to the Roads To The Great War blog, which goes to show the truth, once again, of Holscher's Fourth Law of History.

 Women war workers in dormitory, 1917.

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