Thursday, February 20, 2014

No Shocking Glimpse of Stocking

Photo by Frank Micklethwaite
It must have been awkward and difficult to canoe in those long skirts and fussy picture hats – to say nothing of dangerous if you capsized. Underneath those dresses, ladies wore steel-boned corsets, lace-edged chemises, ruffled, embroidered, pleated, or flounced petticoats, knee-length drawers, and stockings. Not exactly swimwear, or comfortable for energetic summer activities. 

Eaton's Catalogue 1913-14

Eaton's Catalogue 1913-14
 These elegant styles are from the Eaton’s 1913-1914 Fall and Winter Catalogue.

Eaton's Catalogue 1920-21
During the war, hemlines were already rising to show a bit more of a “glimpse of stocking”, which Cole Porter rightly pointed out in his 1934 hit, “Anything Goes”, had once been considered shocking. Perhaps more shocking are the prices, which seem to have more than tripled in only 7 years.

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