Category Archives: Fashion

Fashion in World War I: September 1916

The September 1916 issue of Les Élégances Parisiennes contained some articles that laid bare the very real economic and political rivalry between the French and German fashion industries. It reported with approval on an initiative to mark all goods produced … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I – July 1916

In July 1917, the contradictions underpinning Paris haute couture were more apparent than ever. On July 1 the Allied armies embarked on the assault that was to become known as the Battle of the Somme, costing an unprecedented 1 million … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: June 1916

The June 1916 issue of Les Elégances Parisiennes had a slightly different format from the first two numbers. The tension between information relevant to fashion professionals and articles advising couture clients what to buy was resolved by cutting the section … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: May 1916

The second issue of Les Elégances Parisiennes opened with a revealing discussion of the difficulties facing the French fashion industry in wartime. The Lyon trade fair for fashion trades the previous month had been a huge success, with large orders … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: April 1916

In April 1916, the first issue of Les Elegances Parisiennes appeared, incorporating some of the journalists and features from Le Style Parisien, but with stronger links to French couture and luxury textile trades. The contents were an uneasy mixture of … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: March 1916

For March 1916, we return to American Vogue, where the war was seen as having a broadly positive effect on the fashion industry. An article with the long-winded title  ‘The Warp and Woof of Spring: France is producing some of … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: February 1916

In February 1916, Le Style Parisien issued its final number. In a statement to its subscribers, it clarified that this was for moral reasons as much as for economic ones. It had aimed to create a publication that would speak … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: January 2016

The January 1916 edition of ‘Le Style Parisien’ promoted some new trends for the coming season, including some innovative fashion fabrics produced by the leading French manufacturers. There were silks sold with lines of toning braid or fringing stitched on, … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: December 1915

The ‘Fete Parisienne’ of couture fashion in New York generated welcome publicity for Paris couturiers – and funds for French orphanages. But it also highlighted some of the tensions between French couture houses which originated designs and American wholesalers and … Continue reading

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Fashion in World War I: November 1915

The big fashion story of November 1915 was the ‘Fete Parisienne’ organised in New York by the ‘Syndicat de Defense de la Couture Parisienne’. Its centrepiece was a short play by Roger Boutet de Monvel with a scenario that explicitly … Continue reading

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