Fashion illustrations from 1938

June 1938 fashion

The June 1938 issue of McCall’s magazine features some beautiful vintage fashion illustrations, full of color and style.

Skirts at this time in the late 1930′s seem to fall right below the knees, waists were cinched tight, and overall the look was very feminine. Here are a few of my favorite sketches from this issue (though it was very hard to choose), along with the accompanying descriptions from the magazine.

Evening gowns, 1938

“A ROMANTIC GOWN with a wide wide skirt. This year wide skirts are usually just gathered. The black lace is shown over a black slip. They are also putting black over flesh colored chiffon with lovely effect. No. 9768.

“THE CORSET IDEA has influenced the striped bolero frock. Boned satin ‘corsets’ are actually worn on the outside of some French evening frocks. This girdle is something like them, but it looks much prettier. No. 9777.”

Vacation Varieties, 1938

“THE SHIRTWAIST FROCK has taken up the bloused silhouette. In the white dress the way the fullness radiates outward from the center is an important new detail. It is supposed to slim the waistline. And it does, too. No. 9785.
“AN UMBRELLA-GORED SKIRT and a balloon make this year’s two-piece frock. The bloused fullness of the pink frock disappears into tucks at the lower edge, so one does not have any bunchiness inside the skirt. No. 9746.
“A SHIRRED WAISTLINE is very graceful if there is only slight fullness in the shirrings and if the dress has unbroken lines from the shoulder to hem. All of which is true about the princess dress above with its shirred waist. No. 9760.”

Bolero Ensembles, 1938

“PRINTED BOLEROS are charming with plain crepe frocks. The print may be crepe too, or linen, or cotton. In this bolero frock both are rayon. The dress has a new, high, draped, straight-across neckline. That kind of a neckline looks ever so nice under a jacket. No. 9751.
“PUTTING ODD COLORS together is getting to be a kind of game this year. You see what happens when rust and turquoise join up. The dress under the turquoise bolero is one of those long slim ones. Its beltless front produces the smart long-legged effect. No. 9755.”

If it's sheer, it's chic, 1938

“THE NEW LOOSENESS in clothes is just right for chiffon. The brown chiffon dress has plenty of this easy fullness and, though simple, it is lovely. Notice that bow ties are narrower. No. 9748.
“THIN DARK DRESSES like this navy shirtwaister are very chic, and pink is newer than white for accent. Printed slips are also being much used. No. 9747.
“PINK is the preferred color this year – dawn pink, azalia, cyclamen, dusty, chalky, etc. Lovely with wine, as used here. There are always new ways to shirr a dress. This is the newest. No. 9753.”

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