1920 Fashions from Delineator Magazine

When we think of the 1920′s, often people think of flappers, jazz, short skirts, and the Charleston.

Yet all of the illustrations shown here are from 1920, and they appear quite different than that image.

After all, this was right after the ‘teens had ended, and the Edwardian era was less than a decade ago. So you can definitely see the influence of those earlier times, as well as the turn towards the more modern styles of the 1920′s. Let’s explore some fashions now from the March 1920 issue of the Delineator magazine.

1920 vintage fashion

“Afternoon Modes: Skirts carry off the trimming honors while waists are becoming in their simplicity.”

You can read all of the outfit descriptions on the magazine page, but here is one example, from the pink dress shown in the image above:

“A peplum, so sure of itself, doesn’t fear to tread where the fashionable tunic also walks. The straight peplum is gathered. Use silk voile or crepe de Chine over a satin, crepe meteor or serge drop skirt, or use Georgette, silk voile, crepe de Chine, foulard, crepe meteor, taffeta, radium or net alone.”

1920 Vintage Fashion

“A New Season Prepares for Outdoor Life: Riding Costume, Smart Eton, Short Coat and Bloused Suits, Raglan and Cape Effects”

Here is the description of the outfit on the bottom left of the page:

“A new Eton costume distinguishes itself by a straight peplum which is joined to a suspender vestee. The skirt is two-pieced. Use tricotine, gabardine, serge or taffeta.”

1920 Vintage Fashion

“Simple Spring Modes Vary in Design: Pockets Widen the Hip of the One-Piece Frock and Overblouse and Kimono and Long Body are Smart”

The dress on the bottom right of the above image is described this way:

“Contrasting fabrics emphasize the style of the long body in a one-piece dress. The lower part is straight and a blouse-body lining is offered. Use tricotine, gabardine, serge, soft twills, checks, etc. alone or with satin, etc.”

1920 Vintage Fashion

“The Spring Frock: Youthful Coatee and Overblouse Accordian Plaits and Side Draperies in Tailored Effect”

As far as the blue outfit in the upper left,

“The short coat is new and the coatee, as part of a dress, even newer. It is very young-looking and gives the effect of a little suit. There is a blouse body lining and the separate straight skirt is in one piece. Use tricolette, serge, gabardine, or checks, or satin, charmeuse or taffeta.”

Finally, here is one final page from this fashion spread from 1920.

1920 Vintage Fashion

“Styles Range from Short Bolero to Low Bloused Waistline: The French Ease of Line Appears in Both Silk and Wool”

I absolutely love the outfit on the bottom left. I think it might be my favorite one of all, in fact! Here is how the magazine describes it:

“A bib sash, a straight skirt, and a waist that can be made of Georgette when the rest is satin, etc., account for the success of a Spring frock. There is a blouse body lining.”

So this is one small glimpse into the world of fashion at the very beginning of the 1920′s. I hope you enjoyed it, and if you like you can look up some fashion on this website from later in the decade – for example, here and here are some from 1926; here is some French fashion from 1922, and here are some house dresses from 1921.

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