Lingerie By Decade- 1940's

We're moving right along on our monthly mini-series Lingerie By Decade! This month is the 1940s. In case you're behind, read up on the 1920's and 1930s in my past posts. 


I'm not going to lie, I've been tempted to sit on a curb and fix my stockings too! In the 1940's stockings are a big deal. However, they are hard to come by and afford with war time rationing. Pantyhose or tights are not invented until the 1960's so women are still using suspender belts or clips attached to girdles to hold their stockings up. More and more women are in the work force during war time, and suits are becoming more common. As is the trend of separates (bras and tap pants) and rubberized shape wear that started in the late 1930's. 


If women ran out of stockings, they painted them on. "Liquid stockings" start to line the shelves and make-up aisles. 


Three piece sets were very popular in the 1940's. To give women more freedom garter or suspender belts come into fashion. Worn over tap pants and with a bra. Your slip would cover all of that.


Girdles are also a staple. With more and more rubberized fabrics hitting the market, these will keep your shape! Attached with stocking clips, of course! 


The soft rounder shape of the bra cup in the 1930's becomes much pointier in the 1940s. The bullet bra is invented with circular stitched cone shape cups. To provide lift as well as projection, the cup has many seams. This look will continue on in the 1950's and early 60's. 


Above is a 1940s Jantzen Whirlpool stitched bullet bra that sold recently from my shop. I'm always on the hunt for these! 


And finally, I leave you with some glamour. 1940's films and film noir have some of the best fashion. Long gowns and peignoirs fill the boudoir scenes. This may not have been the average lady's look, but it sure inspired all to dream and stay gorgeous during a difficult time! Veronica Lake above. Rita Hayworth below.


This concludes our history of 1940's lingerie. Stay tuned for next month's installment- the 1950s! Afraid to miss out? Sign up for my monthly newsletter or follow on bloglovin'




Bobbins: Davidow's War Time Patent

It starts with this. US Patent No.2318295.


I love to do research on my vintage finds, but when I discovered the US Patent No. label on the inside of a recently acquired Davidow vintage wool jacket, I decided to do a little more digging. Fashions, especially in this day and age, are rarely patented.


Davidow was a high end women's suit and coat designer / tailor/ manufacturer that started out as William Davidow and Sons in the late 19th century. Eventually they became Davidow and were carried on the high fashion floors of the best department stores in the nation, well known for their expert tailoring. By the 1960's they primarily focused on tweed "Chanel" styles and replicas.


The jacket I have seemed to date before the 1960s and has some wonderfully interesting seam work and details. Besides the lovely chevron breast pockets, I noticed that the seam work was designed with ease in tailoring in mind. Do you see the top button hole in the seam? Having studied tailoring in design school years ago, I also noticed that his jacket doesn't have the usual facings to make up the collar or back up those bound button holes. This is interesting indeed! The patent tells us why. 


I was delighted when I found the patent! Melville Davidow is named the inventor of the special construction of a faceless tailored jacket. He goes into detail with drawings on how the seams of the collar and lapel will be handled, so they don't show. He also goes into detail on the bound buttonholes. The patent was filed in 1942 and issued in 1943. The patent was a way to save hard to get nice fabric and woolens during war time rations. 


Above are some, albeit fuzzy, shots of the details. I love discovering more about fashion history, and I find patents on apparel construction to be so interesting! Especially for the wartime effort! If you'd love to own a piece of tailoring history or just simply need a cool red wool jacket, this marvelous Davidow jacket is available in my shop


All photos copyright of Bobbins and Bombshells. Patent illustration from Google Patents. Read more about Melville Davidow's patent here