Part of the appeal of 1940s fashion is its simplicity- everyday fashions of the ’40s were not brimming with clashing patterns or boatloads of jewellery. Instead, they often utilized muted colours, traditional patterns (like tweed, gingham, and florals), and practical accessories. However, an outfit’s simplicity never meant that one could go out looking dishevelled- even the most basic, utilitarian outfit was paired with a neat hairstyle and on-trend makeup! This approach is so refreshing in our modern world of combined excess and relaxation. An ensemble like the Polyvore one below would have been worn in the ’40s to the shops or out with friends, instead of today’s preferred uniform of athletic bottoms, a tank top, and flip flops.
The beauty of an outfit like this one is that it is both inherently practical and put-together. The tweed skirt and blouse are feminine while also modest and unfussy, and the cardigan adds a light layer that can be removed as needed. A characterful leather satchel can hold whatever one might need on a day out, and the minimal jewellery adds just enough polish to this casual look. This outfit’s simplicity, practicality, and style appeal to me, and these same virtues speak to the attitudes of the World War II years.