I have a publishing deadline to meet this week, so I am going to cheat a little and rely on pictures to tell my story. It’s the story of how the idea of sexy people has changed. I’m mostly looking at the last hundred years. And today I’ll talk about the 1920s through the 1970s.
The Roaring Twenties could also be called The Eve of Destruction. But no one looked that far ahead, and everyone wanted to have a good time. For women, a sleek, boyish figure looked best in the drapey dresses and lowered waists. For men, knickers were popular and displayed a sporting lifestyle, no need to work all day long.
The Thirties brought back a more tailored look, and hard times dictated shorter skirts that weren’t too full. Men’s fashion didn’t change a lot, but certainly focused on working for a living.
The Forties were stressful, and carried the threat of war into actual warfare. Women filled in for the men who marched off to war, and were allowed to wear pants and not look so very tiny. Again, men wore suits if they didn’t put on a uniform.
The Fifties rebounded from a decade and a half of tight budgets, and opened up to women in shorts in public. Wow. Working men in offices didn’t change much.
The Sixties brought about changing fashions and shapes along with culture shock and political strife. Women wanted to look thin and wear short skirts. The British Invasion impacted men’s fashions, especially in hair styles.
The Seventies rebelled against short skirts, and went long and wide. Black people were allowed in the fashion photos. Any crazy pattern could find its way into a shirt or dress. But people were still expected to be thin, like Twiggy. Fat people were accepted targets of humor and jokes.
Thanks for reading. We’ll finish this up on Sunday.