Monday, February 1st, 2010
I was invited to a 40s Hollywood glam party recently at Toronto’s luxurious Royal York Hotel. As per my usual, I Googled all things 40s, hoping to find another blogger’s account of their 40s DIY look. Unfortunately, it wasn’t that easy, although I did find plenty of resources of YouTube for hair and make-up; and then searched through vintage catalogues and photos of 40s actresses for outfit ideas.
Amazingly I just happened to have this white chiffon dress with an accordion skirt (me on left) hanging in my closet waiting for the perfect event! I found this photo of actress/model Veronica Lake (right), circa sometime in the 40s!
My Simple Hollywood Glam 40s Outfit Breakdown:
(background: Although the Cold War was going on, Hollywood, as always, seemed unaffected by global deficiencies. Apparently, ‘The Office of War’ declared movies an essential industry for morale and propaganda. People were starving everywhere, yet the silver screen showed glamour, wealth and abundance. Common women attempted to follow fashionable suit, and although leather and fabric were rationed and even if a woman couldn’t afford furs and jewels, she would be sure to do her hair and shine her shoes.)
Dresses: Ladies wore dresses in the 40s and for a party, the silkier and glamorous the better! Preferably light colors, chiffon, silk, lace and satin. Most common evening gown styles are heart-shaped necklines; small-waisted; and even strapless. Length: long or at least below the knee.
Shoes:The most common worn are medium heel height (not too thin), t-strap or lace ups.
Photo: Inspired 40s Steven Meisel for US Vogue September 2009 featuring Coco Rocha, Karen Elson, Liya Kebede, Sasha Pivovarova, and Viktoriya Sasonkina
Accessories: This is what counts for dressing for any occasion:
- flower, feathers or some other hair decoration
- diamante earrings/pearls
- shoulder pads (to balance big hair) if applicable
- fur stoles
- nylons with a line up the back (that was drawn on by women in the 40s)
Make-Up and Hair:
YouTube is the best source for this!! So many ‘pin-up’ how-to video’s including how to do hair rolls, rockabilly hair and pin-up girl make-up, etc… For my hair, I used bobby pins to stick in a bunch of faux dollar store feathers and a giant flower. I curled using a YouTube video technique.