HOME PAGE 1900 to 1913 1914 to 1918 1919 to 1929 1930 to 1938 1939 to 1945 1946 to 1950 Other sections

Post-War • Austerity Dressing

"We just wore what we had"• • • The austerity years followed the ending of hostilities.
Postwar dress
Rationing continued after the war had ended. By the time this photograph was taken clothes had been rationed Shops would only sell a small amount to each person. So that everyone had a fair share. for almost a decade.
Everything that could be handed down or altered had been handed down and altered.
This girl is wearing what is probably her only school dress.
It was probably a hand-me-down or second-hand.
The hem appears to be fully let down. A girdle band forms the waist; a feature often seen in clothing from this time. Both are methods of lengthening a dress.
Although fashionable, a girl of this age would not have chosen to wear a dress quite this short and close-fitting unless circumstances dictated. She would not have worn 'T' bar sandals and ankle socks if she had a choice. Her friends would have dressed the same, they had no choice either.
Many girls & young women had never worn a brand new dress. They had never known any different and everyone was in the same boat.

The points rationing system finished when clothing came off coupons The tickets which allowed you to buy things in shops in May 1950 but controls did not fully end until 1953.

About 17 years old  • date about 1948 • Estimate born 1931 ± 3 years

• Surely Fashion only exists when a person is free to choose how they dress.