The Flapper fashion era.

title page.pngThroughout the 1920’s a big social and political change occurred. During 1920’s to 1929 the people moved from farms to the urban areas and the economic growth doubled, which the consumers spend on ready to wear clothes. The great migration of the African Americans from the southern country side to the northern cities introduced the black culture, where Jazz and Blue music became popular.

On January 16, 1920 the Volstead Act closed all shops that sold liquor and made liquor selling illegal, which drove the liquor trade underground. The new woman was created in the 1920’s,who was the woman with a bob, smoking and drinking, wearing short skirts, because the hemlines rose during the 1920’s, this exposure of woman’s legs brought about an interest in women’s hosiery.

This style was known as the Flapper style which included a lot of partying. This was possible because the world introduced new technology such as washing machines, vacuum cleaners that decreased her household duties. The availability of birth control increased, which resulted in women having less children. The automobile was introduced, which gave young the autonomy to do what they wanted when they wanted to.

look and silhouetteThe 1920’s silhouette was a straight, square figure, angular with no curves that defined a woman’s shape, which led to a boyish look. A slender body and flat chest was the epitome body shape, woman with bigger breasts flattened it with Symingtton side lacer, which was the 1920’s bra.

In the Wardrobe of a 1920’s woman, there was a basic chiffon dress, a daring blouse worn with a pleated skirt and off coarse a flapper’s dress, which did not define the waistline. The woman’s hemlines rose to just above the knee, which would have been a big shock ten years earlier. Hosiery was now a big fashion trend, because the legs was exposed, they always had to be seen at their very best. Her cupboard also included her little black dress. The wardrobe was all about looking exciting and having fun!

Her wardrobe would also contained a tunic-top and sweater which reached the hip area. Feather headbands and turbans was making her wardrobe bursting.

All the clothes of this era, took the prominence away from the hips, which adds to the shape of the 1920’s.The bob hair and girlish silliness was the way to act. The 1920’s flapper girl’s skirt was short, but her hair had to be even shorter, which was adorned with the legendary cloche hat.

fasbrics textiles

Popular textiles in the 1920’s included beading, furs, features, flowers and lots of lace. These items were worn to special events during the night, to listen to jazz music, get a few drink or go and paint the city. Popular fabrics included a light see-through fabric made of silk or nylon; this piece of fabric is now called chiffon. Other fabrics that was worn during the 1920’s included taffeta, satin, velvet and brocade. Fur was a very popular trend which was worn over straight, curve less cuts; the boyish, square-look silhouette that the 1920’s is so famous for. Fur was very popular during the 1920’s. A trend toward silk, appeared which symbolised a taste for luxury in the 1920’s and as a result cotton became unfashionable and unwearable.


colourpaletteDuring the 1920’s solid colours was used over the usage of patterns because solid colours showed off the 1920’s decorations, such as embroidery, beads and pearls. Early colours were mostly black, blue , tan, deep pink and violet. Colours from the 1920’s was much more vibrant and colourful in relation to previous decades. The flapper girls made the colour usage of black, silver and gold popular, as well as the usage of white and gold. Colours was from a soft muted palette. The colour usage had to pursue the viewer, that an elegant, fashionable , new woman is arising.

The 1920 slang and communication was efficiently used to create new names for the colour schemes which would be appropriate to the era accordingly.

Copacelic champagne : “Copacetic– Awesome. Super cool”

Spiffy yellow: “Spiffy– 1920s slang term for “looking sharp,” usually referring to a man’s appearance”

Hotsy totsy white : “Hotsy-totsy– A hot girl. Something attractive”

Bees knee’s blue: “Bee’s Knees– Something or someone great. A term of affection.”

Bimbo black : Masculine man / ‘macho man’

Red Roulette : “Ritzy– Upscale, elegant. (From the hotel the “Ritz”)”

Glitsy glam : a high sophisticated gold, with a touch of glamour.



For more reading:

Lang, N. (2013) 59 quick slang phrases from the 1920s we should start using again. Available at:

Thomas, P. (2005) Costume history silhouettes 1920-1921 free line drawings. Available at:

1920’s slang (no date) Available at:

Doll, J. (2014) How to sound like the bee’s knees: A dictionary of 1920s slang. Available at:

Glamourdaze (2010) 1920s fashion – Womens dress and style. Available at:

1920s fashion: Styles of the roaring twenties (no date) Available at:

Terms, P.I. (2016) Fashion of the 1920s. Available at: Vintage dancer, D. (2012) 1920’s fashions in Womens clothing. Available at:

THE JAZZ AGE GLOSSARY (no date) Available at:



2 thoughts on “The Flapper fashion era.

    1. Awh wow thank you for the link, i definitely go and check it out. Im super excited for the 20’s trend to return. Thank you for ur feedback and information. Much appreciated.


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