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Thread: Show us your British suits

  1. #371
    I'll Lock Up Two Types's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick D View Post
    They may well have been recycled long before that. Many of the pamphlets put out by the Government encouraged women to cut up old clothes for a variety of uses. One use for old men's felt hats was to make (shudder!) slippers.
    Whenever I think about clothing shortages at that time, it reminds me of the story of an acquaintance of mine (now in his nineties). As a teenager from a very poor South London family, he grew up wearing second hand victorian and edwardian suits. They were heavy, totally out of fashion, and ill-fitting. It was not until he joined the army in 1938 that he was able to afford a new outfit: grey a pale blue suit. But he had little chance to wear it since war was declared. He spent five years as a prisoner of war, then came home desperate to get out of the army and put on his one and only suit. Whilst recovering in hospital he was visited by his mother who told him she had spent all his savings and had pawned his suit. He stills bitter about it!
    "I know I believe in nothing, but is my nothing."

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  7. #377
    I'll Lock Up Two Types's Avatar
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    Earlier on this thread there was a question over what happened with the Burtons patterns. Here is a link to one held in Leeds:
    http://www.movinghere.org.uk/deliver...1.8491/0/1.pdf
    "I know I believe in nothing, but is my nothing."

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  8. #378
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    And here's the head designer marking out canvas in 1949:
    http://www.movinghere.org.uk/deliver...1.8726/0/1.pdf
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  9. #379
    I'll Lock Up herringbonekid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Two Types View Post
    Think about it: There would most likely have been way fewer belt-backs than other jackets in that period. Let's guess that they were mainly worn by younger men (that really is a guess). The thirties is followed by six years of war and then five or so years of rationing.
    Somewhere I have figures for the clothing situation in the winter of 1944/1945. it is truly depressing to read.
    With so little new clothing available, clothes wore out. Furthermore, the men who owned suits went into the forces. For many people this meant regular physical exercise. Many owners of nice suits might have been in office jobs pre-1939. But after a few months of hard military training they changed shape. Poor youths quickly grew taller and filled out. Middle class men developed broader chests and shoulders. So they eventually came home to suits that didn't fit. Ill fitting suits get recycled - passed onto others for workwear, recut for younger brothers to wear etc.

    The result, very few surviving suits.

    That's my theory.

    TT, i think all of those points are almost certainly true. yet, i still think that many of them would have been saved rather than recycled as they would have been expensive, prized jackets and suits for that time. it's amazing, how many suits emerge from the back of closets (even now) and the owner says something like " this was my grandfather's suit from the 30s/ 40s and has been worn very little ".

    however, given that there were fewer belt-backs than any other style i assume that the small amount that did survive are now bought up. Ben Stephens where are you ?

  10. #380
    I'll Lock Up herringbonekid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Two Types View Post
    HBK: I bet you love the 'Oceanic Waves' 8567H cloth.
    yes, very 20s looking. i wouldn't say no to any of those fabrics though. thanks for the links !





    quote: "when selecting your suit the latest vogue is to have a light overcoat made of the same material"

    hadn't heard that before (year was 1931).
    Last edited by herringbonekid; 04-19-2012 at 02:34 AM.

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