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The 1920 JAZZ SUIT

herringbonekid

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some slightly more sedate 'jazz' era suits, 1919:


collegian1919.jpg
 

Micawber

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herringbonekid said:
some slightly more sedate 'jazz' era suits, 1919:


collegian1919.jpg


Now you see apart from the pocket placement the second on the left is somewhat like a series of hunt / riding / gamekeeper coats that I've had made up in my own cloth over the past couple of years.
 

H.Johnson

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Yes, and occasionally one sees vintage 'pinks' with the same waist-seam and four panelled back construction. Definitely a riding (and probably a hunting) influence at work, I suspect, but if you look at late 19th C military tunics, they have that construction too. Probably that's where the original influence comes from?
 

Micawber

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H.Johnson said:
Yes, and occasionally one sees vintage 'pinks' with the same waist-seam and four panelled back construction. Definitely a riding (and probably a hunting) influence at work, I suspect, but if you look at late 19th C military tunics, they have that construction too. Probably that's where the original influence comes from?

I believe you are right Mr Johnson. The panelled or Guardsman's back and centre waist seam were very common in both military and civilian wear back to the Regency period and beyond. A friend of mine has one of his forebears, brown velvet jackets which was made up in in the late 19th C, they were common garments amongst country folk. The relative in question was a Suffolk head horseman - a breed of men known for their flamboyant and distinctive jackets and trousers.
 

herringbonekid

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Qirrel said:
...I like the coat to the far right, with those interesting on-seam pockets.

this was a bit of an experimental period. pockets went vertically, horizontally or forty five degrees. from Sears 1920:

1920jazzsuits.jpg



look at the small diagrams of each jacket at the bottom of the page.
there's some very interesting stuff going on in men's clothing of the 20s.
 

Fidena

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These guys are wearing jazzish suits, or ones at least from that three year era.

What material are they made from? They look pretty thick.
 
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Two Types

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Here's a British take on the 'Jazz suit' from the 1940s film 'Brighton Rock'. It's set in the 1930s, so I suppose that British criminals of the period had adopted the look of the 1920s. It looks fantastic - an updated version of the original that looks rather more comfortable.

Wideboys.jpg


WilliamHartnell-BrightonRock.jpg


Wideboyssuitback.jpg
 

Two Types

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Alright, now that suit is quite awesome. Good example of why you need heavy cloths to pull off certain cuts.

I recently gave a lecture on Fashion in British Cinema (1930 to 1960) and chose that suit as my favourite. They aren't 'jazz suits' but there are a number of splendid suits in the same film, all worn by 'wide boys':

Look at the details on the back of this one:

backofjacket.jpg


The front view is also pretty good:
BrightonRock-Atenborough.jpg

Attenborough-BrightonRock-1.jpg


I love the bold stripes on this one:

NigelStock-BrightonRock.jpg
 

herringbonekid

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Here's a British take on the 'Jazz suit' from the 1940s film 'Brighton Rock'. It's set in the 1930s, so I suppose that British criminals of the period had adopted the look of the 1920s.

i see what you mean about the resemblance between the check suit and the 'jazz' suit (the broad padded shoulders and wide trousers being the main difference) although i wonder if they were emulating the 20s in that film or just going for a general 'flashy' 'spiv' look that was the dress code of the underworld criminal of the 30s ?
the styles are similar to the French 30s gangster look with the bold patterns and narrow-brimmed hats:


french2c.jpg




p.s. i wonder where Pinkie's iconic suit resides now.
 
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Shangas

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It flopped badly. In one sense, it was ahead of its time in trying to latch onto the jazz phenomenon. Heck, jazz was still a newborn baby in 1920.

I know I'm INCREDIBLY late to this party, but the title of the thread sounded interesting to me.

I have to admit, that suit on the first page is something else. I would never wear it.

I'd just like to say that jazz wasn't exactly a 'baby' in 1920. Jazz was a distinct (if young) musical genre by that time. By the second half of the 1910s, ragtime music was already old-hat, and that was when Jazz started taking over. So it wasn't the 'new kid on the block' in 1920. It wasn't very much accepted yet, but it wasn't exactly brand new.
 

Two Types

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i see what you mean about the resemblance between the check suit and the 'jazz' suit (the broad padded shoulders and wide trousers being the main difference) although i wonder if they were emulating the 20s in that film or just going for a general 'flashy' 'spiv' look that was the dress code of the underworld criminal of the 30s ?
the styles are similar to the French 30s gangster look with the bold patterns and narrow-brimmed hats:


french2c.jpg




p.s. i wonder where Pinkie's iconic suit resides now.


On the question of whether Billy Hartnell's suit is actually a jazz suit: I would point to the extreme slant of the pockets and the very close positioning of the three buttons, both of which are hallmarks of the jazz suit and which are not really in keeping with the details of other 'wide boy' clothing of the period. I had never even heard the expression 'jazz suit' until I showed these pics to a London-based tailor (Huntsman trained) who identified it as such.
The use of this suit, in a 1930s based film, could have been intended to distinguish Hartnell's character from Attenborough's much younger Pinkie.
 

herringbonekid

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I would point to the extreme slant of the pockets and the very close positioning of the three buttons, both of which are hallmarks of the jazz suit and which are not really in keeping with the details of other 'wide boy' clothing of the period.

those details borrowed from the earlier suit would make it a jazz-influenced suit, not an actual jazz suit. the broad padded shoulders and wide legs disqualify it from being an actual jazz suit.
stop me if i'm being too pedantic. ;)
 

Fidena

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It seems like a lot of the "Boardwalk Empire" suits are jazz suits. High and close button placement, rather long jackets, pinched waists and narrow trousers.
 

Two Types

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those details borrowed from the earlier suit would make it a jazz-influenced suit, not an actual jazz suit. the broad padded shoulders and wide legs disqualify it from being an actual jazz suit.
stop me if i'm being too pedantic. ;)

Don't worry - I don't consider that pedantic: you are just being technically accurate, I suppose. Mind you, i shall now have to check back through the film to see what how trousers are cut. Something in the back of my mind is telling me they are rather pegged. I will also check the book to see if that describes the suit.
My suspicion is that the costume designer followed something in the book, but designed it through 30s/40s eyes. Thus creating a rather impressive hybrid. To be honest, I think the Billy Hartnell suit is far nicer than the original jazz suits.
I'll report back when I have checked up on the details from film and book.
 

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