For the Debs, the Dolls, and Dames

gatsbymovie:  Prepare for the Summer of Gatsby - in theaters May 10! Follow us on Tumblr.….If you’re not excited for this we can’t be friends…

 I read The Great Gatsby in high school and F. Scott Fitzgerald had me at Hello… he is like Nicolas Sparks on steroids.  His poetic writing paints beautiful pictures with no need for images…BUT this film should be a film to end all films.

When I interned at Brooks Brothers in NYC last year they were preparing the Gatsby line that Brooks Brothers is currently carrying…therefore it is safe to say this hype has been around for a while

Fitzgerald often referred to Brooks Brothers in his writings as it is regarded as the ultimate-gentlemen’s attire of an all-American man of distinct class.

The appeal of a Gatsby time…

It’s 1922…

…Sue Wong models in L.A

the 20’s were roaring for a reason…
The passing of bustles and corsets allowed designers to approach more opportunity and freedom.

Now let’s be clear…
our current general idea of a 20’s look is the flapper…which did not emerge until 1926.

Before flappers…High fashion was concentrated on the richer women of society. 

“New and colorful fabrics echoed the joy felt by a war weary population following the end of hostilities.”

“Hemlines rose for most of the decade but dropped slightly toward the end.” 

Prints were big 
T-strap bar shoes 

Waistline dropped
Peter pan collars

Ralph Lauren

Getting Dolled up… after all you want to be the bee’s knees at Jay’s garden party don’t you?!

Fabrics for Gatsby
  • Solids
  • Tie dye
  • Stripes, polka dots, and Simple geometrics
  • Hawaiian or batik – unless you’ve traveled there in the 20s/30s which was unusual.
  • Pastels and light tones
  • Dark, heavy tones
  • Florals
  • Any pattern with text
  • Patterns à la Raoul Dufy
  • Don’t try until you really know your fabrics
  • Chiffon
  • Denim or chambray
  • Matte
  • Shiny*
* About shiny fabrics like satin and charmuese: they were used for daywear but it takes an expert to get the look right so proceed with great caution.

Gatsby Dress for Women
  • Dropped Waist
  • Light,soft natural fabrics (silk, georgette, chiffon)
  • Hem just below knee (longer for early ’20s)
  • Soft colors, pastels, muted prints
  • Evening wear, beaded gowns
  • The “Untouchables” look — fringed poly shift & feather boa
  • Miniskirts
  • Cloche or cloche brim hat
  • Sequined headband

  • Seamed hose, tights
  • Hose rolled at knee
  • Fishnets, jet black hose
  • Neat grooming
  • Bra straps showing
  • Accessories: shawls, clutch bag, parasols, wrapped head scarves
  • Cell phones, water bottles
  • Shoes: Lower heeled pumps, louis heels, small straps
  • Try a “character shoe” from a dance shop
  • TIP: Don’t ruin your vintage shoes on the lawn; bring modern backups for walking
  • Sandals, bare legs
  • Spike heels, pointed toes
  • Fat rubber wide soles
  • Long hair: pulled back into knot at neck, marcelled into waves around face
  • Shorter hair: curled like Clara Bow, or straight bob with bangs
  • Long flowing hair was for little girls only
  • Perky Meg Ryan flips
Yes, yes, yes!
No, no, no!

Fabric Samples from the 1920s

Now… if you are hooked on F. Scott Fitzgerald and haven’t yet read the short story “Bernice Bob’s Her Hair,” you should!  This is also story a portrayl of society and its parameters.

“the bob” was reintroduced by actress Louise Brooks in the late 1920s. The hairstyles of Hollywood stars were copied by women all over the world and womens magazines carried articles on how to achieve the current look.”

You are now ready to be the cat’s meow!–(20’s slang is great) Just don’t take any wooden nickels.



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