Saturday, 12 March 2016

Extravagance in Dress

From the Halifax Courier, 11th March 1916.



The National Organising Committee for War Savings has already drawn attention to the use of motor cars for pleasure and to wasteful domestic establishments.  It now wishes to appeal against extravagance in women's dress.  Many women have already recognised that elaboration and variety in dress is bad form in the present crisis, but there is still a large section of the community, both amongst the rich and amongst the less well-to-do, who appear to make little or no difference in their habits.  New clothes should only be bought when absolutely necessary, and these should be durable and suitable for all occasions.  Luxurious forms of, for example, hats, boots, shoes, stockings, gloves, and veils should be avoided.  It is essential not only that money should be saved, but that labour employed in the clothing trades should be set free.  Moreover, expenditure on dress deferred till peace has been secured will serve a useful purpose during the time of trade dislocation which must follow.

[I don't know how successful these exhortations to avoid spending were.  In the Second World War, clothes were rationed, and styles were controlled to avoid waste of fabric - that suggests that just relying on patriotic feeling to avoid extravagance hadn't been entirely successful.]    

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