Fashion on the Ration exhibition

Published: 04th March 2015

Fashion on the Ration exhibition

A new exhibition at the Imperial War Museum demonstrates how people looked their best during the Second World War, and reveals that politicians encouraged them to do it.

There was much more to fashion between 1939 and 1945 than military uniforms. The Government said Britons should always look their best to improve the morale of the nation.

The best dressed women during the war wore tea dresses, tailored coats, stylish tights with back seams and had their hair pinned back. Men would typically wear trench coats and flat caps.

These styles and the way clothes were produced during the war have continued to influence designers and high street styles ever since.

The Imperial War Museum is marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two with an exhibition entitled Fashion on the Ration: 1940s Street Style, using the styles of the period to show people what life was like in those days.

It opens on Thursday and to publicise the start of the exhibition models mingled with the crowds in the fashions of the day, some wearing the back-seamed tights.

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