Vintage 1930s Photo Inspires

11 Jan

{Vintage 1930s Photo Inspires} It can happen any time, any where. You just have to be aware enough to receive it — aesthetic inspiration.

As a tip o’ hat to the lightening-striking muse found in surroundings, this post marks the inaugural entry under a new Thrifty Vintage Chic category: Aesthetic Inspiration.

The ability to create beauty around you — beauty in your personal style and beauty in your home — comes from being able to recognize what lights you up. If something attracts your eye, it usually means something about the overall look, feel or texture speaks to your soul.

By being aware of what those specific elements are, you can then hone your style to reflect your inner being which will always flatter your countenance and naturally compliment your hosting prowess as you welcome guests into your home.

1930s Inspiration

This photo left me awestruck. First, the journalist in me appraised the setting: school girls approximately ages 12 to 18, left-to-right, respectively. Headmistress, center. Mixed demographics. Gated wrought iron scrolls “VS” — likely, initials of the academy.

But, then the vintage fashionista took over — oogling over all the pin curls, the perfectly sexy cropped, but soft bobs, AND, the plethora styles of outerwear with the hint of underlying silhouettes. Yes, I was in heaven when I discovered this photo in a Hell’s Kitchen antique shop.

Amazing fur cuff detail: a beautiful taper, wrapping around the sleeve toward the elbow!

Lastly, my nostalgic romantic self carefully noted, despite the varied ages and dozens of subjects, how the complete image had an overall polish to it, as the group itself had a uniform and very finished look.

Meanwhile, as I thoroughly observed each woman, their coats, shoes, hair styles, and skirts, all have very individual expressions.

It struck me as slightly ironic: This was an age where a mass of people could collectively come together and look as one, thanks to the societal standards expected in proper dressing, and yet, all the while, they could be themselves.

To me, there is something about this concept which is a bit lacking in today’s societal fashion standards.

Love the flairing buttons on the double-breasted jacket.

I do yearn for a little bit more decorum … However, I do wonder if there is more to it then just “proper” dressing, because today we all dress wearing what we will — including pajamas to school — and it’s in the name of “we can do what we want. I am an individual. I have rights and you can’t judge me, or make me do what you want.”

This ideology was adapted as a “freedom” movement … and now, I really question if that is the result we have today, as when you take a group photo in 2011, you will see a mass of individuals, no continuity, no common thread of relatedness.

When I look at this 1930s photo, both exist — continuity and relatedness, plus individuality.

In 2011, we have mass shootings, and in the prior decade we had rampant school bullying leading to suicides and other terrible tragedies. While in 1930, there wasn’t such random acts of violence of individual against masses, or masses against individual (and yet, Americans had more guns and access to weapons back then, than we do now, while we have more therapy and help agencies then they ever did).

Smiling faces and a beautiful silk blouse!

So, does a “no holds barred” stance of personal expression increase the divide between individuals, increase the disconnectedness, or decrease the tensions between parties and promote acceptance?

Because of our millenial liberty to express, do we really have more freedom? Less fear? More acceptance? Less harm? Does the collective fashion standards of a society reflect the overall mentality and conscious of it? Or is this just like comparing apples and oranges?


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