KHS 2008 Exhibits

Meatloaf Again?

The Lang Family

The Dining Room

Following World War II, there was renewed interest in the domestic world. The neat little houses behind white picket fences, full of modern appliances, symbolized the 1950s family: stay-at-home moms and working dads complete the picture of the traditional American family, which is often politically referenced today.Photos of upstairs for elderly 003 rev

During World War II, there was a ration on the amount of cloth used in making each garment, so 1940s women’s fashion embraced a narrow rather tailored silhouette out of necessity. Following the war, Christian Dior, a French couturier, introduced the “New Look” in 1947, which featured a nipped-in waist and a voluminous skirt. This style quickly got translated into all levels of fashion. This light airy look seemed just right for the social life of optimistic postwar America: coffee with a neighbor or a church social, and an emphasis on family. The clothing here is from local residents and may not be Parisian, but certainly demonstrates how quickly fashion trickled down from European couture.

Fashion exists wScene from Meatloaf Againhen people have enough money and leisure time to devote to it; add globalization (that TV in the corner) and a cheap labor market, and fashion will flourish and change at the astonishing pace it does today.

The 1950s was a prosperous and particularly optimistic time for Americans, and it is evidenced by the kind of clothes people chose to wear.
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