What Did Women Wear During the 1930s?

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Women wore fitted dresses, skirts and suits during the 1930s. The style was much more feminine than style of the 1920s, and it put more emphasis on the waistline.

Women wore dresses with fitted waists that included flutter and puff sleeves. Despite the Great Depression, clothing manufacturing continued to evolve, and it was more common to see zippers than ever before. Skirts were usually worn at a mid-calf length.

Skirt suits for women became popular, and women preferred to wear them with shoulder pads and a fitted jacket to emphasize the small waist. Necklines were lower than in the previous decade. The V-neck was very common, and necklines were often embellished with ruffles and lace.

Women often used whatever they could to make their clothes. One common practice was to make dresses out of feedbags. Feed manufacturers would decorate their cotton bags with an attractive print as part of a marketing strategy to get families to buy their feed to recycle the bag into clothing.

Hollywood had a huge influence on women’s fashion during the 1930s. Evening wear styles in particular came directly from movie sets. Evening gowns were backless, floor length and sensual. Flowers made of fabric often adored a shoulder or were affixed at the waist.