January 20, 2012

An engaging Life magazine look at yesteryear fashion shows

As the quest to stock up my wardrobe with some painfully needed vintage essentials continues, I find myself digging deeper and deeper around the web for budget-friendly clothing sources. In the process of doing so, I've also encountered some completely charming sites that tie into the subject of old school threads, but which are not actually selling them.

Case in point, I recently came upon a thoroughly captivating slideshow on the official Time magazine website that includes more than thirty photographs of vintage fashion shows. This is the sort of lose-yourself-in-wonderment-of-it-all grouping of images that inspires and enthrals vintage fashion lovers like us to no end.

Long before the days when (most) fashion shows turned into three ring circuses full of clothes that few people would ever actually wear outside of a costume party, and where those seated in the front row mattered more than the cloths parading down the runway, fashion shows offered real world women (albeit often ones of means) the ability to view the latest and most exciting new styles that emerged each year.


As some of the photographs (like the one pictured above of a 1950s model sporting an elegant fur coat) in this stellar round-up demonstrate, fashion show patrons were (often) not only encouraged to interact with the models, but to touch and admire the clothing firsthand (as, designers of the time rightfully felt that this would better help customers decide which garments they'd like to order for themselves).

I think there was something to markedly more appealing about fashion shows of the past, which often put the focus on the clothing itself, instead of on the designer's flights of fancy (or ego!), atomically priced  designs, scarily thin models, or over-the-top publicity stunts. This isn't to say that I'm jaded when it comes to all modern fashion shows (or that I think all of them fall into the same modern camp), rather that the "real world", attainable aspect that shows of the past held appeals to me infinitely more.

Whether you're shopping for vintage clothes, looking for wardrobe inspiration, or simply love seeing fashionable images from decades gone by, I hope that you'll enjoy this beautiful assortment of Time magazine fashion runway images as much as I did.

Wishing you each a fantastic, marvellously stylish weekend, sweet dears!


  1. Oh I love this, Jessica! Imagine!

    This would be so much better in the way of actually wanting to purchase clothing. It seems modern fashion shows are simply to show how eccentric the designer can be!

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you! I find these pictures inspiring :)

  3. When I started work 40 years ago the 2 major department stores in Adelaide South Australia used to hold regular fashion shows of the clothing lines available in their stores. The Fashion Shows were usually on a Wednesday and many a dewy eyed young South Aussie would stand transfixed and dream including me :o)