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Thursday, August 12th 2010

4:44 PM

And the Correct Year Is....




1954!


Yes, this was intentionally tricky, and I'm surprised that  The Vintage Vortex actually got it right.  Hopefully she will pop in to let us all know how she knew it.

It just amazing how different the skirt looks in the correct context, with the right shoes and the natural waistline and the hair and make-up of the period.  But doesn't it still look strange?  We just do not think of this length as being around in the 1950s.

It's pretty obvious that this  never caught on.  The editors of Mademoiselle must have really liked the look to put it on the cover of their College Issue.  Here's what they have to say about it:

This is the Bermuda skirt, a flared flannel fling that's the same length as Bermuda shorts.

Bermuda skirt (ber- mu da skurt),n. 1. A short, shaped, knee-top skirt to be worn on campuses where shorts are legal.  2. A substitute for shorts demanding less in the way of an All-american-Girl figure.

But I can see why so many of you thought 1960s; my guess would have probably been 1964 or 65.  I grew up here in the fashion back-water of America, and this look was big around 1968, and I figure we were about 4 years behind in fashion.

And even in the 1970s, girls at my school were still doing the skirts and knee socks thing.

I'm glad Jonathan made his post because I was hoping someone would reference the skiing skirt that had its moment in the sartorial sun in the late 30s and into the 40s.  It too was wool and was this length.  The skiier wore heavy wool tights beneath.

Thanks for all the thoughtful replies! 


7 Additional Thoughts.

Posted by Lizzie:

Vireya, I know for a fact my mother didn't either, except when wearing shorts!

Em, I'll be on the lookout for more fashion oddities!

Goa, thank you very much!

Karen, now that you mention it, the fabric does look *older* than 60s.

Ms. Vortex, hey, all's fair in love and guessing!

Colleen, stay tuned for more.
Tuesday, August 17th 2010 @ 4:31 PM

Posted by Colleen Ropert:

Thanks for the quiz, super fun! What a surprise 1950's...Leave it to Madamosielle to be ahead of their times!
Saturday, August 14th 2010 @ 9:11 PM

Posted by VintageGoa:

Love your blog a lot...keep on flying!
Saturday, August 14th 2010 @ 3:44 PM

Posted by Karen/Small Earth Vintage:

So interesting! The thing that gave me pause was that the fabric did look flannel-like (and not polyester), so I had thought you might be posting something that was from an earlier time than it appeared (but still guessed later)! It's a very cute look.
Friday, August 13th 2010 @ 7:32 AM

Posted by Em:

Oh, this is great--I never would have guessed 50s because of the length. Please do this sort of feature again--fun and very educational.
Friday, August 13th 2010 @ 5:40 AM

Posted by thevintagevortex:

I'm surprised I got it right. To be completely fair I have that magazine....somewhere in a stack of old fashion mags. I knew it was 50's but took a wild stab at which year because I couldn't remember which year it actually was.

I do agree about the skirt though. It isn't a length one commonly associates with the time. I'll have to go dig that magazine out and look it over again for fun. I think I have a couple more college editions as well.
Friday, August 13th 2010 @ 1:01 AM

Posted by vireya:

Wow! I'm sure my mother never showed her knees in the 50s!
Thursday, August 12th 2010 @ 10:51 PM