From Rationing to Ravishing

September 18, 2014 – March 8, 2015

The Transformation of Women’s Clothing in the 1940s and 1950s

From jumpsuits to evening gowns, this exhibition will feature rare examples of haute couture and Vancouver-made clothing and accessories that reflect how WWII changed society. During the war, fashion designers emphasized manliness. In peacetime, a womanly silhouette returned. Then, in the 1950s, girlishness became the rage.


From the collections of guest curators Ivan Sayers and Claus Jahnke̶—the team that created Art Deco Chic—and the vaults of the Museum of Vancouver, From Rationing to Ravishing will present more than 80 garments. Highlights include: wartime wedding dresses, Boeing Vancouver overalls, cocktail dresses, and fashions designed by renowned European couturiers, including Christian Dior, Cristóbal Balenciaga, and Elsa Schiaparelli.

This exhibition demonstrates how historical events shape our daily lives and have lasting impacts.  It will include features that engage families, including an activity station for kids and adults alike, and the opportunity to virtually try on period garments.




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