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Sartorial Color Photos From 1940 - A Look Back

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by bmulford, Aug 13, 2008.

  1. bmulford

    bmulford Senior member

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    Shameless repost of a story on Fark (at least Edmorel is a regular there) - but immediately thought of SF for reasons that will be obvious in a moment. An Alumni of Indiana University and amateur photographer gave his picture collection to the university. They in turn published it on the web.

    These shots are noteworthy not for their composition, but that they're in color. The slice of life photos combined with familiar muted shades, grants the scenes a shockingly modern quality in their rendition.

    I find I have a swell of nostalgia for a time well before my own. Perhaps seeing the images as timeless makes them more personal, endearing me to them more than I had expected.

    http://webapp1.dlib.indiana.edu/cushman/index.jsp

    The description dates the picture from 1940, with the added notation of "3 Bums...". Okay, so the shoes need some polish, but whoa, bums?!

    [​IMG]


    This guy would get many +1's on WAYWT

    [​IMG]


    How often do you see this many well dressed men in one spot?

    [​IMG]


    So from this to orange skin and spiked hair? Whatever it takes to impress the ladies I suppose...

    [​IMG]


    And this one because I love the notation: "Athletic girl with generous bosoms’’".

    [​IMG]
     
    2 people like this.
  2. PandArts

    PandArts Senior member

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    +100 Bravo!!! Love those photos...my how times have changed!
     
  3. GoSurface

    GoSurface Senior member

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    Those are pretty cool.
     
  4. tlmusic

    tlmusic Senior member

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    Great photos!!!!!!!!
     
  5. JR88

    JR88 Senior member

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    Wonderful. Thanks for sharing.
     
  6. VMan

    VMan Senior member

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    +100 to the last photo
     
  7. winston

    winston Senior member

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    I've had that gallery bookmarked for years and have spent many hours looking through it. I was always struck by how well-dressed the bums were. I recommend the Chicago section.
    Oh, to be able to re-wind the clock. The 60's is where everything started to go wrong, in every way.
     
  8. element02

    element02 Senior member

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  9. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    The derelicts are better-dressed than what one would find at a modern wedding or funeral.
     
  10. Tarmac

    Tarmac Senior member

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    Jesus, the guy in the back could possibly be a bum, but the 2 in the foreground as well? that's amazing...
     
  11. yfyf

    yfyf Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Looking at the guy's short biography, he was quoted as "intolerant of ignorance". Maybe "bum" meant "guy who does nothing but smoke all day". Sort of like "guy who does nothing but go on SF all day" [​IMG]

    I browsed through a bunch of the clothing tagged photos, there's a high proportion of girls in swimsuits, have fun kids.
     
  12. unpainted huffheinz

    unpainted huffheinz Senior member

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    The derelicts are better-dressed than what one would find at a modern wedding or funeral.

    I can only imagine how well turned out people would be to a bum funeral in 1940.
     
  13. w.mj

    w.mj Senior member

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    These are fantastic. Thanks so much for posting them.
     
  14. Sator

    Sator Senior member

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    Take a careful look at the "bum" on the far left and how the shoulder of his coat is cut.

    The shoulder seam appears angled backwards like this:

    [​IMG]

    This is a feature found today only on high end bespoke items. You will see it on a Rubinacci but not on an Attolini, Kiton, Brioni, Oxxford, or Borelli. It is a sign that the arm scye has been cut as a backwardly angled oval shape, to help make the scye depth as shallow as possible. It is also thought to make the collar snugger and improves the fit around the neck-shoulder area.
     
  15. yfyf

    yfyf Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    I found this a really nice example of a sack suit:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  16. grimslade

    grimslade Senior member

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    Take a careful look at the "bum" on the far left and how the shoulder of his coat is cut.

    The shoulder seam appears angled backwards like this:
    This is a feature found today only on high end bespoke items. You will see it on a Rubinacci but not on an Attolini, Kiton, Brioni, Oxxford, or Borelli. It is a sign that the arm scye has been cut as a backwardly angled oval shape, to help make the scye depth as shallow as possible. It is also thought to make the collar snugger and improves the fit around the neck-shoulder area.


    This is hyperbole. You'll also find it on Vestimenta RTW, among other places. IIRC, David Chu might have done some of his shoulders that way the first year, but I couldn't swear to it.
     
  17. tlmusic

    tlmusic Senior member

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    Take a careful look at the "bum" on the far left and how the shoulder of his coat is cut.

    The shoulder seam appears angled backwards like this:

    [​IMG]


    Sator, that's a great observation. I have also noticed this feature on vintage clothing.

    This is a suit from the late 1940's:
    [​IMG]
    This is a feature found today only on high end bespoke items. You will see it on a Rubinacci but not on an Attolini, Kiton, Brioni, Oxxford, or Borelli.

    But wait! What's going on here? This is an Oxxford DB I bought on ebay new with tags--it has to be only a couple years old. It also has that kind of shoulder seam.
    [​IMG]
     
  18. luftvier

    luftvier Senior member

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    If only men still had such style.
     
  19. Sator

    Sator Senior member

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    This is hyperbole. You'll also find it on Vestimenta RTW, among other places. IIRC, David Chu might have done some of his shoulders that way the first year, but I couldn't swear to it.

    I've personally never seen it on RTW. It is certainly possible but takes a bit more effort in the making up of the coat. It is an effort most makers won't make and certainly not any maker that a bum might wear today.
     
  20. spectre

    spectre Senior member

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    Bums, coats, seams...who cares. The pic of the girl is beautiful.
     

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