The ’30s were an interesting time in fashion. The dresses were often flowery, or patterned which not only helped to hide wear, but was a function of what types of fabrics were most available and affordable. Clothing had to be practical, but they also added embellishments that made their clothing sometimes very stylish. At a time when Art Deco was a trend among the wealthy, the average person was wearing more traditional patterns, but with some lovely twists. Below are fashions worn by regular people during the Great Depression, some of which are surprisingly stylish ensembles.
We all know that they made do with what they had on hand. And, most mothers and wives were very resourceful. They were able to stay up to date with some of the fashion trends, making or altering nearly all of their family’s clothing to save money.
Men wore suits and farmers or workmen wore overalls. Nearly always, the men wore a button-up shirt under their overalls.
Details like nice buttons were used to add interest to dresses and blouses. These decorative notions were often re-used on other clothing pieces later on.
Children wore a lot of hand-me-downs, although occasionally got something new. They often had play clothes, second best, and Sunday best, and that was it, if they even had that much.
Shoes were usually practical: boots, oxfords, and saddle shoes were the order of the day.