Kaunas Town Hall

July 13th – September 9th

Ladies and Gentlemen in Kaunas: Style of the Twenties and Thirties of Last Century

The exhibition invites to move to the interwar period and take a look at the outfit fashions of Kaunas citizens of that time. The resemblances and differences in clothing of the town dwellers in comparison to the world fashion are visible in the photographs collected at the funds of Kaunas city museum. Indeed, there are very few differences because people of our country were interested in the lifestyle of Europe and followed it. In the interwar period they even said that ladies in Kaunas were daintier than those in France.

 

In the Twenties women got rid of puritanism demanding to strictly hide the body. The rectangular silhouette was created: a short skirt to just below the knees, waistline underlining the hips, a long neck and small head, short hairstyle becoming in fashion. A small bowler shaped hat became an important detail of the costume.

 

The decade of the 1930s experienced the revival of womanliness and tenderness. Women become seductive and mysterious again. The waistline is back to its natural place, the waist being tightened, the hemline is right below the knees or overall long. Women haircut very slightly becomes longer, but long hair still remains out of fashion. Blond and curly hair was fashionable at that time. Hats became the point of fashion: different in size, small and flat like pancakes they hardly stayed on the top of the head.

 

In the Thirties a lot of beauty salons were set up. Women used hot steam and leaden “bigudi” rollers weighing a few kilograms to curl the hair, they performed a manicure. Beauty became a kind of duty and commodity. Women were seeking to be very beautiful and this strive was supported by an emerging beauty industry.

 

Men’s fashion in comparison to women was surprisingly conservative. In the interwar period only the details of men’s suit experienced some basic changes. Men in town always had a walking-stick, which was an obligatory detail of the suit. The stick symbolized an umbrella as men’s fashion was strongly influenced by London. White gloves were to be worn when going to a party with dancing because touching a lady’s back with a sweaty hand was not allowed.

 

You are kindly invited to come to the fashion salon present at the exhibition and see what has been made by the participants of creative workshops. You will be able to try on their creations that you like the most and certainly have a photo taken at the photo studio „Little Paris“!

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