The Women’s Voluntary Services was publicly launched on 16th June 1938 with the aim to recruit women who could help in the eventuality of war. These women would eventually between 1939 and 1945 assist ARP wardens, escort evacuees, provide mobile canteens, organize fundraising drives, manage clothing depots, and assist the local authorities in any manner needed. The WVS members quickly became recognizable with their distinctive teal green uniform consisting of a dress, beret, great coat, scarf, overalls, and skirt suit on more formal business. Read on to find out how the WVS was set up in Ulster and how the uniform was a key part of a woman’s role as a member of the WVS.
This week my blog posts will concentrate on the lives of Irish women during World War Two. This is a particular area of interest as I have a long time interest of the roles of women during World War Two; particularly the lives of ordinary women on the British or Irish Home Front. This blog post looks at what effect rationing had on the lives of Irish women and how they managed to continue as ‘normal’ despite shortages and stress over loved ones away at war.
Happy Irish Fashion Friday! In what I hope will be a regular feature on the blog I hope to feature some aspect of Irish fashion on at least one Friday a month. Either in the form of a profile on a designer or style or delving deeper into aspects of Irish fashion and style! This particular blog post concentrates on Fabulous Fifties fashion in Ireland and how Ireland was as fashionable as the rest of the world. Without further ado let’s put our best dress on and pull up our stockings and delve into the post!
I have been obsessed with everything old from a young age. Some of my earliest memories are watching such classics as Gilda and How To Marry A Millionaire with my grandmother who grew up in the generation that those films were made in. My grandmother taught me how to pin-curl my hair, give myself a manicure with red nails, how to wear seamed stockings and most importantly for every vintage aficionado how to choose your colour of red lipstick and how to apply it properly.
The enduring image of the 1920s t is that of a young, thin, glamourous and often wealthy young woman with bobbed hair, short skirts and red lipstick. Think Clara Bow or Louise Brooks. This glamourous flapper-girl was far from the reality for most women of this period but it didn’t mean that a shop-girl didn’t get her hair bobbed or dream about her next dress. This was the age of growing consumerism and mass-production and the average woman could have a hat, dress or hand-bag just like Louise Brooks. Let’s take a look at what would be in this woman’s hand-bag in the 1920s! A sort of 21st century social media ‘What’s in my bag?’ post but with a 1920s twist!