Insightful look at era of the flapper

As part of this year's iD Dunedin Fashion week, Amy Parsons-King attended a presentation on the Era of the Flapper.

Today I attended a talk given by textile historian Margery Blackman on couturian fashion of the 1920s and 30s, at the Dunedin Art Gallery.

The events organiser, Lynda Cullen, gave a brief overview of the dire state of the world at this time, including the detrimental effects of WWI, the 1918 flu pandemic and the crash of Wall Street, before Margery began her in-depth talk on the clothing and textiles popular with the affluent of this period.

A new era was blossoming, people were tired of being frugal and fearful and the 1920s and 30s established a movement toward fashion and frivolity, for those that could afford it.

Margery spoke about many aspects of fashion during these decades, including the design, cut, techniques and fabrics used. She referenced influential European artists and designers such as Sonia Delaunay, and Raoul Dufy (whose art featured on textiles) fashion designers Coco Chanel, the Callot Soeurs and Madeleine Vionnet (who introduced the ‘bias cut' to the fashion world)

Overall the talk was extremely insightful and revealed the extraordinary craftsmanship involved in creating clothing and textiles of the time. It made me consider the current prevalence of cheap man-made fabrics and how fast and disposable mainstream fashion has become compared to the past.