I have a definite weakness for the film noir genre; especially what would be considered “B” 1940s films within this category. Black Angel (1946) falls within these parameters: a film noir, somewhat low-grade production, but is a bit of a gem fashion-wise. The film was made right at the crossroads of the decade’s styles, and is an interesting mix of the early 40s tailored look and the slight softening that would come with the late 40s. I hope you’re as inspired by some of the elements and looks as I was! (As usual, click on any images to see a larger version.)
The evening dress she wears in this scene is rather awful in my opinion (it’s covered in long fringe…), but the hair styling is beautiful! The softly-waved front and sides sweep back to be tucked into a low chignon. Which appears to be made up of a trio of bun-like arrangements. I’m itching to try this out for myself!
A checked peplum-jacket suit. You can see all the design details that make this a great little mid 40s suit: multiple darts in the jacket for a close fit, and a deep pleat at the back of the skirt to enable walking.
Some random bits and pieces of other outfits she wears. The open-brim hat (far left) is quite an interesting style (open brims seemed to have been popular around 1944-46, if my magazines are any indication), as is the large ginko-style leaf pin. A close up of another suit–I love how it’s been paired with a higher-neckline blouse and a choker of pearls (center). A “puritan” influenced blouse (far right)–another style very popular during the mid 40s.
I really have a weakness for checked coats and swing jacket styles! I love the beautifully detailed yoke along the shoulder (and the saddle shoulder is so unusual), and deep flair at the center back to give the coat even more swing and volume! It’s hard to see in these pictures, but the sleeves are gathered to a narrow cuff.
A very pretty and interestingly constructed floral dress. The piecing at the waist is so different–I’ve never seen a midriff treatment quite like it. Also: check out the lovely cascade of the peplum at the back–so elegant! Note that although it looks like the dress buttons down the entire front, they are most likely just for show and the dress is accessible through a side seam zipper.
Finally a fun little accessory you don’t see in a lot of films, but was another trendy item in the 40s: the evening snood. Made up of fine netting and gathered to a jeweled band, this is quite a bit of a departure from the chunkier snoods that were popular for casual wear. Very fun!
Did any specific details jump out at you? Seen any movies lately that catch your eye from a fashion standpoint?