Longchamp Paris || 1910-1920: Fashion & Races

1910 Prix du conseil municipal

Mise-en-scène: Longchamp Racecourse||Ηippodrome de LongchampBois de Boulogne, Paris, on the banks of the river Seine.

Prologue||Τhe beginning: Sunday, April 27, 1857. The first ever race, in presence of The Emperor Napoleon III, his wife Eugénie and a massive crowd.

Act 1||A prestigious event: The popularity of Longchamp attracted increasingly large crowds; all ranks and classes, le Tout-Paris attended the races. Quick to grasp an opportunity, Parisian couturiers sent models wearing their latest designs, off to mingle with society ladies and gentlemen. Longchamp became one large, bubbling catwalk.

Act 2|| War games: Finishing touches for the first big fashion show were briefly interrupted by conflict. On 3rd August 1914 Germany declared war on France. Would the show be cancelled? Bien sûr que non! Races and Fashion are indelibly imprinted in Paris’ genes.

Epilogue||Fashion revolution: Edwardian bell shaped skirts gave way to hobble skirts, picture hats to cloche hats, hairdos were getting shorter. Paul Poiret was reshaping the female figure setting it free from the constraints of the corset. Art Nouveau was the key trend and couturiers like Jeanne Lanvin, Jacques Doucet and Jeanne Paquin, the key players. And when the Ballets Russes performed Scheherazade in 1910, the opulent and exotic orientalism became the new Paris couture obsession.  Until the war took its toll and colours, materials and cuts became simpler and more practical.

1910 Prix du conseil municipal [deux élégantes]

1912 Hobble skirts and parasols

4 1912

5 1913

6 1913

7 1914

8 1914

9 1914

Towards the end of the decade, hemlines were getting shorter and waistlines lower announcing the arrival of the 1920s and les années folles.

10 1919

11 1919

12 1919

14 1919

16 1920

For more of these amazing images please check Retronaut or Mashable.

All Images: Agence Rol/Gallica via Europeana


10 thoughts on “Longchamp Paris || 1910-1920: Fashion & Races

  1. What fashion plates! The predecessors to the “Street Style” photos that we see of fashion attendees outside the Louvres and passing through the Tulieries during Fashion Week. Delicious! XO

  2. Oh, my, what fun! 🙂 I see a ribbon collar worn high on the neck (1914) and a divine pair of shoes (1919) all in the midst of World War Craziness or just after… One should revisit the past to move forward!
    Lovely post , Lia and Thank You for he Retronaut and Mashable link-ups.

    • Yes, it seems that ribbon collars were in vogue before, but disappeared after the war. My favourite collar lady is the last 1914, the one on the chair. What a posture!
      I love checking Retronaut from time to time… there is always some treasure to be found in their pages 🙂

    • Wow indeed, only thanks to these great blogs Retronaut and Mashable! I kept coming back to them so finally I decided to post some here to spread the love. These are just a few of my favourites. My personal best is the cut out boots in the penultimate pic! Amazing!

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