There have been many great era’s of fashion, the roaring twenties, swinging sixties and the retro seventies, but born in the eighties I missed these poignant decades.
Fortunately all the great trends come back into fashion and I was lucky enough to experience a night of forties fashion and frolics at London’s Blitz Party.
I dressed for the occasion in a patterned tea dress, nylon stockings and vintage shoes and bag circa 1940, sporting matching red lips and nails for an evening of war- time entertainment.
The party, held under the arches in London’s Shoreditch, was kitted out like an air raid shelter complete with black out curtains, oil lamps, sandbags and gas masks, even the bar menu’s were designed to look like WW2 ration books. And with everyone dressed in traditional forties costumes, ladies donning high waisted skirts, tea dresses and turbans and men dressed in WW2 uniforms, an authentic 1940s experience was created.
But while the location was impressive the limited drink selection was not, ale, apple juice based cocktails and a non-existent selection of soft drinks. Not to forget the pricey selection of sarnies and scotch eggs that I was almost convinced had been advertised at no extra cost?
Having promptly arrived at the party we grabbed one of the few tables close to the stage ready for the night’s entertainment, a swing ban playing renditions of classic 1940s songs, along with top dj’s, while forties newsreels were projected onto the wall. But as I found out if you want to show off your forties jitterbug you’ll wait a long time to be asked, proving forties etiquette doesn’t stand in the noughties.
As the entertainment started the more crowded the party became, leaving us having to fight to keep our seats and peering through the crowds to catch a glimpse of the band.
Not only did the lack of seating cause problems hobut the limited number of ladies loo’s and the time queuing at the party’s two bars to get a drink.
The rest of the evening was spent drinking copious amounts of apple flavoured cocktails after reaching the front of the bar queue, fighting for a space on the dance floor and trying to catch the eye of a sailor or two with my own unqiue version of the lindy hop, only to be shown up by the professional dancers who decided to shame us all.
Needless to say I didn’t find my WW2 hero and thought it best to hang up my dancing shoes.