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* Update 2 September 2006 *
15 June 2006
Clothing & Costume before 1940
A quick sample of historical costumes from the Pacific
region in our world,
for writers and artists. Photos and art from between 1910 to 1945.
This may include daily casual clothing, ceremonial clothing,
and tourist costume. Uniforms may be included.
Some images might be considered Mature
* "Sarongs" *
Nearly every island culture would have a variation on a basic
cotton cloth. Men's and women's variations would often have different
"Sarong" is one familiar name, as is "lava-lava", "pareo", and dozens
for similar everyday wraps. Women's versions could be topless. Men's
versions could go down to the ankle, or up to the armpits.
Here are some sample photos.
Dance poses for the camera.
sarongs are probably cotton: white with
one vivid color overprint:
Red, blue, green, purple etc. This could be everyday costume
* Men's everyday
short sarongs (photo from before
1914, but could be modern dress) *
"Oh-Noes! It's a hoo-man sacrifice!" Posed for the camera,
these guys show
4 action variations on the basic men's sarong.
informal men's & boy's beachware. Loincloths, sarongs, &
These guys are watching the events at some beachside French colonial
Note the colonial Euro kid in "tropical whites".
plantation work wear: Harvesting feis, "mountain bananas". *
Note the machete-style work knife, and a hat that was fashionable for
Hat choice would follow fashion. That looks to be a multi-colored
and I'm guessing that might be a sunflower in the design.
bunches of feis on a pole.
Two-color sarong. He wears a wreath of ferns and leaves.
Headgear fashion that never goes out of fashion.
for fans (& fly-swatter in Paradise) *
Woman with a leaf wreath & sarong cloth. This must be an informal
image) Antoinette, a dancer, in a semi-topless
with braided hair ribbons, and a basket as a purse.
Pascual and his friends are probably
dressed up for a party.
For the women, the white dresses would be OK for church,
(and similar events) if they added a big wide-brimmed floppy white hat.
Hem lines and sleeve length might change through the years.
There are numerous references for
costume & fashion available online & in books.
They do tend to be obsessed with upper-class high fashion.
For informal island costume, you may have to look into anthropology
and historical slice-of-life photos, such as records of informal events,
work photos & family snapshots.