3 comments / Posted on by Wiggy Bamforth

If you're a longtime fan of What Katie Did you'll know that our Retro Lingerie range is based on real vintage designs carefully collected over the years by Katie herself. With the help of the lovely Missy Malone, we thought we'd style some true vintage pieces with our beautiful retro lingerie to see if you could spot the difference! 

Vintage Style | Retro Bullet Bra CC41 Austerity Lingerie

This beautiful blue bra (above and below) is a vintage piece Katie found in Déjà Vu Antiques, Cornwall, that shows off perfectly how the spiral stitching of soft cup bras gave them the support required in an age before underwires. Known as "Whirlpool" bras, and popularized by Hollywood Maxwell, these soft bullet bras gave a pretty shape under the fashionable tops and jumpers of the time. 

Vintage Style | Retro Bullet Bra CC41 Austerity Lingerie

As you can see this bra it is mostly made from non-stretch cotton, which just a little elastic as the back for comfort. It has a little bit of padding to keep its shape, but is designed to "lift and separate" the bust instead of creating a modern-style cleavage. In the Fifties, bras usually only came in cup sizes A-D, and frequently bustier women would have to squeeze themselves into a sister size with a bigger band.

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

A word on accessories: vintage shopping is one of Katie's favourite past-times, and as well as these beautiful bra and knickers, the jewellery, hair ribbon, parasol and shoes are all from vintage stores (scroll to the bottom for credits). 

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

And now for the bottoms! Here, Missy's wearing a pair of original vintage CC41 French Knickers with our Padded Bullet Bra. If you're ever vintage shopping and you find pieces labelled CC41, snap them up! The CC41 mark identifies austerity clothing made during the post-war years, ensuring everyone could be dressed properly on their ration coupons. 

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

CC41 clothing is made with the barest minimum of fabric and excess seams. As you can see, the vintage pair of French Knickers (or Tap Panties if you're in the US!) here are made from cotton, fastened with just three buttons. When we established our own range of austerity-style lingerie in 2009, we christened it CC09 in homage, although in the photos below you'll notice that it's made from gorgeous soft satin instead of cotton - not very period accurate but very luxurious! 

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

Missy wears our Padded Bullet Bra here and our CC09 French Knickers! True to the era, the bra is made with a little padding, circle stitching and a non-stretch band. 

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

From behind you can really see how different the shape of the straps are from a modern bra. Set closer together at the front and lower and wider at the back, the straps of this bra are designed to accommodate the high necked, low backed look introduced to Fifties fashion by Dior. 

Vintage Style | Retro French Knickers Tap Panties CC41 Austerity Lingerie

As well as being the perfect underpinnings for your vintage outfits, French Knickers are also a brilliant style to wear over corsets and suspenders, as they act as a mini slip, ensuring your clothes hang perfectly! 
Watch Katie's video to learn more! 

Credits:
Model: Missy Malone
 
Vintage: 
Blue Bra - Deja Vu Antiques
Vintage CC41 French Knickers - Katie's Private Collection
Jewellery and Parasol: Katie's Private Collection
Hair Ribbon: Playclothes Vintage, Burbank
Hairflowers: Shazam Vintage Hairflowers
Mules: Malone's Vintage, Cheltenham

3 comments

  • Posted on by Sheila Webb

    I think the combination of the French knickers and stockings is very sexy . I would love to see a more wider range of these knickers available in the collections . Love Sheila xx

  • Posted on by David Vincent

    What a super set of lingerie stunning 👍

  • Posted on by Hair 38

    A very informative article , thanks. Interesting to see how the bra she adapted to the fashions of the times . I like the idea of wearing French knickers as a mini slip , could be good with some summer dresses .

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