Why Is the Ophelia Dress So Popular?

As a company who sell vintage clothes online, we are aware that the majority of vintage style dresses we offer are based on styles that were popular in the 1940s; but our most popular style has to be the Ophelia Dress. But, why are 1940s styles so popular, and what makes the ‘Ophelia’ style so universally loved?

Styles from the 1940s are very distinctive, as they tend to create a very feminine silhouette. With wide padded shoulders, nipped-in high waistlines and A-line skirts that finished at the knee, 1940s fashion is all about creating the perfect hour-glass figure. Many women aspire to have an hour-glass figure with broad shoulders, small waists and full hips, as this is seen as the ideal shape to have. Therefore, 1940s clothes, such as the Vintage Ophelia Dress, are popular because they help women to achieve this look.

The Ophelia Dress style is based on the design of a swing dress – which was another hugely popular style in the 1940s. Obviously, dancing is a pastime that is enjoyed by many, but for ladies to really enjoy themselves, they wanted garments that had full skirts and looser arms. Swing dresses were therefore designed to have full skirts which allowed for movement and were great fun to twirl in.


                                            Lindy Bop Midnight Blue Ophelia Vintage Dress - £38

The Ophelia Dress really captures this fun spirit, as it is designed to fit and flatter the curves of a woman in the most elegant way. The sweetheart neckline and figure-hugging bodice draw attention to a lady’s most feminine assets without revealing anything. The slim bodice going into the wide flare skirt is really figure-flattering, and you can accentuate your waist even more by adding a belt. Not many people are aware as well, that the 'Ophelia' dress has a hidden side zip and secret pockets! We love dresses with pockets!

To really enhance the look of the 'Ophelia' dress you should pair it with a vintage petticoat. Petticoats were made popular in the 15th century as underwear, although today we generally like to have them on show! They developed through the 17th century as lace was added to give a more feminine touch. Then in the 18th century they became woollen so that they could add an extra layer of warmth in the winter months. Nowadays, vintage style petticoats are normally worn under swing dresses, like the 'Ophelia', in order to emphasise the fullness of the skirt and give it shape. One other advantage of adding a petticoat, is that it helps to make the waist appear smaller.


                                            Lindy Bop Ophelia Black Vintage Dress - £38

Perhaps one reason why the 'Ophelia' is so popular is the fact that it is available in so many colours and prints. From solid colour topolka dots and even floral designs, there really is something for all tastes. It is such a versatile dress; it looks wonderful at all events, from garden parties to weddings. More often than not it is made from a good quality medium weight stretch cotton fabric, which means that it is not only light to wear, but it can be washed in the washing machine - although the pleats at the bust can be tricky to iron!

Do you love the 'Ophelia Dress'? Why not share your photos with us on Facebook or Twitter so we can see how you style yours?

For more information about the 'Ophelia' dress or our wide range of vintage clothes online, please mail us on care@littlewingsfactory.com or by using our online contact form. 

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