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Certainly the fabrics one uses in crafting costumes are very dignificant in creating an authentic look and feel. In the 1940s, very classic fabrics were used in women's fashions, partly because the times after war are often austere, but also because there were genuine shortages of many resources. Even so, synthetics were not yet in widespread use. Fabrics produced in the US (as opposed to European or Asian sources) would have been more from natural fibers that were easily available. Women wore suits and dresses from sturdy, practical but beautiful fabrics, like wool gabardine, wool challis, and cotton broadcloth. For lighter weight clothing and summer, lighter weaves of cotton (such as lawn or madras) were used in blouses, skirts and shorts. French designer Coco Chanel's designs became very famous and inspirational during the 1940s, inspiring a "menswear" look in women's fashions, and Hollywood personalities like Joan Crawford also established trends in fashion. Chanels clothing also utilized classic fabric choices, including popular French fabrics such as silk crepe de chine and jersey knits.
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