Saturday, January 31, 2009

gimbel's fashion catalog, 1915

I found this gem about two years ago on I've always wanted a fashion catalog from the Edwardian Era, and I think I'm going to continue looking for more. It is so fun to read and use as research for my writing.

I'll show you a few of my favorite pages. I've searched all over the place to find out about the inflation rate and how it compares today. I read on a discussion board that a dollar today was like 5 cents in 1915. It was on a discussion board, though, so I'm taking it with a grain of salt... Here are some interesting prices:

$7.95, $15.00, $15.00, $10.75
The prices for the cover picture (shown above) from left to right

"Boys' Cool Wash Suits for Vacation Days"
"Intermediate and Junior Girls' Dainty Dresses"
"Bath Robes and Charming Negligees"
$1.50-10.00 (a full dress)
"Cleverly-Planned Maternity Wear"
"Wonderful Blouses of Silk and Lace"

"America Combines Empire and Victorian Modes" (my favorites)...

(Left to Right)
15.00, Beautiful Combination Dress (My Favorite)
Made of "soft, clinging chiffon-stripped, corduroy, and fine voile... Finished with Persian silk belt." Shades of rose or Copenhagen.
$15.00, Dancing Dress(MY VERY FAVORITE)
Chiffon sleeves with Empire waist with corded shirring and enriched by a rose corsage. Shades of orchid pink, blue, or Nile green.
$13.75, Afternoon Dress
Made of taffeta and sheer voile (?). Shades of new brown, rose, or Copenhagen.
$10.00, Dancing Dress
Made of chiffon and satin. Shades of light blue, maize, pink, or Nile green.

I loved some of the titles of the pages:
"For Carriage, Auto or Seashore Wear, a Coat is Indispensable"
"Floral Mounts--The Queen of Summer Millinery Trimmings"
"Have you a Penchant for Your Particular Birthstone?"
"Modest Prices and Much Merit are a Gimbel Combination"
"This is an Interesting Page as to Goods and Values"

There you have it. If any one else wants to me to post more from this catalog, especially pictures, let me know.


  1. This was an interesting post as to goods and values.

  2. cool! you were born in the wrong era. :)

  3. oops... the above comment is from me but I accidentally posted as Jonathan. haha...