IMPERIAL War Museums (IWM) is encouraging people across the nation to mark the 75th anniversary of clothes rationing in Second World War Britain.
Households have been invited to celebrate the historic milestone, which was on 1st June, by digging into their family albums or speaking to parents and grandparents to discover what their family wore at the time – and by sharing these photographs and stories on social media using #WhatMyFamilyWore.
Many of the contributions to the initiative will be shown as part of the exhibition experience for Fashion on the Ration: 1940’s Street Style, IWM North’s newly-opened show. The exhibit explores how fashion survived and even flourished under the strict rules of rationing and how, despite the restrictions, austerity did not put an end to creative design or fashionable trends on the British home front.
The designs of the era are still celebrated today, with a growing community of people who wear and make clothes inspired by these wartime trends.
Diane Lees, director general of IWM, said: “#WhatMyFamilyWore is a great way to get people from different generations talking and sharing stories and photographs that show how people had to make do and be creative with what little they had during the Second World War.
“IWM North’s exhibition Fashion on the Ration tells some wonderful stories – underwear made from a silk map, a bridesmaid’s dress made from parachute material and stylish wedge heeled shoes made from scraps picked up from a factory floor. We hope that #WhatMyFamilyWore will bring forward more of these fantastic stories of creativity in times of restrictions.”