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L'Officiel de la Couture et de la Mode
November 14, 2008 3:44 PM   Subscribe

A complete archive of French magazine L'Officiel de la Mode, from 1921 to 2008. It's a treasure trove for fans of fashion, photography, advertising and design.

Via On Shadow (possibly NSFW), which I found via Things.
posted by jack_mo (16 comments total) 30 users marked this as a favorite

 
mille fois merci!
posted by Busithoth at 3:50 PM on November 14, 2008


Incroyable!
posted by Faze at 3:51 PM on November 14, 2008


Not nearly as delicious as L'Officiel à la Mode.
posted by buriednexttoyou at 3:53 PM on November 14, 2008


oof, what a feast. Thanks jack_mo.
posted by nickyskye at 4:04 PM on November 14, 2008


PS, even though I think MetaFilter has moved beyond "best of the web" into a more encompassing galaxy, as cyberspace has exponentially improved in the last few years, this website is definitely best of the web awesomeness. A wonderful find.
posted by nickyskye at 4:08 PM on November 14, 2008


Someone tell lileks...
posted by andihazelwood at 6:21 PM on November 14, 2008


Oh man, these are great. Thank you! I wish there was some way to view the images in a larger size, rather than having to squint to see some of the details in the drawings/photos. What a great resource though.

(Oh, 1920s fashion. I love you, but you do not love my hip to waist ratio. :( )

(Also, and this is just me picking a year at random, but it looks like 1943 was the year of the ridiculous hat)
posted by kosher_jenny at 7:30 PM on November 14, 2008


The full-screen viewer thing ("plein ecran") is pretty neat.
posted by gac at 7:30 PM on November 14, 2008


gac, I had just figured that out and came back to add a correction re: my stupidity. Man, I can see that this site is just going to eat up the rest of my evening.
posted by kosher_jenny at 7:46 PM on November 14, 2008


I just spent several hours in the 20s, and barely scratched the surface.

Is there a similar archive of men's fashion from the early 20th C?
posted by robcorr at 8:09 PM on November 14, 2008


i own this one
posted by lapolla at 12:59 AM on November 15, 2008


There goes my weekend. Merci!
posted by Thorzdad at 5:12 AM on November 15, 2008


This brings back memories of first encountering L'Officiel as a teenager. I realized this was different from the usual fashion magazines because of the ads - there were glossy ads for fabric manufacturers and other enterprises involved in the manufacture of the clothes showcased in the fashion spreads. This illustrated to me how those fantastic fashions were the result of a process, involving factories, seamstresses, purveyors of fabrics and feathers and buttons. It changed the way I looked at other fashion magazines, by making me cognizant of how much behind-the-scenes work went on to finally yield that photo in the latest issue of Vogue of the glamorous model in a couture dress.
posted by needled at 5:44 AM on November 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


Very impressive. Just from the covers, it looks to me like the magazine reached its peak in the 1930s, wild and exuberant; by the late '40s it had settled into a boring, official-looking style that it has kept since. Mind you, I know nothing about fashion and have no idea what's inside the magazine. In any event, a great find and a great post!
posted by languagehat at 6:25 AM on November 15, 2008


languagehat wrote: Very impressive. Just from the covers, it looks to me like the magazine reached its peak in the 1930s, wild and exuberant; by the late '40s it had settled into a boring, official-looking style that it has kept since. Mind you, I know nothing about fashion and have no idea what's inside the magazine. In any event, a great find and a great post!

To be honest, I didn't even get past the 1930s before rushing giddily to post the site here! Wild is the word for those covers and layouts.

Is there a similar archive of men's fashion from the early 20th C?

I'm no expert, but I doubt there were equivalent magazines for menswear then (not that there are today - Arena Homme Plus is the only one I can think of off the top of my head). The closest you'd get would be the Fairchild Encyclopedia of Menswear, or books like Men and Menswear: Sartorial Consumption in Britain, 1880-1936 and Man Appeal: Advertising, Modernism and Menswear

nickyskye wrote: ...this website is definitely best of the web awesomeness.

Yeah, it's defo the kind of site that makes you grateful for the web. Strange to think that just a few years ago the only way to see this would've involved a trip to France and weeks trawling through the publisher's archive, assuming they'd even let you in the building.
posted by jack_mo at 8:02 AM on November 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's a find. As if I didn't have enough to do at the moment! But as a francophile living in France, I need to give this some serious reading time...
posted by snowmonkey at 10:24 AM on November 15, 2008


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