Few eras are so clearly associated with fashion as the Jazz Age. Clean, slim lines; elegance grounded in simplicity rather than ornament; and styles designed for the active lives of the men and women who wore them—nearly a century later, the styles of the era still thrill us.

This book, accompanying an exhibition at the Fashion and Textile Museum, London, both celebrates Jazz Age fashion and helps us understand its context. While presenting beautiful images of classic works by such designers as Chanel, Patou, Lucile, Lanvin, Vionnet, Hartnell, and Molynuex, worn by stars and stunners like Clara Bow and Louise Brooks, it also shows us how the era’s fashion developed. Martin Pel traces the effects of the end of World War I, the rise of America, rapid changes in the lives and expectations of women, and technological breakthroughs like the introduction of Rayon and zippers. All played a part in the creation of an aesthetic that couldn’t have been farther from the buttoned-down, bustled-up clothing of the preceding generation.

?A testament to an era that marked the birth of the modern, and whose influence is still felt today, Jazz Age Fashion is an unforgettable document of an unforgettable age.