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Fashion on the Ration


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A social history to be seen with: bestselling author of Jambusters (filmed as Home Fires) lifts the veil on wartime fashion.

About the Author

Julie Summers is the author of Jambusters: the story of the Women's Institute in the Second World War, which inspired ITV's 2015 hugely successful drama Home Fires, now into a second series. She also wrote When the Children Came Home and Stranger in the House, among others. Fashion on the Ration was a major Imperial War Exhibition in 2015. She lives in Oxford.


I would not have thought a book could make me nostalgic for rationing, but Julie Summers has managed it. A marvellous read. -- Julian Fellowes
Stirring tales of how women beautified on a budget during the Second World War * Mail on Sunday You Magazine *
A charming read ... and a rebuttal of the notion that fashion is a sideshow to the real business of life; a women only zone. -- Anna Murphy * Times *
A fantastic book * Independent *
A well-researched history * Saga *
Anyone tempted to look back in envy for life as portrayed in such sepia-tinted soaps as Foyle's War should read Fashion On The Ration ... every page makes one increasingly grateful for modern comforts, and clothes in particular. Few histories capture so simply yet vividly the monotony and grind of ordinary life for the British at home, when patriotism and fear were leavened, daily, by the increasingly irritating restrictions on what people could wear ... a riveting social history of the kind that looks narrow, yet encompasses every individual - infants as well as the elderly - who had to endure these years ... Fashion may look like a trivial subject but, as Summers shows, it goes to the heart of people's confidence and mood. Given the sartorial hardship Britain was obliged to endure, our enduring chuzpah - and victory - seem all the more remarkable -- Rosemary Goring * Herald *
A fascinating roadmap for all lovers of fashion -- Jo Elvin * Glamour *
[Full of] glorious details ... This book is a testament to the courage shown on the home front in a war where every button mattered. It is also a reproof to those of us with bulging wardrobes who complain that we don't have a thing to wear -- Daisy Goodwin * Mail on Sunday *
Wonderful ... Summers handles her source material confidently and colourfully -- Louise Carpenter * Daily Telegraph *

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