(Originally blogged October 16, 2009)
I hate being wrong and usually avoid being corrected by rarely stating absolute truths unless I know I can prove it, however I am the first to admit fault when I have found the error of my ways and to that end, I have to offer up some new tidbits of information that change a couple of facts in my books.
When I wrote The Seductive Shoe I stated that the open toe, sling-back shoe was introduced in 1938. I still hold to that date for when that style became popular, however, Bret Fowler, a friend of mine and former Fashion Institute of Technology collections manager, found this advertisement from December 1935 that refers to the introduction of the peep toe shoe. I should have known better, since it usually takes a couple of years for a new style to catch on and become popular.
In my Forties Fashion book I refer to CC41 (the British wartime clothing scheme), as standing for ‘Civilian Clothing 1941.’ This is the common definition found in every book I referenced although sometimes Clothing Control is said to be the definition. However, I never liked either explanation because the scheme was also applied to furniture and domestic textiles. I never found an official period reference that defined what the CC stood for; definitions of the term only show up after the war, in reminiscences, and memory is never a good resource. A snippet, that appeared in several American newspapers in September 1941, was turned up by Lynne Kranieri, a Vintage Fashion Guild member who is also adept at scrounging up newspaper articles from her research. The American press probably got their information for this story from a British source at the time, who defined CC41 as standing for Controlled Commodity – a sensible definition, considering the mark was used on more than just clothes.