“Nostalgic Elegance”: The Enduring Style of the Gibson Girl

Joshua Simon, Michael Mamp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper offers new perspectives on the sartorial style of the Gibson Girl archetype, the ideal of feminine beauty at the turn of the twentieth century, and its reinterpretation and prevalence post-World War II. We explore this nostalgic resurgence of turn-of-the-century style, identify which characteristics defined it, and examine its dissemination across the fashion industry. From the couture designs of Dior and Schiaparelli to sew-at-home patterns like those offered by Butterick, Simplicity, and McCall, the resurgence of the Gibson Girl’s sartorial style influenced fashion and gained further popularity through presentations in film, theater, and retail merchandising.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-77
Number of pages17
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2021


  • Charles Dana Gibson
  • Gibson Girl
  • New Woman
  • fashion
  • nostalgia
  • shirtwaist


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