Saturday, February 23, 2013

Secantially Related: Holy Carp Guys, Clothes are Cheap

          During WWII, there was extensive rationing of consumer goods throughout the world. Ali and Susannah wrote wonderful, insightful posts on the subject of clothing rationing, but all I have to say is that the prices are incomprehensible. In modern U.S. dollars, prices considered low for thrifted clothing were:

Common garments, price ($) threshold for second-hand 
Winter coat 45
Jacket, blazer, short coat 20
Dress, wool 41
Dress, non-wool 26
Cardigan 20
Blouses, tees 15
Skirt 15
Slacks 19
Shorts 11
Pair of boots, shoes 15

        I live in an extremely expensive neighborhood in an extremely expensive city, and would expect to pay no more than half as much as listed. I still consider this to be expensive and shop the half-off sales (whatever been there longest that week, and half off everything on every federal holiday).

        Because I'm a sack of nuts, I'm going to do the Fashion on the Ration challenge with 36 coupons, reflecting the height of rationing. Because Scandanavian girls wear their shoes until they fall off (you try finding cute shoes in 10W!), I can't usually thrift any in my size. That's probably 20 coupons a year, leaving me with 16 to replace my stockings collection. At 3 each, that's 5 pairs, which is doable with a lot of darning.


  1. Like you I've seen those figures before - it's amazing to compare them to what we'd expect to pay now. Good luck with your challenge :)