Thursday, May 3, 2012

Clara's 1930s Trench Coat

The Nancy Drew series was first published in 1930. My daughter is currently reading as many Nancy Drew books as she can find in the local library. She aspires to own every single Nancy Drew book, but that is not very likely, since there were 175 books published in the original series. I didn't know how many had been written until I looked it up a few minutes ago. She gets to stick with what she can find at used book sales and the library.

This week, Clara gets to wear a 1930s double-breasted coat, the uniform of sleuths in every clich├ęd mystery book and movie. Clara is wearing a similar coat and hat in the black and white illustration from an original copy of The Bungalow Mystery, one of the first three Nancy Drew Books published in 1930. The original cover has Nancy in a very cute blue suit with a stylish yellow scarf. The familiar yellow spines for the Nancy Drew book covers were not created until 1962, when the books were republished. 

After seeing the outfit for today, my daughter has requested some of the outfits from the other Nancy Drew books for Clara. We'll have to see if any of them will work as paper doll fashions.

Although trench coats were created sometime in the mid-1800s, they did not gain much popularity in the general population until after World War I. During the war, soldiers found that trench coats were very important to keeping warm and dry on the battlefield. After the war, designers began to create nicer styles, and women began to wear the double-breasted trench coat. At some point, the trench coat became the symbol of detectives and spies, but probably not as early as 1930, when the original book illustration with Nancy in a trench coat was created.

Clara has a cute double breasted trench coat, worn with a drapy scarf around her neck. She also has a floppy rain hat to match the coat. And finally, she has some galoshes to finish off her rainy-day outfit. Galoshes were pulled on and worn over whatever more fragile shoes were being worn underneath, thus protecting the shoes from mud or water.


Clara is a free, printable paper doll. Clara will be available on this blog as long as I continue to post new fashion pages for her. You can read the introduction for the Clara paper doll here.

To print the Clara paper doll, use this PDF file:

1 comment:

  1. I love Nancy Drew! I read every one in the library, sometimes twice!

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