Body image through the decades

A lifetime in fashion & style: body image represented in the Kay & Co catalogues

From the launch of the earliest ‘ready to wear’ clothing range in 1920, to the turn of the century in 2000, Kays’ catalogues reflect how our lifestyles and self-image have changed.

The images demonstrate the growth of leisure time amongst the working classes, the increasing commercialisation of childhood and family life, the influence of ‘street style’ on the high street fashion and the shifting gender roles of the day.

For an introduction to the styles of each decade, click on the hyperlinks on the left.