Amanda Mason
Friday 22 June 2018

During the Second World War, people found ways to show their support for the war effort through fashion. Clothing featuring patriotic designs allowed civilians to 'do their bit' for the war effort without compromising on style.

The London-based textile and fashion company Jacqmar was the most notable creator of scarves featuring popular wartime motifs and patriotic messages. These striking prints capture aspects of life on the home front and in the armed forces.

The scarves were expensive and, when bought in Britain, also required two clothing coupons each. They were produced in silk, rayon or wool.

Souvenirs and ephemera

Salvage Your Rubber

Souvenirs and ephemera

Salvage Your Rubber

This scarf draws upon the theme of salvage, as people were encouraged to recycle materials for war production. The central illustrations show some of the items that could be reused for the war effort such as metal, rubber and paper.

Souvenirs and ephemera

Happy Landings

Souvenirs and ephemera

Happy Landings

This scarf's simple design features the RAF crest together with Winston Churchill's famous tribute to the RAF during the Battle of Britain: 'Never was so much owed by so many to so few'.

Souvenirs and ephemera

American Forces in London

Souvenirs and ephemera

American Forces in London

This scarf features many of London's historic sites, 'Bits of Blitz' and the American Embassy. It was designed to appeal specifically to American servicemen who might buy one for their British girlfriends or to send back home as a souvenir.

Souvenirs and ephemera

Switch Off That Light

Souvenirs and ephemera

Switch Off That Light

This home front themed design features just some of the many messages and instructions aimed at the British public during the Second World War.

Souvenirs and ephemera

Free French

Souvenirs and ephemera

Free French

This repeated pattern features Free French flags and badges in support of the forces that continued to fight Germany following the fall of France. The text shown is a famous speech made by Free French leader General De Gaulle after the fall of France in June 1940.

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