In Vintage Inspiration

1945 Summer Handbags


I really enjoy browsing old 1940’s mail order catalogs in my free time, especially the wartime ones from Sears & Roebuck. I’ve been building a small collection of these types of catalogs because I’m utterly fascinated by what the average American woman was shopping for back then. It always surprises me when I see designs that look so modern and trendy, even though they’re 70+ years old. Could you ever picture a “flexible cubed plastic” clutch in the 40’s? Now you can!


These kinds of photos are also really invaluable for me as a WWII reenactor because all the information I need for finding an authentic looking reproduction is listed in the description. Color, fabric content, size, it’s all right there for me to cross check. Too bad I can’t call Sears & Roebuck right now and order that hand embroidered straw clutch for $2.29!

Do you ever browse old catalogs for fun? Which of these bags would you order?