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Style Guide for The Cycling Revival

What to wear!

The World Cycling Revival Style Guide

To its patrons, the Great Cycling Revival is an excuse to dress-up to-the-hilt in the vintage inspired fashions and style of the period covered (1920s, 30s & 1940s), so here's our little guide to dressing the part if you fancy popping along and hanging out by the track…

Since amazing prizes could be won for best dressed and being dressed in theme will gain you access to all areas of the event, it is also a great opportunity to enjoy the event even more.

Below are a few ideas to get you started:-

Ideas for 1920s Fans

The era of art deco, the flapper and the boyish look. This decade can be chic and elegant or decadent and full glam. The silhouette in the 1920s was boyish with a drop waist. You can have a lot of fun with the 1920s look!

Hair: was cropped close or in a bob. (a clever up-do can make a faux bob - there are plenty pop tutorials on you-tube)

Makeup: (inspired by the silver screen) was smoky eye and dark lip.

Accessories: cloche hat, long gloves, long pendant necklace, art deco jewellery

Shoes: Mary-Jane or T-bar

Idea 1: 1920s - Gatsby Gone Wild

This look is your opportunity to take opulence to a new level. This is the flapper look - beaded, bejewelled and fringed or sumptuous velvets and chiffons. Jewellery is abundant and headwear often adopted.

Idea 2: 1920s - Coco Chanel Chic

Hailed by Coco Chanel, black became fashionable and so did comfortable, simple drop waist styles. This era saw the start of the ‘Little Black Dress’. This is a really classy look and can combine an elegant drop waist dress with cloche hat and long pearls.

Ideas for 1930s Fans


The 1930s was a well dressed decade. It makes us think of bias cut gowns, tweed suits, flounces and frills. It had many contrasts with the 1920s - the waist has returned and curves are in vogue again. The 1930s, however, also saw the birth of ‘sports casual’ clothing for women when outdoor exercising was encouraged and adopted. Off the peg clothing was gaining pace and despite the economic problems of the decade - fashion was more available and very influenced by the silver screen.

The hair: is still short but more natural and often curled.

Makeup: is simpler than the 1920s but the main focus was a very thin eyebrow and a strong lip.

Accessories: are abundant: faux fur, gloves, scarves and a tilt hat or beret to top of your outfit.

1930s Idea 1:- Trouser Style

If comfort is your thing and you are seeking a trousers style - then this might be the look for you! The new sports casual styles of the 30s often took the form of sailor themes. Very wide trousers with bib fastening, boat neck top or sailor blouse. Pair with a beret

1930s Blouse & Slacks

1930s Idea 2:- Hollywood Glam

In need of a boost and some escapism during the great depression, ladies flocked to the cinemas to see what their favourite stars were wearing. From slinky evening wear is silly satin to practical and stylish tweed or wool suits.

Ideas for 1940s Fans

When we think of 1940s fashion, we probably think of the glamour of the 40s Pin Up and the practical styles of the wartime Land Army Girls. We think of ultra feminine 1940s tea dance dresses in floral prints, wedge shoes and brogues. The fashions were of course, influenced by the war and economic situation and so fashion was practical.

Makeup: subtle winged eyeliner, red lip

Hair: 1940s hair is definitely the iconic element of this era - but can easily look silly if not done right. Avoid victory rolls and try the 40s poodle or pageboy with hair flowers.. check out instruction videos on youtube.

Accessories: seamed stockings/tights, hat or snood, diamanté jewellery

Shoes: brogues or sandals wioth a platform

1940s Idea 1: Home Front Honey

The is a great style for those who seek a practical option - perhaps also very helpful if cycling! Trousers from this period are different to modern styles - choose reproduction high waisted, wide leg trousers which are really flattering and should be paired with a waisted jumper, blouse and jacket. Or opt for a practical shirt waister dress.

1940s Idea 2: Film Noir

Many ladies love the ultimate sophisticated clothing of the 1940s hollywood glamour - whether that be a suit with a faux fur or an elegant floral tea dress. Remember headwear and a bit of bling!

1940s Film Noir Dress
The 1940s Film Noir Style 'Ohara Dress'

Further Reading:-

Vintage Style Guides:

Our Pinterest page on 1920s inspirational styles:

Our Pinterest page on 1930s inspirational styles:

Our Pinterest page on 1940s inspirational fashion:

Recommended books:-

Art Deco Fashion - Suzanne Lussier

Everyday Fashions of the 30s - Sears Catalogue

Forties fashion – From Siren Suits to the New Look – Jonathan Walford

The 40s Look – Mike Brown

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