A 1920s Island Escapade

I’m terribly delayed in writing about a lovely event I attended last summer… Gatsby On The Isles was a 1920s weekend getaway to a coastal island, including a ferry ride, picnic, clambering on the rocks and in the water, lawn games, dancing, card games, and napping in rocking chairs on the large porch of the grand hotel. A fabulous live jazz band played great music throughout the weekend. It was very much like having a soundtrack to my own personal movie!

It was quite hot last August, so the strong breeze on the ferry and some parts of the island was quite welcome, as was wading and hiding under my parasol. (Had I not had a sturdy grip, my parasol would surely have been blown away during these pictures.)

I wore my 1930s beach ensemble for travel to the island and the afternoon picnic. I am always pleased with how the (polyester, ahem) pants don’t wrinkle, even with heat and sweat and sitting, and how gloriously cool and comfortable I am while wearing it.

Partway through the afternoon I changed into my 1925 bathing suit in order to go wading. Again, a very comfortable and fun item of clothing! I can now report that wearing a wool bathing suit in the heat is no different than wearing a modern suit. I certainly wasn’t any warmer than I would have been in a more modern style.

Getting to the water at this part of the island required some clambering over rocks, but also made a great backdrop for pictures!

Dinner was a casual affair, for which I changed into my 1926 sailor dress. An unplanned wardrobe similarity required picture documentation.

For the evening dance, I changed into my 1924 Golden Robe de Style. The parlor of the hotel had some fabulous couches that called for lounging and sultry faces. Despite being hot, it was fun to dance the night away to wonderful music, with breaks to sit out on the porch with a 1920s cocktail.

The next day was low-key. I explored the island, played cribbage, and took an unexpected nap in a rocking chair on the porch. I decided to be slightly old fashioned and wore my 1919 Ivory Eyelet Dress, another comfortable summer ensemble, with my 1920s Sinamay Hat.

I tried a forward thinking 1930s inspired hairstyle for the weekend. I did it early Saturday morning before hitting the road and then wore it all weekend without a change. It went from day to evening with no problem and stayed in place through wind, hats, and sleeping. (This is the same hairstyle I hinted about in the post about my 1927 Blush Sparkle Dress.)

In order to keep the frizz down, I did my hair while it was still wet, using Tigi Small Talk as setting lotion to help the waves and curls stay in place. The front and crown were shaped with wave clips while the rest of my hair was massed lower on my head in tight curls. There were TONS of bobby pins hidden in there and it was very secure. I was very pleased with the security of the style and with how well it lasted without frizzing!

It was a very fun escape to the past and I’m so pleased to have great pictures to document it all. What a different scene and temperature than these last four or five months of winter!

8 thoughts on “A 1920s Island Escapade

  1. Thank you, Quinn, for all the great pictures and commentary. I don’t get as much sewing done as I would like, so I live somewhat vicariously through you. I hope to meet you some day and drool over your outfits in person.

  2. Hi Quin. I want to make a 1920’s bathing suit BUT I need full coverage due to extreme sun sensitivity. Do you have any advice for me? Miss Frankie

    1. Have you looked into suits closer to the 1910s styles? They have a lot more fabric to them–longer sleeves and longer bottoms–and would certainly cover up more skin. Plus, earlier in the 1910s and 1920s, wearing stockings with your suit was standard, so your legs would be covered, too.

  3. Seriously? Finger waves? You are so awesome! I was going to say that your blue sailor dress was my favorite then I saw your white dress! I think that is my favorite! What a fabulous escapade and you as always were impeccably dressed!!!

    1. Haha, yes. Of course it makes sense to get up extra early before a long drive to do intense hair… at least it all stayed in place for the whole weekend! Worth the time! 🙂

      And of course you liked the sailor dress! 😉 Thank you!

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