31st December 2022

Victory Suits: Part 2

Australian clothing restrictions were announced on Sunday 26th July, 1942. It was claimed that the same amount of cloth previously used to cut out 100,000 men’s suits would now be enough for 112,000 suits! There would also be a saving per suit of 12.5 yards of sewing thread and four buttons, as well as in the time taken for sewing.

Daily Advertiser (Wagga Wagga, NSW), 27th July 1942 page 4.

The Courier-Mail (Brisbane), 27th July 1942 page 1.

Whilst most were prepared to “grin and bear it”, and some pointed to the savings in money and coupons (30 instead of 38 coupons), not everybody was happy …

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney), 27th July 1942 page 5.

The chief criticism of the men’s suit was the lack of a waistcoat. By December that year, Mr Dedman had relented (perhaps it wasn’t going to make a big difference anyway?) and allowed its return. In October a ‘short-shirt’ was introduced.

Pix magazine, 2nd January 1943 page 22.

In the UK, prohibition on extra buttons, pockets, etc were lifted in February 1944, although coupons remained. Clothing rationing, and the Victory suit, ended in Australia on June  23rd, 1948.

To watch a video of Mr Dedman talking the new suit in 1942, see:


Australian War Memorial: Victory suit jacket.

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