by Lesli Larson
A Canterbury Tale (Powell and Pressburger 1944) provides us with evidence that heritage clothing for women is not an impossibility. In a recent post to Valet, a 23 year old woman inquired about how she could wear “peacoats, slim pants, loafers, etc. without looking too boyish? Any brands you would recommend?” In response, Valet offered three suggestions: Boy. Band of Outsiders, Black Fleece and JCREW. Though a good start, we’d prefer to shop from smaller labels like Nigel Cabourn, Mister Freedom, Our Legacy, Opening Ceremony, Gitman Bros. and SNS Herning. Unfortunately, none of these brands offer collections for women (Engineered Garment’s ephemeral FWK line has yet to migrate West). Further, Valet advises “to mix in those boyish pieces with light touches of feminine charm.” If the reader had emailed Archival Clothing, I would have suggested she model her wardrobe after the Land Army Girl, Miss Alison Smith, from A Canterbury Tale. Note Miss Smith’s smart uniform of knee length woolen stockings, wide leather belt, brogues, sweater, plaid scarf and corduroy breeches.