What is a Feed Sack Fashion Show?

During the Great Depression, women began using the fabric sacks certain foods, like flour, came in to make clothes for themselves and their families. Times were tough and perfectly good fabric wasn’t going to be wasted. Companies got wind of this and began packing flour and livestock feed in sacks made of patterned fabric.

1

This isn’t about flour sack dresses, though…well, not really. This is about a Feed Sack Fashion Show held in Raleigh, NC in 1948, when the war was over and America’s economy was on the upswing. Were feed sack dresses a necessity in 1948? Probably not. But nevertheless, the Farmers Exchange Cooperative and North Carolina Cotton Growers Cooperative Association held a “Fashion Parade” at the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium.

1,500 women from across North Carolina came to show off their creations, 3,400 people came to watch the show, and no dress cost over $1 in materials. Pretty dang impressive.

5

The winners: fourth place on the left to first place on the right. Mrs. Albert Eagles of Macclesfield took first place and a prize of $100!

Great job, ladies!

Photos via State Archives of North Carolina.