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Fashion and Beauty

Fania Mindell

After co-founding America’s first birth control clinic with Margaret Sanger in 1916, Fania Mindell was arrested and convicted of breaking the Comstock Act for her efforts to make birth control available to women.

Nettie Rosenstein

Nettie Rosenstein created tailored looks that fit a variety of body types and brought ready-to-wear fashion like the little black dress to American consumers.

Sophie Sonia Rosenberg

Undaunted by the challenges of running a business during the worst years of the Depression, Sophie Sonia Rosenberg made a name for herself as the owner of Sonia Gowns, an elegant dress company.

Loren Galler-Rabinowitz

A champion in two very different fields, Loren Galler-Rabinowitz took home the bronze medal for ice dancing in 2004, then competed in the 2011 Miss America Pageant as Miss Massachusetts.

Lucie Porges

Lucie Porges brought a combination of elegance and a relaxed sensibility to her long and fruitful collaboration with top fashion designer Pauline Trigère.

Mollie Parnis

Mollie Parnis was equally famed for her New York salons that welcomed literary and political giants and for her fashion designs that adorned first ladies.

Carrie Marcus Neiman

A born saleswoman, Carrie Marcus Neiman made her family’s department stores synonymous with high-end retail fashion.

Dress to Impress Yourself

I set the water on my stove to boil and flicked on the kitchen radio, which was, as usual, set to NPR. The announcer was giving an update on the ebola crisis, now listing fatalities from a recent accident, now discussing the stock market—I changed the channel. I’d had a long enough day already and had no desire to sit and listen to the ongoing string of bad news. I flipped through channels until I hit a pop station that wasn’t in the middle of a commercial break. As I pulled out plates and pasta sauce, a new song played in the background.

Fashion, Feminism, and A Winter Formal

In my hometown, December means more than just early evenings and the optimism  of an impending winter break. It takes on significance beyond any of the holidays, concerts or changes in the weather. Instead, December means Cotillion, the prom-like event that has groups of high school students talking endlessly of dresses and limousines, pre-parties and after-parties, and definitely not the etiquette that the dance is supposed to teach. 

Corset On, Corset Off

For most of my life, my fashion sense has been dictated more by what I don’t want to wear than what I do want to wear. Socks with seams? Nope. Tight jeans? No way. Itchy sweaters? Out of the question! I feel almost nothing towards clothes, and when I do feel anything, it is usually frustration at tedious trips to the mall and or the seamstress shop. Sure, I enjoy looking “good.” But I have never really had any idea what “good” actually means.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Fashion and Beauty." (Viewed on March 31, 2015) <http://jwa.org/topics/fashion-and-beauty>.

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