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Recognise this label?

Discussion in 'PUBLIC Vintage Fashion - Ask Questions Get Answers' started by catwalkcreative, Oct 11, 2009.

  1. Found this label and wonder if anyone recognises it. Could it be an early form of care label or denote the fabric content? Two black circles with cut out sections and the digit 4 with a vertical line placed next to it. Any suggestions? :)

  2. amandainvermont

    amandainvermont VFG Member

  3. fuzzylizzie

    fuzzylizzie Alumni


    The CC41, or Utility, label was used in Great Britain as a result of wartime shortages in WWII and the period immediately following. Rationing of clothing went into effect in June, 1941, and strict manufacturing standards were drawn up limiting the amount of fabric, fasteners and trims that could be used in each garment. This ruling was called Civilian Clothing 1941, or CC41.
    The British Board of Trade enlisted the help of many of the country's top designers, including Hardy Amies, Molyneux and Norman Hartnell to design samples that fit within the strict measures. These styles were then adapted for the mass market.

    CC41 labeling continued until 1952, when rationing was finally ended.
  4. It's the CC41 label, Louise. There are copies in the resource. I'm not sure of the difference between CC41 and the posh utility (two solid bars, circle, two solid bars), but there has been much discussion in the past about these labels. If memory serves me, both were started during WWII and had to do with material restrictions on clothing.

    Hopefully, Jonathan will drop in.
  5. Or Lizzie!

    There you have it!
  6. Lizzie can that info be entered on the resource?
  7. That's great! Thanks very much for the fabulous information. I wasn't sure where to look in the label resource for this. :USETHUMBUP:
  8. Just found some additional notes on this. :) It's one I won't forget. :headbang:
  9. fuzzylizzie

    fuzzylizzie Alumni

    I actually copied that from what I had written for the resource.

    Those labels are under "Utility" and "CC41" but the C's look more like pacman, so maybe I ought to put it under P.:D
  10. Lizzie, there's also CC41 under "C", but the above info is not there.
  11. TinTrunk

    TinTrunk Registered Guest

    I think they were known in their day as the cheeses or cakes!

    I'd also like to know more about the 'posh' Utility mark (the 'dinner plate'?) So far I've failed to find out anything about it at all, except that it was on higher value garments and was possibly a means to allow rich people to buy their better quality items. A bit of a cheat, in other words ;)

    Edit: (I've just discovered I can edit!) A search on the forum revealed lots of threads about these labels, so sorry for not doing a search first before blundering in! :duh2:
  12. Jonathan

    Jonathan VFG Member

    The CC stood or 'Controlled Commodity', unfortunately, you won't read that in my book because I only discovered that after the fact. At the time people thought it looked like two cheeses (wheels of cheese with wedges cut out.) The 41 is for the year of the program, but it didn't go into effect until April 1942. CC41 was actually a quality guarantee because rationing limited the number of garments someone could buy, CC41 guaranteed the best quality available for those manufactured goods. CC41 limited the number of choices of materials, colours, and also used all the austerity restrictions which applied to all clothing, whether made under the CC41 guidelines or not. There were also benefits for manufacturers to produce clothing following CC41 guidelines because your workers were not pressed into wartime service if you produced a percentage of CC41 clothing.

    The proper name for the dinnerplate label is Double Elevens. Its use is still a bit of a mystery but it's related to the CC41 program but was used only after the war. Like council housing, CC41 became associated with dull, detailess, government-controlled clothing. After the war the popularity of CC41 plummeted because everyone was sick or wartime deprivation. I suspect Double Elevens was brought about to replace CC41 in about 1947. It tends to appear on better quality clothing, but that has more to do with it being post war than anything else. There are speculations that it had something to do with export clothing, which i don't believe because 95% of the clothes I have seen with the Double Elevens label comes from England, or came from England with an English war bride.

    There hasn't been any definitive document found on this label just yet, but it does seem to appear on clothes made between 1947 and 1952.
  13. Thanks Jonathan. :)
  14. TinTrunk

    TinTrunk Registered Guest

    I agree that after the war, and the extended period of rationing (that must have been a nightmare since it actually got worse) the CC41 products must have acquired a dreary and drab reputation by association with the deprivation people had to suffer.

    But most of the CC41 items I've seen aren't that bad at all - in fact many of them are pretty appealing, to modern eyes at least!

    I'm reading a great book about the immediate post-war years in Britain right now, entirely composed of diaries written by Mass Observation volunteers, and it gives such a fantastic picture of the trials and tribulations of 'ordinary' people coping with rationing and getting increasingly fed up with it all! - 'Our Hidden Lives' edited by Simon Garfield.
  15. joules

    joules VFG Member

    Louise, could we possibly see the associated garment, if time allows?
  16. I too would like to see the item.
    This is very fasinating as I have never seen any of these labels etc. because of being in the US.
    I am going to copy out the info for my own history information.
  17. amandainvermont

    amandainvermont VFG Member

    Yes Louise - since I made the silly Pac Man comment and then learned so much - you must (!!) share a photo of the garment ... please.
  18. Yikes! So sorry! I logged off the forums yesterday and didn't see this request. It's a 1940's slip which is either made from silk-satin or rayon. I'm just not sure at all and there's not enough fabric in the seams to to a test. I'm thinking more on the side of rayon now, since this has the CC41 label inside. It's sewn into the top part of the side seam and I just missed it completely first time around. :duh:

    I've got it in my Etsy store right now but I'm wondering if I've priced it too low at $70 USD. :clueless: Any suggestions or have I got it about right? It's not bias-cut.


  19. Coral

    Coral Registered Guest

    Hi Louise,

    This is a lovely slip - great find! I have seen the CC41 dresses fetch between £40.00 - £80.00 on ebay. I have a floral dress / apron with this label, it also has some red on it - I will post it later. These are very rare now, I have only ever come across one other on my travels, when I first started doing vintage earlier in the year on a lovey red wool dress - the label on that dress was exactly the same as the one on your slip.

    From time to time there are also under garments on e-bay, so this may help you to set the price accordingly.

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