The recent revival of the Great Gatsby has brought the love of all things Jazz Age to the forefront of pop culture. In light of the spotlight on the 1920s, we wanted to celebrate one of the best known actresses of the era, Miss Clara Bow. With her bubbly personality and shock of henna-red hair, she personified the Roaring 20s and defined the flapper.
Beloved for her plucky on-screen persona, Clara Bow was the original flapper. She achieved world wide recognition as a sex symbol for the Jazz Age and was known as the “It Girl.”
Throughout the Roaring 20s, Clara defined the modern woman. She drank openly, wore makeup, and bobbed her hair. Her free-spirited personality and bohemian lifestyle left her an outcast in Hollywood, but a favorite subject of the early tabloids such as the Coast Reporter. The paper accused Clara of exhibitionism, drug addiction, and being an alcoholic. The publisher later used these rumors to blackmail Clara which led to his arrest by federal agents.
Clara was the biggest star of her day and appeared in forty-six silent films and eleven talkies before retiring in the early 1930s at only twenty-six years old. Shortly after her retirement, she began showing symptoms of psychiatric illness and was later diagnosed as a schizophrenic. While her career lasted only about ten years, she left her mark forever on Hollywood and was a key influence on future actresses such as Jean Harlow and Marilyn Monroe and was the main inspiration behind the cartoon character Betty Boop.
Let’s Charleston and sip a Gin Rickie in honor of this pinnacle of 1920s attitude and style!
Looking for some truly stunning Clara Bow-inspired style? Take a peak at our flapper section for some gorgeous Gatsby era glamor!