Utility, CC41, Luxury Label / Double Eleven / Dinner Plate

Utility clothing which went out under the labels of CC41 (1941-52) and Luxury Label (1945-52) were made under strict rules set out by the government.

As retail prices of clothing rose and quality declined the government stepped in and passed a law that clothing manufactures had to follow. RRP's were brought in to maintain an affordable price for all classes. Manufacturers also had to use good quality CC41 regulated fabric, alongside strict rules on the amount of material used, pleats, pockets, even down to the amount of buttons on a garment.

CC41 got such a bad name with the public that the government decided to give the scheme an overhaul and brought in the luxury label, known also as the double eleven or dinner plate label. This allowed Manufactures of clothing to use better fabrics and relaxed the rules slightly on the amount of material, pleats, pockets etc.

How many clothing coupons for a wedding dress?

A wedding dress cost the same amount of coupons as an ordinary dress, which was 7 coupons. With the quickly decreasing amount of clothing coupons year on year as the war went on, choosing between a dress you'd wear once and one you could wear again became a choice most brides couldn't escape. This is also one of the main reason Brides started to choose to get married in two piece suits.

Why do we get married in white?

Queen Victoria made the white wedding dress popular when she married Albert in 1840. Until then blue was the colour to get married in as it represent the purity of the Virgin Mary. 

Cardboard Wedding Cake!

From July 1940 icing on cakes was banned. Cake shops got quickly inventive and made cardboard covers decorated with plaster of paris, to give the effect of icing. You could then hire this to pop over the top of whatever form of a cake you could make out of your rations.

Not everyone got a wedding ring!

With the war effort in full swing and metals needed for bombs etc. wedding rings became scarce. Once the CC41 regulations started to come into force you could go on a waiting list for a CC41 marked wedding ring. However the copper content was very high and would soon send your finger green. Some couples chose to borrow rings of a family member for the wedding ceremony and hand them back after.