Boudoir – a short history

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This post will tell you a bit of the Boudoir History.

The art of Boudoir has been captured in pictures for many years by now, longer than would be thought.

It shortly translates as intimacy in its purest form captured to a sensual suggestive memory in time, without being explicit.

A  Boudoir photographer tries to find the beauty that exists in every woman. As said in its purest form when she feels at her most vulnerable and yet comfortable with her body, life, and soul.

The history of this beautiful profession came to a start in the chambers of past times, when the act of dressing and undressing was still a formal occasion between the lady of the house and her maid. This called for a separate room, away from the bedroom and was called a boudoir.

Although it is recently only begun to come more and more to attention as a valuable genre of the photography scene, it has been around for much longer than that.

The boudoir trend became noted during the 1920s when it was defined as an art form of the photographed scene. Before that time it was illegal to have nudity in photographs, and yet some avant-garde photographers continued to produce masterpieces of boudoir photography, mostly woman, in romantic ways.

Boudoir History - Marie Prevost 1922
Marie Prevost 1922

During the 1940s

Boudoir was mostly portrayed by busty, well-curved woman who had been classed as pin-ups by that time. This was the ghost of that era as skinny girls were considered undesirable. That was the era when props were commonly used during shoots.


Ava Gardner 1940's pin up
Ava Gardner 1940’s pin up

A new era

Another era that is specific for Boudoir history in photography was the 1970s. It was the time that Boudoir was more defined as an art. Also, commonly magazines allow the pictures of real women instead of drawings that were used before. It was then that people got more used to the art and it was more accepted.
Although it is an art form that was more and more accepted and had changed over the years it was still a taboo for many. We can say it was misunderstood and the few that misunderstood thought that this was a form of glorified pornography.


Uschi Obermaier by Jeanloup-Sieff for Vogue Italia, 1972.
Uschi Obermaier by Jeanloup-Sieff for Vogue Italia, 1972.


It is more and more accepted and even so encouraged and celebrated in many circles. This is a sexy new trend that defines women as sensual, to boost their self-esteem and to please themselves as well as to value their body. Luckily this is a trend not yet to fade out and brings us woman the joy of showing off our beautiful bodies.



Data Source: Huffington Post

Photo Source: Photo 1 – The Female Portrait, Photo 2 – Marie Prevost 1922 , Photo 3 – Ava Gardiner 1940 , Photo 4 – Uschi Obermaier


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