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For every photograph printed in LIFE Magazine, countless others never made the cut. A set of 5,000 images might be whittled down to 15 in print, and entire assignments were set aside and never revisited. One such assignment was this series of fashion photos from 1941. Any notes, if they existed, have been lost to time, and all that is known is the location (Buenos Aires) and the subjects (models for Saks). But the fashion statements—eye-catching headpieces, expertly tailored outwear and serious brow power—speak for themselves. If today’s designers want to foster a resurgence of early ‘40s sensibilities, they need look no further than LIFE’s cutting room floor.
Liz Ronk, who edited this gallery, is the Photo Editor for LIFE.com. Follow her on Twitter at @LizabethRonk.