Dolores's interest in fashion history dates from her teenage years when vintage apparel was widely available in thrift stores. The late Victorian era was a time of great prosperity. Technical advances created the birth of the large corporation and unfettered capitalism. It was a time of optimism and opportunity, conspicuous consumption, and corruption. Industrialization brought people to cities, and urban areas grew. Railroads increased ease and availability of travel and the ability to move products long distances quickly.
Top coats ended at the hips. Several styles of coats were popular.
Until the s, men slept in a nightshirt, a long loose fitting dress like garment that could reach to the knees or longer. They could be gathered at the neck with a drawstring or feature a neat collar. A nightcap was worn in cold weather. By the end of the century, pajamas came into vogue. Called a sleeping suit, or pyjamas in the UK, pj's came in silk or wool and in colors and stripes. Men also wore robes.
During the late Victorian era, men's undergarments were made in factories and available at department stores or men's clothiers. High waisted drawers could be knee or ankle length.
Men's Suits and Separates. What style suits you? Add a noticeable sharpness to your wardrobe with the tailored look of suits and suit separates. Whether you're heading to a fancy soiree or stocking up on office-ready outfits, create a polished pizzazz with the variety of designs available. Search Dating Ancestor Photos Through Clothing and Hairstyles Your link to the past since February ! Search for your ancestors in free Ships' Passenger lists, Naturalization Records, Palatine Genealogy, Canadian Genealogy, American Genealogy, Native American Genealogy, Huguenots, Mennonites, Almshouse Records, Orphan Records, church records. Best suits: single vs double-breasted suits. Perhaps one of the biggest decisions to make when choosing a suit is whether to go with a single-breasted or double-breasted cut.
They featured an access hatch or drop seat in back and a fly front fastened with buttons. A vest or undershirt was square cut and plain, hanging below the waist.
Drawers and vests were made of flannel or wool. Combinations or union suits, similar to jump suits or one piece garments were also worn. In England, men wore drawers for swimming. Women bathed at separate locations so going shirtless did not offend.
One piece, short-legged tank suits were popular in the USA where both genders bathed in the same areas. Separates included knee-length breeches and a short-sleeved or sleeveless shirt. Swim wear was made of jersey, a wool knit. Working class men wore ready made garments constructed of inexpensive fabrics like cotton, wool, denim, or corduroy. Corduroy is a warm, ribbed fabric that is both soft and durable and was used in making trousers, vests, and jackets.
The History of the Suit by Decade
Laborers and factory workers all wore a vest over their shirts. Of course, lower class men could not afford or have reason to make all the daily clothing changes of the elite. Most lower class men owned a sack jacket and good trousers for special occasions. This Sunday best lasted a lifetime. Sweaters, often worn by fishermen and rural people of cold climates were hand knit.
Some fishing families or regions made sweaters with distinctive colors or patterns. Wool sweaters are great insulators as wool keeps the body warm even if it becomes wet. Victorian fishermen, as well as their wives and daughters, knit. Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.
Hi Mike - I can't imagine wearing Victorian clothing period. The women's clothes were the worst - so beautiful yet so uncomfortable. My mother used to say "beauty must suffer" when we had to wear uncomfortable clothing. Sounds like a concept left over from those days.
It's entertaining to learn how something we might consider insignificant was so important in distinguishing social class or stratum - such as facial hair. Full beards that were once "in" became a symbol of a "viral outdoor kind of guy.
Their valets or menservants must have been quite busy! This was an interesting read. Excellent article. I learned a lot about Victorian Era clothing. I once tried on a stovepipe hat and can't imagine wearing one. It was heavy and in its time, something common at high dress events.
Enjoyed reading this. Hi ptosis - me too! I could go crazy with images but don't want to overload the article. Hi Flourish - in those days, people did not worry so much about their own stink.
Washing oneself then dousing with scented products was common practice. Body odor was not discussed in public. Remember, people smelled bad from day one. One early deodorant was called Mum and was trademarked in An antiperspirant called Everyday was invented in The public was not interested and claimed products stained clothing. Some of the deodorants had an unpleasant smell to begin with.
It would take years of marketing to convince people to use such products. As far as wearing the same shirt for days at a time - doing laundry was a difficult chore that took a lot of time and effort. Though washing machines were introduced in it took time for the use of the product to spread. The first electric washing machine called the Thor was patented in Bynearly one million units were sold in the USA.
Sales fell during the Great Depression. World War II set back general use as materials were needed for the war effort.
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I would've have like to see more examples of the different overcoats and hats. Nice hub. This was very entertaining and I found myself imagining how those men must have smelled after wearing the one shirt for several days or having gotten that wool sweater wet.
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To provide a better website experience, bellatory. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so. Dolores Monet more. Background The late Victorian era was a time of great prosperity. Men's Fashion Overview To modern eyes, there was little change in men's styles over the years of the late Victorian era.
Hair Most men of the era wore their hair short. Muttonchops were exaggerated sideburns. Side whiskers were muttonchops taken to an extreme. They hung well below the jawline. A goatee featured hair on the chin but not the cheeks. Van Dykes were hair on the chin paired with a moustache with no hair on the cheeks.
The Walrus moustache grew down past the outer edge of the mouth, sometimes to the jawline. A handlebar moustache extended outwards and could be turned upwards at the ends, the hair held in place by wax. By the end of the century, most men were clean shaven.
Dating mens suits
Click thumbnail to view full-size. Jackets or Coats Worn as part of a suit, jackets varied over time as well as time of day and occasion. Coats Frock Coats had been worn for formal day wear or professional attire since the early Victorian era. Jackets Sack jackets or lounge coats were what we think of when we picture a modern man's suit jacket.
Waistcoat or Vest Waistcoats or vests were simple, sleeveless garments with deep or shallow necks, buttoned down the front. While waistcoats featured lapels, those worn for formal occasions had no lapels. Trousers Trousers did not change much after the mid s. Knickerbockersworn for outdoor activities like hunting, biking, shooting, hiking, and golf ended at the knee and were worn with knee high socks and sturdy shoes or high boots. Jodpursworn for equestrian activities and sports fit tight at the knee and puffed out at the thighs.
These were often worn with a jacket that flared at the hips. Hats The iconic top hat was worn for both day and evening formal occasions. Shirts and Ties White shirts worn for formal and professional day wear featured stuff, starched shirt fronts. Overcoats Overcoats were worn full or ankle length or could be calf length. The Chesterfiel a herringbone tweed coat, featured a velvet collar. Tweed Ulster coats were worn loose or belted with a detachable hood or cape.
The cape fell to the elbow. A Mackintosh was a waterproof all weather coat. Wool cloth was coated on one side with dissolved rubber with another layer of wool on top. The Inverness originated as a sleeved coat with a long cape. By the s, the cape was divided into wing like sections.
Lapels appeared in some versions while others had no lapels. It looked like a cape worn over a coat and provided extra weather protection for carriage drivers and others who spent a lot of time outdoors. Undergarments and Sleepwear Until the s, men slept in a nightshirt, a long loose fitting dress like garment that could reach to the knees or longer. Shoes and Socks Socks made of Balbriggan, an Irish knit, were usually black and held up by garters.
High top shoes featured pointed toes and could have laced or buttoned closures.
For evening, a gentleman wore pattent leather low rise shoes or low rise boots. In the s, toes became blunt and squared off. Cloth topped half boots featured leather on the lower part of the shoe, with heavy cloth stitched on the upper part. Plimsolls or sneakers were rubber soled and were worn at the beach or for tennis. Keds were introduced in Rubber overshoes were available to protect feet from the rain.
Rubber boots lined with wool provided warmth in winter and for snow. House slippers made of plush silk often featured elaborate embroidery.
The slip on house shoes could be open or closed backed. Swimwear In England, men wore drawers for swimming. Clothing of the Lower Class Working class men wore ready made garments constructed of inexpensive fabrics like cotton, wool, denim, or corduroy. Bib overalls were introduced in the s. Questions must be on-topic, written with proper grammar usage, and understandable to a wide audience.
This is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. This is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. It might sound dire, but the decade still gave birth to some style icons. Cooper starred in 84 movies over his career.
Best suits: which style is right for you?
So when he put on a three-piece suit, especially a dark one with slim lapels and a slim tie, he looked just about perfect. But this was a decade of drastic change, and, as always, the way men dressed reflected what was going on in the broader culture. Then came acid, the hippie movement, the culture wars JFK embodied what we now know as American preppy style, suits included. When they first appeared Stateside on the Ed Sullivan show, they were in matching dark suits. Tie knots and shirt collars got so wide they now look comical, and there was more polyester in the streets than outside a SoulCycle class in Of course, not everyone was down with maroon and mustard polyester three-pieces.
Meanwhile, in England and eventually CBGB in New York, punk rockers were turning the era on its head and inventing their own sense of style-suits most definitely included-that consisted of a hodge podge of old jackets, ripped jeans, and ironic neckties. Paul Reubens played his shrunken gray suit for laughs; little did he know everyone would be dressing this way twenty years later thanks to Thom Browne. With less men than ever suiting up for work, an entire generation forgot all the fundamentals.
Pants were wide but they just pooled around square-toed shoes. Ties were wide Pleats were more popular than ever, but mostly to accommodate the expanding hips of Generation McDonalds and a misguided obsession with comfort. You know times were tough when even James Bond thought it was okay to rock a suit jacket with mom jeans.
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Then again, Brad Pitt can make anything look cool. Even aviator glasses with see-through lenses and hair gel. Another bright spot: David Letterman, in his iconic double-breasted suits that matched the personality of his gap-toothed grin.
In the new millenium, the world of suits exploded into the multi-faceted and endless universe we know it to be today. In the early-aughts, Hedi Slimane changed the game by sending super-skinny, idealized versions of s rocker style down the Paris runways, ushering in a new era of fitted clothing. The rise of street style blogs made Lapo Elkann, heir to the Fiat fortune, an instant micro-celebrity. No one else in the new millenium has worn suits with as much over-the-top panache.
The early aughts saw Jay Z in baggy T-shirts and Timberland boots, but towards the end of the decade he caught the suit-revival wave and started donning some mean tailored beauties. He also happens to be one of the only guys this century to drop a song explicitly about getting suited-up, so bonus points there.
Beau Brummell If you appreciate the way a suit consists of two simple pieces that help you get dressed without a whole lot of fuss, thank Beau Brummell.
Clive Owen in The Knick His hair is disheveled maybe it's from injecting all that cocainebut his suit remains on point. Scott Fitzgerald The man who gave us Gatsby actually had a somewhat tame sense of style for the time, though he still indulged in the customary three piece suits and foofy pocket squares. Al Capone The most famous gangster of all-time was a rare exception to one of the most drab eras in American style.
Jackets & Jeans: Menswear Combinations for Blazers, Sport Coats & Denim
Gary Cooper Cooper starred in 84 movies over his career.