United States Boys' Clothes: Steps in Getting Dressed--Photographs and Illustrations
Figure 1.-- The photograph here comes from The American Magazine (March, 1913, p. 7) (figure 1). I thought it was worth
capturing because it shows a child actually in But here in any case we have a good illustration of a child wearing an underwaist over long underwear with hose supporters and long stockings. Notice how wrinkled and lumpy the stockings look because of the underwear bunching up underneath them.
HBC's image archive is of course aqlmost entirely of boys who are fully dressed. Many are formal studio portraits or after 1900 informal snapshots. Others are family snapshots. We also have many school photographs. As a result, we are not always entirely sure what the children are wearing under their outer clothes and just how they got dressed. We are often not sure how all the different garments fitted together. This was especially the case in the late 19th and early 20th century when dressing was more complicated and the clothing more formal than the case today.
This of course is the purpose of our getting dressed project. We do have a few photographs that give us some insights. We also have a variety of illustrations from children's books and magazines that provide further insights.
We do have some photographs of children dressing to give us some idea of the process. Many of the photographs show garments more than the process of garments. There are a few photoigraphs of children in underwear as well as some book illustrations and magazine advertisements that had both photographs and illustrations. The photograph here comes from The American Magazine (March, 1913, p. 7) (figure 1). I thought it was worth
capturing because it shows a child actually in the dressing process. I'm not sure if the child is a boy or a girl. It could be either, I think, although I suspect it is a girl because of the hair style. But here in any case we have a good illustration of a child wearing an underwaist over long underwear with hose supporters and long stockings. Notice how wrinkled and lumpy the stockings look because of the underwear bunching up underneath them. Actually, the underwear looks a bit too big for the child. There is a big gap behind where the drop seat buttons. The child seems to be only three or four
years old. Most long underwear in 1913 was much more form-fitting than this child's underwear. Perhaps he/she comes from a family that handed down underwear from older to younger children as an economy device. The context of the photograph isn't very enlightening and doesn't tell us much about the circumstances. But images of children in the actual process of dressing are as scarce as hen's teeth, and I thought HBC should archive this one for that reason.
Even more valuable are the images of donestic scenes that we have archived on HBC. Many of these scenes, but not all come from underwear, support garmenrt, and hosiery advertisements. They provide valuable insights into the process of getting dressed.
These images are especially common from the early 20th century when tghere was extensive advertising for underwear, support garments, and hosiery. We seem imafes of the children in the morning getting dressed as they was up, have breakfast, and head off to school or say good bye to dad as he heads off to work, One example is a little boy already dressed in his underwaist brushing his teeth.
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Created: 10:34 PM 3/11/2005
Last updated: 3:24 AM 9/2/2005