** American Skirted Garments: Decorative Elements--Plaid


American Skirted Garments: Decorative Elements--Plaid

Figure 1.--This CDV portrait ahows a boy wearing a plaid tunic, we think in the late-1860s. He looks to be about 3 years old. Notice mother's lovingly done top curl hair style. The studio was R.M Gano in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania.

A variety of features are asoociated with skirted garments. These were options available to dressmakers. We have only begun to prepare a list. These featured were employed in both the bodice and skirt parts of skirted garments. We notice smocking on the bodice. Smocking was a embroidering technique used on smocks, dresses, and other skirted garments. There was pleating employed on the skirt part. Another decorative feature is patterns. And especially important in America is plaid. The reason for this of course is that plaid is associated with the Scottish kilt--a male garment. Thus apprently in the American mind made skirted garments more appropriate for boys. This suggsts tom us that there was some second thoughs about the centuries old convention about boys wearing skirted garments. Interestinglu modern school garments including school uniforms include pleated plaid skirts for girls, but this was not the case in the 19th centyry. The most common plaid skirted garemnt for boys besides the kilt was dresses. We also see palid tunics, although not nearly as commomly as plaid dresses. Not all plis garments werevworn by boys, but th apprtn ws more commoin for bouys, at least in the 19th century. We believe that plaid came into its own in the 19th century, in large part because of Queen Victotria and her love of Scotland. It was the Queen who made the plaid kilt popular for boy's ear when she and Prince Albert began dressing the princes in kilts. This changed when in the 20th century when plaid became more popular for girls, espcially plaid shirt, bnujt therewere also plaid dresses. .


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Created: 12:59 AM 2/10/2022
Last updated: 12:59 AM 2/10/2022