Montgomery Ward Waists (Fall-Winter 1900-01)

Figure 1.--Here are two of the children's waists offered in the Wards 1900 Fall-Winter catalog. This is one of several different styles offered.

Montgomery Ward offered several different types of waists in its 1900 catalogs. This indicates how widely used waists were. The waists offered had a range of popular features. Some of these waists were designed to be gender specific. Others were designed to be worn by both boys and girls. A page in the Wards 1900-01 Fall-Winter catalog p. 979 offered several differt waists. The variety of waists shown in these ads is quite revealing.

Child's Daisy Waist Hose and Skirt Supporter

But the "girl's waist" would also be appropriate for a boy who hadn't yet been breeched. The Child's Daisy Waist is apparently mainly for girls since it is described as a "Hose and Skirt Supporter combined" It comes in sizes to fit girls from 2 to 11 years. But this waist would also be suitable for a boy who had not yet been breeched and was still wearing skirts. In 1900 the breeching age was usually about 5 or 6. Therefore the ad does not specify girls but calls this a "child's waist." The Ward's ad copy read, "S 2277 Child's Daisy Waist Hose and Skirt Supporter combined. A great success. Made of corset jean, with elastic straps; has two rows of buttons, one for panties, the other for skirts. Easily laundered. Made in four sizes. Colors: Black, white and drab [almost like pale kahki color]. No. 1, 1 to 2 years, length 9 1/2 inches. No 1 only has a diaper attachment. No. 2, 2 to 5 years, length 11 1/2 inches. No. 3, 5 to 8 years, length 12 1/2 inches. No. 4, 8 to 11 years, length 14 inches. [The inches refer to the length of the elastic supporters.] In ordering give size and color. Each $ .40. Per dozen $4.30."

Fuller Waist

Note that one of these waists is only for girls, while the Fuller waist (we haven't noted this item before) is for both boys and girls. The Fuller Waist is for both boys and girls from 2 to 12 years of age. It is the ancestor of the knitted waist that became very popular in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s.The Ward's ad copy read, "S 2278 The Fuller Waist, made of unbleached stockinet; three garments in one--shirt, underwaist, stocking supporter--for year-round wear for girls and boys, as it holds skirts, drawers and trousers. Made in 6 sizes, from 2 to 12 years. 45 cents." [Note that in this waist the supporters are attached in front rather than on the sides.]


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Created: 8:47 PM 7/5/2006
Last updated: 3:58 PM 7/6/2006