Stuart's "Ideal" Waists (Cambric) and Bloomers, 1915

Figure 1.--Stuart's offered these waists for boys up to 8 years of age. They were made from sturdy material, jean or twill. The waists in 1915 appear to have been gender specific.

Stuarts offered childrens waists in different styles for boys and girls. Bloomers were available for little girls. The term "waists" had several meanings. By 1915, the term was being increasingly uses as an undergarment for children. It provided bitton supports for other garments like long stockings. The waists were were made for children up to 8 years of age. They appear to have been durable garments made out of jean and trill. They were made for both boys and girls. Some appear to be made specifically for one gender, but others do not specipy the gender. The following types of waists were offerd.


Stuarts provided this heading for these garments, "These excellent waists are so well known and enjoy suc a fine reputation that mothers all over the country have been demanding them for years. They are made of fine chambric jean and the most durable tapes. They arecstronly reinforced wherever the strin of wear comes,and the buttons are put on to STAY ON."


Stuarts offered several different styles of waists in its 1915 catalog.

No. 33 Ideal Waists for babies

No. 33 ideal waist for babies. Made of good quality cambric. Sizes 0 to 1 only have small diaper tab in front as illustrated. Larger sizes without diaper tab age to 6 years. ... 25 cents

No. 313 Plain

Full waist of fine cambric, strongly reinforced with tape and double rows of buttons fastened on with tape. Sizes 3 to 8 years

No. 413 Embroidery Trimmed

Same as above (No. 313), but neatly trimmed with durable embroidery around neck and arm holes. Sizes 3 to 8 years. ... 50 cents

No. 543 Splendid Waist

Splendid waist for girls. Made of cambric trimmed with torchon lace and ribbon run through same. Durable row of buttons fastened on wit tape. sizes 3 to 8 years, ... 50 cents

No. 35 Boy's waists

Boy's waists made of string jean or twill material. Bone buttons around waist on double tape. Buttons in front. 3 to 8 years. 55 cents.

No. 185 boy's waist

Boy's waist, made of string jeans or twill material. Adjustable shoulder straps. Fastens in front. 3 to 8 years. ... 35 cents,


The ad copy reads, "Little girls bloomers made of white of white ripple ???. alunder beautifully and need no ironiong. Ages from 3 to 6. 29 cents." HBC noted that the ad copy indicated that no ironing. This means presumably that mothers often ironed their little girl's bloomers. Other wise there would be not need to specify that these did not need to be ironed. This is also a good indication of how household activities have changed in America.


HBC notices that te term "cambric jean" is used in the ad copy. HBC is not sure what cambric jean is and how it compares to regular jean material. Cambric itself is a plain, usually wite, cotton or linen material of fine close weave.


These waists in 1915 appear to have been gender specific. The short part of the baby and girls waists have no center front buttons while the boys styles do have buttons runnimg down the front.

Main Waists Page

Information about these waists are available in the main garter waists page. Note that Suart's refers to waisrs, but this is a general terms that has several meanings including shirts. What they are referring to are garter waists. Here we explain the cronology, material, utilization, ages, purpose, and other information about these garmemts. HBC is just beginning to collect information on these garments, but the information we have collected is archived here.


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Created: May 25, 2001
Last updated: 3:48 PM 12/17/2004