Saturday, August 18, 2018
Vintage Skivvies Underwear History


The Teen Years

And along the way, advertising mirrored the changes. Oil paintings of men in their Kenosha Klosed Krotches by Saturday Evening Post artist J.C. Leyendecker were daring for 1911 and made history as the first national print ads for men's underwear. Most of the Men Shown in early underwear advertisements were fellows who ("Put hustle in the tussle!" as the Superior Underwear Company put it), men who were likely to put a lot of "strain" on their undergarments. Chalmers Knitting began offering mesh fabrics and two-piece suits that were cooler for summer.

As the industry moved toward 1920, the emphasis began to shift to convenience and comfort. Ads were full of "patented" new designs to reduce buttons and increase accessibility. Some early woven cloth union suits had open crotches, for obvious reasons of hygiene, often held closed with buttons. Then came the various closed crotch designs. Some just draped across the buttocks and stayed more or less closed due to fabric overlap. Others had a D-shaped flap down the rear crotch seam with a single button in the middle of the right buttock to keep it closed. Suddenly, "comfort" was the biggest news of the day.

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