Wednesday, May 03, 2006

What Victorian Gents Wore - Part I

Victorian Menswear
Shirts & Undergarments of the mid-nineteenth century
What men wore in the mid-nineteenth century wasn't that much different from what men wear today.
Shirts were cut full in both the body and sleeves. All shirts were loose fitting with collars. Dress shirts buttoned down the front, while work and non-dress shirts were pullovers. A placket with four buttons down the front of the shirt allowed the man to fit the shirt over his head.
The materials used for shirts were wool, flannel, cotton, muslin and linen. Dress shirts came in white only, while work and non-dress shirts could be white, plaid, striped or calico.
Undershirts were generally worn beneath shirts. They consisted of wool or cotton and sometimes old shirts served as undershirts. Drawers were worn beneath trousers. These were full-length, constructed of wool or cotton and had a fly front opening and closed with a button at the waist. A one-piece Union Suit was worn in extremely cold weather. These buttoned up the front, had a fly front opening and drop down panel on the seat ( A good example of this is the scene in "Back to the Future III" where Michael J. Fox is practicing his draw in front of a full-length mirror.)
Some links with photos:

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