Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Here is a cute little girdle with a side front closure.  The maker tag is gone.  It is still very stretchy, although a very small size.  It probably was not used to hold in as much as hold up.

Now this one is more substantial!  The tag is gone, but you can see it fits on my larger dummy, though I adjusted the hips a bit.  This is a beautiful peachy cotton with a fan design woven in.  There are stretchy panels on the sides, at the bottom front, and the top back.  A left side closure.

Here is the back.

A view of the inside.  There are more of those plushy strips at the bottom edge where the suspenders are sewed on, but the most interesting feature is the two-part back.  The upper part is separate from the bottom part so one can bend over without the stockings popping.

This next one is from the 1960's and is made of a lightweight mesh.  It "washes like a hanky".  Again, more made for holding up the stockings than controlling excess flesh.

Since I have not been getting any comments on this series I will start a new one that may be more interesting to some of you.  I still have lots of underpinnings left, so will be showing them later.


  1. Hi, just want you to know that I find your blog really interesting and think you write great commentaries. Looking fwd to your next posts!

  2. I've really enjoyed this last series of posts, I am fascinated by the underpinnings our ancestors wore and it is so hard to find information on the web never mind photographs and clippings.

    I've been in love with period fashions since girlhood and the corsets of the late 18th and early 19th century intrigue me still as something that seems both cruel yet practical since they were the only way to achieve the beautiful look and shape of the outer garments.

    I too am bemused by the labelling of "health corsets", the effect on the inner organs, health and discomfort by corsets is evident from reading the advertising, were these new ones any better though? I was relieved to learn recently that tight-lacing was not the norm although shocked that children were corseted at a young age and amazed that pregnant women and men wore them too. The extremes people would do to flaunt their wealth! I must admit temptation to girdles though since exchanging my youthful figure for my daughter!

    It strikes me that apart from the restrictive issues, it must have been been most uncomfortable to wear corsets or girdles in the heat of summer, even in lace and silk? Explains why germs and disease riddled the corsets (again not something I'd considered).

    I recently acquired some Excelsior items (2 brassieres and a girdle) from 1950s or early 1960s to study. I was a bit perplexed at the extra layer of fabric on the girdle, now I understand it's to prevent the inconvenience of popping stockings (heaven forbid!). Thank you for explaining that!

    What I am very keen to find illustrations of is the Symington side lacer from the 1920s, have you ever seen any? I think chest flatteners were an ingenious bit of wardrobe for the full-busted 1920s lady, but this early bra is intriguing me!

  3. Molly:
    A little Googling and I turned up the Symington Corstet Collection online:
    There are some VERY interesting things there and I will browse them some more later. This message board steered me there:


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