Friday, March 6, 2015

Feature Friday: Overalls!

Overalls. A style worn by both men and women. Sported by adults, teens, and kids.

The very first overalls, originally referred to as "slops," were created in the 1700's. They were worn by working men and considered a symbol of low class.

The material was not denim, but instead a tough cloth. They were built for durability and not for comfort and were not fitted well at all. Men usually wore them over another pair of pants.

Around the 1850's, overalls became more convenient for the workday. These changes included pockets for tools, including rulers and pens and different colors. White for painters, blue for farmers and pinstripes for railroad workers. Shortly after, manufacturers started using denim to make overalls.

Women began wearing overalls by the 1900's.  Actress Helen Holmes wore a pair in a 1914 silent film. Rosie the Riveter also wore overalls on her "We can do it" posters during World War II. She represented the millions of overalls-wearing women in the wartime factories.

Children could wear overalls by the 1900's when OshKosh B'Gosh began selling them in children's sizes so kids could dress like their dads. Once these kid-size overalls were featured in catalogs, sales skyrocketed. They remain popular today.

It wasn't until the 1960's when overalls became a fashion statement. Retailers began producing them in high-end fabrics and a large number of colors. Plaid and patterned overalls also showed up in boutiques. 

In the 1990's, many popular hip hop artists wore overalls with one strap unbuttoned, which started a trend that made its way through American high schools.
You don't see as many people wearing overalls as they were in the 90's but you can still easily buy them in stores in many different colors and prints. 

Do you have a pair of overalls?


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