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Written by Hollis Jenkins-Evans/pastperfect2 and Liza D.It’s as true now as it was 150 years ago: the fashions people wear are indicators of their times.LOOK FOR THE LABEL Look for labels in the side seams and hems of older garments. The Coat and Suit Industry National Recovery Board was a trade organization meant to ensure that garments were made in accordance with Fair Labor Standards. The Fur Products labeling act of 1952 required an accurate description of fur (e.g.
A CUT ABOVE – garment construction Watch pockets can be found on the waistline or waistband of dresses of the 1840s-1880s, and elsewhere on the dress bodice from the 1880s.
Cartridge pleating of the skirt at its waist is seen from the 1840s-1860s, fading out by the 1870s.
Tiny piped armhole seams date a garment to the 1870s or before and were rare after that. Three-quarter and seven-eighth length sleeves were popular from the late 1930s through the 1950s. Armholes were cut high and fitted in the 1950s and the 1970s.
The modern metal zipper was invented in 1914 and used in galoshes and bags until 1927, after which they were also used in men’s trousers. Machines were not in common use for civilian garments until after 1845.
They were not common in women’s dresses until the late 1930s. Machine chain stitch came first, followed by lockstitch. Hand-sewn and machine-sewn construction (as opposed to hand-sewn finishing) coexisted for years – until the 1880s, if not later.