History of Lingerie
Happy Lingerie Day!
This year, Lingerie Day is April 24, 2023.
The History of Lingerie
The use of undergarments dates back thousands of years across different civilizations and cultures. But, here are 5 really fun facts you probably didn't know about the history of lingerie:
1) The oldest known bra was recently discovered in the vault of an Austrian castle and is over 500 years old.
Until 2012, it was commonly believed that the corset preceded the bra. However, this finding suggests that the bra actually came first, followed by the corset, and then the version of the brassiere that we are familiar with today.
Image credits: Universität Innsbruck
2) Mary Phelps Jacobs was credited with making the first bra with handkerchiefs and ribbon because she was tired of wearing a corset.
Mary Phelps Jacob was getting ready for a debutante ball in 1910 and was fed up with her uncomfortable whalebone corset. She asked her maid to bring her a sewing kit, two handkerchiefs and some ribbon and put them altogether to make a bra.
She got the design patented and established the Fashion Form Brassiere Co., a company that empowered women to produce bras without wires.
Caresse Crosby & her whippet Clytoris
Fun Fact: Mary Phelps aka Caresse Crosby named her dog Clytoris
But, inventing the bra was the least interesting thing she did in her life...
@hiddenintimates Inventing the bra wasn’t even the most increidble thing Caresse Crosby did. A woman you need to know! #lingerieday #womenyoushouldknowabout ♬ Storytelling - Adriel
3) Underwear, was around as we know since the Ancient Egyptians, but for some reason, in the Medieval Ages, we stopped wearing them.
In the Middle Ages, chemises were typically the only undergarment worn. The term chemise was first popularized by Queen Marie Antoinette, and she was known for wearing her "underwear" out.
This was considered "racy"...
4) We stopped wearing corsets because of the U.S. War Industries Board
Some women were pro-corset; they loved the look they achieved. Other women argued against it - calling it oppressive because it prohibited women from performing basic functions like breathing, eating and moving.
Despite any argument, corsets ultimately went out of style because of a metal shortage. The War Industries Board asked women to stop buying corsets in 1917. It freed up enough metal to build two battleships for WWI. This also really helped business for Mary Phelps' Fashion Form Brassiere Co.
5) Modern Day LingerieIn 2023, anything goes! Every day we are growing closer for everyone to wear any type of lingerie with more inclusivity, acceptance and individuality in style. There's never been a better time to express yourself through lingerie!